During 2006-7 Vicki Bennett was one of the two artists awarded an Interact Artist Residency with BBC New Media, supported by Arts Council England and the Creative Archive Licence Group.
Vicki spent 4 months with “access all areas” to the BBC’s million strong archive. The result was a short film using imagery collaged from a number of documentaries made between 1951 and 1980 – featuring footage shot at The Festival Of Britain, also other footage portraying optimistic outlooks on post-war Britain. She tells the story, through layers of A/V collage, of how the artist can bring about positive change in culture. By juggling layers of imagery and context, much like a puppeteer, the film portrays the playfulness of the artist/director, moving images and scenery around with surprising results – “Trying Things Out”. It is partly autobiographical in that it reflects, by use of footage of people playing with machines and effecting imagery, that access to film archives can inspire new work, creating new dialogues where otherwise there may have been none. Sadly, both groups who had the vision to be setting up such forward-thinking projects (The Creative Archive and Interdisciplinary Arts – Arts Council England) were axed shortly before the completion of this film. May this film travel to all the places that these organisations would have liked, and thank you, Paul Gerhardt and Tony White.