Megacities: 12 stories of survival, Michael Glawogger (1998)
Lloyd Corporation are an artist duo based in London and Athens. Their work is often focused on informal and local economies, exploring how they raise critical issues of consumerism, globalisation and urban development.
The exhibition at Brighton CCA takes the history of the barrel as a unit of measurement as a starting point, thinking about it as a symbol of trade and embodiment of trading narratives. How for example do global systems of production impact on small, marginalised economies and communities, creating underground markets and supply routes? In an economy built on production and consumption of the new, what mechanisms are used for materials and items to circulate outside the distribution chains which produce them? How do those systems impact the lives of those sustained but this exchange economy?
For this special edition Lloyd Corporation have curated the screening, selecting the documentary Megacities: 12 stories of survival, directed by Michael Glawogger and released in 1998.
Megacities, in 12 chapters, tells the stories of Shankar the bioscope man, Modesto the chicken feet seller, Babu Khan the colour sifter, Nestor the rubbish collector, of the street kids Oleg, Borja, Kolya and Misha, Cassandra the actress, Larissa the crane driver and Tony the hustler. Day in, day out they all set about their struggle for survival with ingenuity, intelligence and dignity. And they all share a single fantasy: the dream of a better life.
To accompany this screening, we have collated the bundle below, contextualising the film choice with additional material from Lloyd Corporation’s research, inspired by their ongoing practice and exhibition at Brighton CCA.
1. Please email Polly Wright to receive access to the film, available to watch until Friday 14 April, 6pm.
**Please note the film contains violence, nudity, scenes of a sexual nature, explicit language and drug taking. The film is certificated at an 18+ rating.
2.Listen to a special tribute podcast in honour of Michael Glawogger, released in 2014 by the Scottish Documentary Podcast.
3.Read The World Is Working: Michael Glawogger’s Trilogy on Poverty and Labor, Mark Seneviratne. Published December, 2021
This is part of a programme of events that respond to Today’s gift is tomorrow’s commodity. Yesterday’s commodity is tomorrow’s found art object. Today’s art object is tomorrow’s junk. And yesterday’s junk is tomorrow’s heirloom by Lloyd Corporation.
The Front Room Film programme distributes curated bundles via email that include digital access to a film for 24-hours, a contextual introduction connected to the exhibition and a commissioned text in the form of an essay or in conversation. To sign-up to the Front Room Film Club please email Polly Wright.