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DCA Archive

Fugitive Archives + Q&A

Margaret Tait & Luke Fowler

Join us for a screening of Margaret Tait’s unfinished films and a live spatial sound composition by Luke Fowler. The screening and performance will be followed by a Q&A discussion with Luke Fowler, Sarah Neely and Philippa Lovatt (University of St Andrews).  

I. Unfinished Films (selected by Luke Fowler)
A one-off screening of unfinished films by filmmaker and poet, Margaret Tait (1918-1999). Part of an ongoing restoration project around Tait’s rushes and unfinished films, led by Sarah Neely (University of Glasgow) in collaboration with LUX and the Tait Estate, the ‘fugitive archive’ is ephemeral, incomplete, fleeting. Its films exist outside the boundaries of official collections. Its presence offers the potential to challenge archival practices and even the idea of the film text itself.  

The programme will include two 16mm films, versions of films from her Aspects of Kirkwall series (1974/81), and a digital sound version of These Walls (1974), a film Tait exhibited as silent. 

II. Pomona, 2021
Scottish artist, filmmaker and musician, Luke Fowler will present a spatial sound composition from quarter inch reel and optical soundtracks discovered in Margaret Tait’s archive. This is the second work Fowler has made in tribute to the legacy of Tait, having also completed his short film Houses (for Margaret) for the centenary. This new work was produced entirely from sounds, music and poetry found in the late filmmaker’s tape archive and digitised by Fowler as part of his ongoing research for a forthcoming feature length portrait.

Hosted by the Centre for Screen Cultures, University of St Andrews, with thanks to Benjamin Cook (LUX), the Orkney Library and Archive, the Margaret Tait Estate, and Glyn Davis (University of St Andrews). 

If you need to book one of our wheelchair seats please contact our box office team on 01382 432 444, or email If you require anything else or have any further questions, please get in touch. We hope you enjoy your visit!