The Marsh works with material filmed and recorded on wetlands around Christchurch Harbour, Dorset. These patches of nature exist side by side with residential occupation and high levels of leisure use. They are refuges for both wildlife and those seeking pleasure from it.
In The Marsh sound and images are recorded separately. The relation between the two is associative, not temporal. The images offer no spatial continuity. Rather, they suggest that through close attention to small patches of habitat a sense of wildernesses can emerge amidst the commotion of human activity. In this sense the film is perhaps Arcadian in intent, reminding us how familiar landscapes can become places of exploration, imagination and memory. However, this idea is tempered by knowledge that some of the species recorded for the film have only settled in the area during the last few decades, drifting northward due to climate change and habitat loss. The pleasure of hearing these species is off-set by the realisation that they are also symptoms of large-scale destructive changes.
First screened April 26th 2023 at Café Oto, London for the event ‘Syntax of a River’. This was as part of the EnCOUnTErs series of events at Café Oto curated by Helen Frosi.