Hackney Picturehose

Jem Cohen: Compass and Magnet comes to Hackney Picturehouse

London celebrates leading American filmmaker Jem Cohen with a season of screenings, music and performances.

The Whitechapel Gallery, the Barbican and Hackney Picturehouse present a major film and music season for the first comprehensive UK retrospective of Brooklyn-based filmmaker Jem Cohen, from 31 March to 28 May 2015.

Jem Cohen: Compass And Magnet presents a series of screenings and events charting Cohen’s career from the late ’80s to the present day.

Sunday 17 May, 3.00
Benjamin Smoke

Directors: Jem Cohen, Peter Sillen. USA 2000. 72 mins.

+ Related Extras

Over a decade in the making, this moving portrait tracks the life of iconic US singer-songwriter Benjamin Smoke from his childhood to his work with rock band Smoke in the 1990s and his life with HIV. The film combines an intricate collage of interviews, live performances, time-lapse cinematography and photographs.

Tickets: £8 / £7 Concessions / £6 Members

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Monday 18 May, 6.40

Director: Jem Cohen. Italy/USA 2003. 115 mins.

An acclaimed portrait of the influential band Fugazi. Filmed over eleven years, Instrument includes concert footage, off-stage observation and interviews. Made with the full involvement of the band, it compellingly weaves together music and image.

Tickets: £8 / £7 Concessions / £6 Members

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Sunday 24 May, 8.50
Building A Broken Mousetrap

Director: Jem Cohen. USA 2006. 63 mins.

+ short films for Patti Smith, Elliott Smith, R.E.M., Sparklehorse and Vic Chesnutt

Building A Broken Mousetrap centres around one performance by Holland-based musicians The Ex, who visited New York to play a concert. Their performance is intercut with city scenes in Amsterdam and New York, as well as scenes of construction sites, street life and the protests against the Iraq war and the Bush administration.

Tickets: £8 / £7 Concessions / £6 Members

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Monday 25 May, 9.00
Evening’s Civil Twilight In Empires Of Tin

Director: Jem Cohen. Canada/USA/Austria 2008. 100 mins.

A meditation on the decline of empires, juxtaposing the twilight stages of the Habsburg dynasty – one of the most important royal houses in Europe – with the current American administration. Using archival imagery, readings from the texts of Joseph Roth and a musical score by the late American singer-songwriter Vic Chesnutt, the film is a unique hybrid of a documented concert and film essay.

Tickets: £8 / £7 Concessions / £6 Members

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