William Raban, Malcolm Le Grice and Gill Eatherley performed together in the early 1970s as Filmaktion. Participants also included Annabel Nicolson and Mike Dunford. The group’s central concerns were to dramatise the film-projection event, to give viewers an active role in which they construct their own experience, and become aware of the elements that have contributed to it. 

Films showing in this section: 

13:33 - Malcolm LeGrice Threshold 1972
13:47 - Gill Eatherley Hand Grenade 1971
13:53 - William Raban Angles of Incidence 1973

Malcolm LeGrice Threshold 1972

16 minutes. Collection: Illuminations & Whitechapel Art Gallery 

Threshold was largely constructed from ‘waste’ film - light-fogged ends of film-rolls and discarded documentary footage. It shows the artist’s concern with emphasising film-printing, processing, and re-filming procedures. ‘Film is, at each stage, ‘raw material’ for new transformation’ Le Grice has said. The work is ‘performed’ by the artist, who adjusts the position and projection-speed of the three film projectors. 


Malcolm Le Grice was born in 1940, and studied at Slade School of Art, London. He founded the London Filmmakers’ Co-op workshop in the late 1960s, at the same time introducing film to fine art students at St Martins School of Art and Goldsmith’s College, London. He has balanced his continuing practice as a filmmaking artist with campaigning for the artform in print, in his books Abstract Film and Beyond 1977 and Experimental Cinema in the Digital Age (BFI) 2001, in higher education, and in committees at the British Film Institute and the Arts Council. His most recent works have been digital video installations. 

Gill Eatherley Hand Grenade 1971

8 minutes. Collection: Illuminations & Whitechapel Art Gallery 

Gill Eatherley develops the technique of ‘drawing’ images in the camera, frame by frame, using a moving light-source. ‘Malcolm Le Grice helped me with Hand Grenade. First of all I did these stills; the chairs traced with light. And then I wanted it all to move… so we started on 16mm [film]. We shot only 100 feet on black and white [film] in pitch dark, and then took it to the Co-op and spent ages printing it all out on the printer there.’ Gill Eatherley 2002 


Gill Eatherley was born in 1950. She studied at Winchester School of Art and St Martins School of Art, and later Royal College of Art, London. She worked at the London Filmmakers’ Co-op in the early 1970s then left Britain after a period of teaching at St Martins. She now lives and works in France. 

William Raban Angles of Incidence 1973

9 minutes. Collection: Artist 

This film is the starting point of a continuous investigation into ways of presenting Cubist space in terms of the flat surface of the film screen. The film image is a view through a window, the window-frame providing a constant spatial reference point, as the view beyond is modified by a series of major and minor variations in camera viewpoint. The film is presented unedited - just as it was filmed in the camera’. William Raban 1993. 


William Raban was born in 1948. He studied at St Martins School of Art, London, and Reading University. He ran the London Filmmakers’ Co-op workshop, and wrote and published Filmmakers Europe, an international listings and review magazine which reflected the artform’s internationalism. His work has included expanded cinema, installations and work for television, much of it with a strong social/political undercurrent. He has taught at North East London Polytechnic, St Martins School of Art and currently at the London College of Printing.