The Shadowlight Artists is a group of professional artists with learning disabilities based in Oxfordshire supported by the arts charity Film Oxford. The group’s new project Shadowlight Artists: Rising was exhibited in October/November 2018 across two galleries in Oxford, spanning installation, painting, theatrical production, and film. The eight new films made as part of Rising will also be screened as standalone films for festival, broadcast and online distribution. They celebrate the group’s creative growth with an artistically ambitious body of new work, featuring documentary, performance, animation and drama. The Shadowlight Artists core group are Tom Breach, Mark Hemsworth, Russell Highsmith, Richard Hunt, Lucy Skuce and Danny Smith.
Time to Leave by Danny Smith
Danny Smith’s new Dance for Camera film continues his interest into ancestral memory and the cultures of prehistory. Working with visual artist Roly Carline he created a fish-god costume with iconography portraying the frustrations in his life. The dance moves from the chaos he sometimes feels in his everyday life to the soothing calm of a waterfall where his fish-god is invoked. (Filmed in Oxford and at Henrhyd Falls in South Wales).
Undersea Adventure – Shadowlight Artists Associates
The Shadowlight Artists Associates seeking lost treasure travel to the bottom of the ocean in a submarine. They meet all sorts of sea creatures including mermaids and a merman before stumbling upon a ghost ship. Made with support from Shadowlight Artists core group.
Collecting of Memories by Mark Hemsworth
Mark Hemsworth has been collecting photographs of particular subjects for many years (including aircraft, sunsets, the moon, flowers, landscapes and birds). Mark has grouped some of these collections for large framed photographic prints, each made up of 255 individual photographs, for exhibition at part of Shadowlight Artists: Rising exhibition. The film documents Mark’s process of collecting the photographs and the memories they represent.
Revenge of the Penguin by Tom Breach
For his first solo project with the core Shadowlight Artists group, Tom has produced Revenge of the Penguin, an animation which blends autobiography and fantasy. Starting with an incident in Tom’s early childhood, during which he threw his sister’s toy penguin into the lake at Thamesmead, the film imagines the penguin re-emerging from the lake 20 years later to exact its revenge on the adult Tom.
Blue Sash Window by Lucy Skuce
For Shadowlight Artists: Rising project, Lucy Skuce has created an ambitious installation work resulting from her interests in construction and domestic architecture. Blue Sash Window features an imposing sculptural element based around a real sash window, through which we see Lucy in her ideal environment, recreated through video projection. This is Lucy’s most ambitious creative project to date. The documentary follows the construction process. Thanks to Vent Axia for the donation of one of their fans.
Richard Hunt and Sonia Boue in conversation
After winning the 2017 Shape Open, Richard Hunt decided to expand his practice to embrace elements of sculpture and textured surfaces. Continuing his successful collaboration with autistic artist Sonia Boué, his installation work for Rising explores Richard’s interest in water, recreating a seashore scene utilising painted rocks and a boat. Each of the rocks represents a song, and has a unique iconography often relating to popular culture, in particular musicals. In the documentary, Richard and Sonia discuss their collaboration.
Singles Night – a profile of playwright Russell Highsmith
Singles Night is a new play by Russell Highsmith. He has written a full-length lively and thought-provoking romantic comedy play, which was performed by professional actors over two nights to sold-out audiences (with high proportion of people with learning disabilities), at the Old Fire Station Theatre in Oxford on 19th & 20th September 2018. The film documents Russell’s work through the writing, rehearsal and performance of Singles Night.
LRRH by Shadowlight Artists
Weird and wonderful version of Little Red Riding Hood acted by, and using animated backdrops, created by the Shadowlight Artists and Associates, including voiceover by Sophie Henderson on – subtitled