I’m really looking forward to an evening of film, spoken word & discussion featuring poet Sam Berkson, film-maker Fahim Alam, myself and another guest speaker TBA, in response to Jimmy Cauty‘s #ADPRiotTour installation, which is hosted by Styx, 5, Ashley Rd, Tottenham London N17 9LJ between June 21 & 23. Riot, Resistance & The Contested Future is FREE, starts at 7:00 pm at Unit 6, Imperial Works, Fountayne Road, London. N15 4QL.
Sam Berkson, aka ‘Angry Sam’, has been hosting and promoting live poetry events with Hammer & Tongue for ten years. He has won slams, performed in three continents and published two books of poetry with Influx Press. His debut, ‘Life in Transit’ was described as “a highlight of 2012” by cultural theorist Mark Fisher. He followed this with a commission for Fishbar photogallery of poems written around Dalston’s Ridley Road market, composing the text of Lorenzo Vitturi’s award winning photobook, Dalston Anatomy.
His most recent collection, Settled Wanderers, records his experience living on the Western Saharan refugee camps and contains the first English translations of Saharawi poetry. Poet Chris Searle, writing in the journal Race & Class, said that the “poems carry a particular kind of powerful witness in their lyrical solidarity. They are narratives of empathy with the lives of people he encountered.”
“I have always found Sam’s dedication to poetry inspiring. He has the rare gift of being informed and intelligent without being condescending. He is a good poet, a poet in the true sense of the word.” – Kate Tempest, poet
Fahim Alam is the maker of the acclaimed documentry Riots Reframed, which is a feature-length documentary which reframes England’s 2011 riots through voices of resistance – threading these perspectives together using moody instrumentals, dramatic monologue and raw spoken word. This hard-hitting film is unique both in its scope and the journey that produced it. The idea was conceived soon after Fahim, was released from prison on bail, after being arrested for taking part in riots. With virtually no knowledge of filming and editing, he set out to make an independent and complex documentary. Most of it was filmed whilst Fahim wore an ankle-tag and was subject to a strict curfew as he awaited trial for the charge of ‘violent disorder’.
The documentary takes the viewer through a journey that begins in Tottenham and spirals out to a detailed look at the role of police, power, racism, government, prison, war, resistance and more.
Although the voices base their analysis around the riots, the scope of Riots Reframed is much wider and stands in its own right as a poetic but fierce challenge to the system we live under and the suffering it produces. The result is a radical social commentary grounded in knowledge and art, that synthesises a number of voices, from prominent social, cultural and political analysts, to prisoners still recovering from time inside.
Riots Reframed is simultaneously engaging and informative; and importantly, a challenge to the media institutions that serve the narrative of the power structure. http://riotsreframed.com/
And me, reading & ranting from Place Waste Dissent, with another guest speaker to be announced. There’s a facebook event page, if you’re into that sort of thing. It’s free.