Tindersticks explore ‘Minute Bodies’ at the Barbican

Tindersticks are returning to the Barbican for a new “cine concert”.

Last year the group performed their album ‘The Waiting Room’ live and in sequence to accompany the short films that had been created for each track.

On 17 June they’re back to do something similar, but with a new film: ‘Minute Bodies: The Intimate World of F. Percy Smith’.

Directed by the band’s own Stuart Staples and first screened at the 60th BFI London Film Festival in October, it is a tribute to the work of F. Percy Smith, the naturalist, inventor, and pioneering filmmaker of the early twentieth century.

The film’s music, which will be released as an album on 9 June, was created by tindersticks and a loose collective of invited musicians: Thomas Belhom (percussion), Christine Ott (Ondes Martenot and piano), David Coulter (musical saw and nose flute), and Julian Siegel (saxophone).

“Radiating from within the classic ‘Secrets of Nature’ educational film series is the pure, breath-taking photography of Frank Percy Smith. Mostly filmed at his north London home using equipment designed and built by himself, his work seems as fresh and bewildering today as when it was first screened,” explains Staples.

“From a small glimpse of that work, I was compelled to learn more. The more I saw, the more I felt a need to collaborate with this F. Percy Smith. I felt the beauty and adventure in his images to be somehow trapped within their time and format. As I started to cut them loose, the musical forms and connections began to emerge.

“My main aim for ‘Minute Bodies: The Intimate World of F. Percy Smith’ is that it invites Smith’s work to breathe and exist in the present. Smith was a major, unique figure. His work transcends the constraints of its time, and now it teaches us about patience, commitment, ingenuity and determination.”

  • ‘Minute Bodies’ is released on DVD on 9 June. Visit minutebodies.com for more information.

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