Monthly Archives: September 2014

I look around and imagine (post from filmmaker, Sarah Mace-Dennis)

I arrive at artsdepot excited to meet the young creatives who will collaborate on the development of a new film that tells the story of the Tally Ho: A Place To Meet local heritage project. As I enter the building, I look around and imagine the spaces that were once found at this location. Horses run through my mind toward the Tally Ho Coach Company that may or may not have actually existed; couples and families gather excitedly to see films at the popular Gaumont Cinema; and people wander curiously through the market searching for bargains or rare goods. Walking from the street up to the café, I move through the colourful creative space that is artsdepot today.

Natalka and Gianluca from the youth panel joined me to discuss and map out some possible approaches for creating the film. I am always fascinated to hear more about the things that people see in a good film, and it was great to hear these two young people talk about what makes a good documentary. Qualities that emerged as being important were films that carefully revealed multilayered facts about their subject or object of study and films that ensured that different and even opposing sides of a topic were covered.

We talked about the goal of the film, which will not only capture artsdepot as it is today, but will also tell the story of the organisation’s vibrant and diverse community. The approach I proposed for achieving this goal was to interview the artists and creative team who are developing work for the Tally Ho: A Place to Meet project. This means that we will create four short cinematic ‘vignettes’ each of which feature a different member of the creative team involved in the project. Each participant will talk about their contribution to the project, the different creative processes they have used, and finally, their work’s relationship to the different historical echoes that can be sensed at Tally Ho Corner.

Here’s a snap of Gianluca and I, capturing some footage at the Tally Ho pub just down the road from artsdepot.

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The session ended with discussions of cutaways, musical recordings and compositions, and different filmic approaches that we could explore to tell this story. Even in these early stages, I am very much looking forward to working with Gianluca, Natalka and the rest of the creative team involved in Tally Ho as the film continues to emerge.

Gaumont Memories (post from our visual artist Jacky Oliver)

Working as the Visual Artist for the The Tally Ho a Place to meet project has been a great opportunity to look at a site that I’ve known all my life, but I’ve never really appreciated the rich history of it. Focusing for the main part on the Gaumont Cinema I was lucky enough to meet the Reminiscence Group in East Barnet Village on August 29th . A lovely group of ladies meet once a month on Friday afternoons in the East Barnet Baptist Church. They kindly shared their memories of the Gaumont cinema with me.

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I am really fascinated by older generations, so I prepared some simple books for the group to record their memories through their own handwriting. The beauty of their flowing script is something that I will definitely be including in my final artwork.

A lot of the ladies had visited the cinema as children, with their parents and then later with boyfriends and then their own husbands and families. One lady went for Afternoon tea with china tea cups, served by waitresses in uniforms similar to the ones worn in the Lyons Tea Shops. Not everyone was lucky enough to have visited the cinema while the restaurant was open, although one went to a wedding reception there.

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They discussed the 2 or three different prices for the tickets, 1 and 9 was definitely one of the prices. The way in which people queued in different lines for seats which varied in price.

The Grand Hall was another cinema in North Finchley, and a long list of other cinemas from the local area was discussed, Cinema was the main form of entertainment with the films being changed twice a week.  Monday Tuesday and Wednesday had one film and then on Thursday the film was changed.

Tally Ho corner has always been an important terminus, so it was really great to hear the different ways that visitors to the Gaumont travelled there, on trolley buses, some of the ladies clearly remembering the number and route that the buses or the trams they used travelled on.

There has been quite a change in the way cinema is less of an important part of our lives now. The way that these ladies have enthusiastically shared their experiences has been a real privilege to listen to. The next step now is to do justice to this session and Olivia’s research in the development of the final piece for the exhibition in October