Welcome to ViewFinder Issue 116: Home
Since the last themed issue (114’s Spring collection on Decolonisation, 115 was a ‘best of the decade’ collection) life around the world has, quite clearly, changed significantly. Despite me choosing the theme of ‘Home’ for issue 116 around two years ago when planning ahead, the arrival of Covid-19 pandemic makes it now seem like an inevitable, and sadly sibylline choice.
Home, as I originally conceived of the theme in the halcyon days of 2018, was going to be focusing on domestic space as a site of conflict and resolution. But as the Home became a place of work, safety, isolation and digital invasion in the last six months, the concept of the domestic has altered, perhaps for good. The number of proposals we received for this issue was the highest in our (rather long) history, perhaps reflecting the pertinence of the subject matter, or the fact that a lot of people were in their houses looking for something to concentrate on in the early summer months. After careful selection I still ended up with seventeen pieces which I thought would make interesting, provocative and diverse reading, so that’s the number we have in this, seemingly bumper, issue. Of course, Covid-19 is an influence on the writing here but certainly not dominant, which I like, given how much we have to read about this virus as it is.
Highlights from Issue 116 include: ‘Home is a Fragile Place’ by Anna Viola Sborgi, exploring short films made during lockdown, Jean-Baptiste De Vaulx’s ‘No place like home’ which centres on Lucrecia Martel’s exceptional Salta Trilogy. In ‘Inhabit of: Incubating Death Beyond the Domestic’, Clare Archibald writes very movingly about the process of expressing her experience of going through labour to give birth to a child that died shortly afterwards, as expected, through film and audiovisual creation, for their article 'Police Departments and Home Invasion', Travis Wagner investigates how training films and videos for the Police have changed the way we conceive of the home. Elisabetta Garletti’s review of Jamie Crewe’s Ashley puts domestic horror at the forefront of the transgender experience and Ruth Adams’ analysis of Abigail’s Party is seemingly current and reflective simultaneously.
We have also introduced 'BoB Playlists' for the first time. Our staff have read the essays and created BoB watching lists for you to accompany the reading, to provide extra inspiration and thought.
With so much to read and think about I hope that Issue 116: Home is one of our best yet. Thank you to all the contributors for writing and to you, for reading.
Kit Caless, Learning on Screen