A history lesson and the labour of breastfeeding: highlights from Channel 4 Random Acts
It’s Nice That has partnered with Channel 4 Random Acts not only to celebrate the platform’s relaunch and new TV show but also to celebrate the breadth of disciplines and emerging talent it continually nurtures. We’ve commissioned five films as part of our partnership with Random Acts and you can see the first two here and here.
In honour of the programme’s diversity, we’re also featuring some of the other commissioned shorts in the TV show. Here we spotlight The Chapman Brothers’ trip through its kaleidoscopic world put together by Weirdcore and Jake Dypka’s film with spoken word artist Hollie McNish, which vocalises the daily battles mothers face when nursing in public.
Weirdcore and The Chapman Brothers: An Unnatural History of the World
Put together by Jake Chapman and visual artist Weirdcore, this 90-second film is a surreal, visual romp through all of The Chapman Brothers work. The creative duo often creates dark and energetic work, and this kaleidoscopic journey takes us from early molecular life all the way to floating animal and human body parts. The imagery is technicoloured and unsettling, yet still strangely hypnotic.
Weirdcore has previously created trippy visuals for musicians including Aphex Twin, MIA and Tame Impala, as well as work for MTV and the British Fashion Awards. This film started life as an early test for the artist, originally using the artwork as a base to see if it could be made any more “wrong.” This juxtaposition of imagery is felt throughout as seemingly unrelated themes, objects and ideas morph into each other as they oscillate.
Jake Dypka and Hollie McNish: Embarrassed
The controversy surrounding breastfeeding rages on as public nursing remains widely unaccepted in a world dominated by breasty woman plastered on magazine covers and billboards. To readdress the balance, London-based director Jake Dypka has collaborated with British poet and spoken word artist Hollie McNish to create Embarrassed; an open letter to society about the double-standard of anti-breastfeeding discrimination so many mothers face daily.
Hollie’s confident and visual style of poetry works well with Jake’s grimy depiction of public toilets and cramped, isolated spaces that act as the backdrop to the poet’s eloquent tirade. The strength in Jake’s film comes from the truth and personal experience Hollie speaks of, having become a mother herself in her mid-20s. This relatability is compelling and made even more persuasive as other mothers sit mouthing Hollie’s words, tired of this long-standing contradiction.
Channel 4 Random Acts showcases three-minute films created by established artists and up-and-coming amateurs, chosen for their bold and original expressions of creativity. The next TV episode of Random Acts will air Monday 23 May 2016 at 12:05am on Channel 4. To watch weekly Random Acts selections or explore the entire archive, head to the Random Acts website.
About the Author
Rebecca became staff writer at It’s Nice That in March 2016 before leaving the company at the end of 2017. Before joining the company full time she worked with us on a freelance basis many times, as well as stints at Macmillan Publishers, D&AD, Dazed and frieze.