John Akomfrah: Why history matters

The artist talks about his approach to filmmaking

John Akomfrah talks about his practice as a filmmaker, how he navigates between the gallery and cinema, what compelled him to make his Vertigo Sea 2015, and the influence of Andrei Tarkovsky.

In this film, John also talks about his commitment to the 'philosophy of montage', his interest in archive and documentary and the importance of history.

John is an artist and filmmaker well known for his work with the London-based Black Audio Film Collective, which he co-founded in 1982. He made his debut with Handsworth Songs 1986 which went on to win the Grierson Award for Best Documentary in 1987. Today he runs the production company Smoking Dog Films and continues to produce films for a variety of spaces.

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