Monday, March 12, 2012

Jane Arden Sleepwalking

These are the opening credits of Jane Arden (and Jack Bond’s) 1979 avant-garde flick Anti-Clock. The person singing the rather eerie song entitled Sleepwalking is Arden herself. Someone should do a cover version. Someone should also write a biography of this woman. Without doubt she is the hippest person to ever come from Pontypool. Anti-Clock and her other feminist films Separation (with Jack Bond) and The Other Side of the Underneath were reissued by the BFI in 2009. The Other Side of the Underneath was the only British film in the 1970s to be solely directed by a woman. It was filmed near Abertillery and Cwmtillery and in some sequences features actresses going through disturbing psychiatric routines while under the influence of LSD. It’s a real mind-fuck and definitely the weirdest film ever to have been shot in the Ebbw Fach valley. All of her work is worth checking out including her documentary Dali in New York (with Jack Bond) and her play Vagina Rex and the Gas Oven.