Wednesday 31 January 2024, 7.30pm


£14 £12 Advance £8 MEMBERS

Sonic Cinema presents a unique screening of Gaëlle Rouard’s atmospheric film diptych Darkness, Darkness Burning Bright, projected by the artist from her personal 16mm print.

Unfolding across two acts, Prelude and Oraison, Darkness Darkness, Burning Bright is a personal and poetic work full of expressive solarized nightscapes and pastoral unreality. The film draws us into a  crepuscular landscape, where animals and plants appear luminous and rendered in chiaroscuro, with the movements playing out through a series of tableau vivant composed from the combination of photochemically manipulated still and moving images. Produced using found sounds and drawing on the traditions of musique concrète and cinéma pour l’oreille (cinema for the ear), Rouard’s soundtrack oscillates between supporting ambience and pronounced narrative emphasis.

Gaëlle will be in conversation with Simon Field following the screening.

Programmed by Oliver Dickens for Sonic Cinema. Special thanks to Isabelle Manci & Angela Blanc at the Institut français.

Gaëlle Rouard will also present the Darkness, Darkness, Burning Bright diptych with BEEF at Cube Microplex (Bristol) on 3rd February and at Star & Shadow (Newcastle) on 7th February.

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  • Darkness, Darkness Burning Bright – Prelude, Gaëlle Rouard, 39 min, 2022, 16mm

  • Darkness, Darkness Burning Bright – Oraison, Gaëlle Rouard, 30 min, 2022, 16mm

  • Q&A with Gaëlle Rouard & Simon Field

Generously supported by Institut français du Royaume-Uni




Gaëlle Rouard (France) is a filmmaker and artist based in Grenoble. Since 1991 she has been making films, specialising in photochemical processing and the possibilities of live multi-projection. She ran the Atelier MTK DIY film laboratory in Grenoble from 1996 to 2006, and is a longtime member of Le 102, rue d’Alembert, a venue dedicated to experimental music and film. Gaëlle’s work has been presented internationally at festivals and art centres such as the Centre Pompidou Paris, the International Film Festival Rotterdam, Syros SIFF Film Festival and Brisbane Institute of Modern Art. Her latest film Darkness, Darkness, Burning Bright (2022) has received awards in various festivals, including the Istanbul International Film Festival Award, the Experimental Competition Award at the Curtas de Vila do Conde and Best Sound Design at the Ann Arbor Film Festival (2023).


Sonic Cinema is a research project and event series by Oliver Dickens, exploring the intersection of moving-image, sound art and music practice. It is dedicated to the memory of Louis Benassi.
Oliver Dickens is a film programmer based in the UK and a graduate of the Central Saint Martins/LUX MRes Art: Moving Image course. He is currently Director & programmer of Sonic Cinema (2021-present) alongside undertaking freelance work. Previously he was cinema programmer at Close-Up Film Centre (2016-2020) and Assistant Director for the 25th Media City Film Festival (2022).

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