LUX Scotland presents: The Unbreakable-up

29 December 2019

Eden Court
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Kate Davis, Charity, 2017. Courtesy of the artist and LUX.

In the run up to the announcement of the Margaret Tait Award 2020/​21 shortlist LUX Scotland presents a screening of three recent recipients, Kate Davis, Sarah Forrest, and Duncan Marquiss.

The Unbreakable-up is the title of a poem included in origins and elements, filmmaker and poet Margaret Taits’ (1918 – 99) first self-published edition of poetry. In the poem, written during the winter of 1958, Tait considers the essential links, yet growing distance, between the humanities and sciences, seeking to bridge the divide. A theme common to these three works. Taits’ poetry, like her films, seem comfortable with the ultimately unknowable nature of reality.

Kate Davis’ film, Charity (2017), was inspired by the ways in which Margaret Tait invites us to contemplate fundamental emotions and everyday activities that are often overlooked. The film explores how the essential – but largely invisible and unpaid – processes we employ to care for others could be re-imagined. In Again, it objects (2016), by Sarah Forrest, the focus lingers on a curtain, almost still as a black hole opens in the room. It’s a narrative of uncertainty, of the unexpected coming true. Evolutionary Jerks & Gradualist Creeps (2016), by Duncan Marquiss, sees two evolutionary biologists, Niles Eldredge and Armand Marie Leroi consider the analogies and differences between the cultural and the biological realms, comparing the history of life within the fossil record with the evolution of pop music.

The Margaret Tait Award is a LUX Scotland commission delivered in partnership with Glasgow Film, with support from Screen Scotland inspired by the pioneering Orcadian filmmaker and writer Margaret Tait (1918 – 99). As the 2019/​20 recipient, Jamie Crewe’s new work, Ashley (2020), will premiere at the Glasgow Film Festival 2020 after which the 2020/​21 recipient will be announced.


Kate Davis, Charity, 2017. HD video, 16 min

Sarah Forrest, Again, it objects, 2016. HD video, 6 min 18 sec

Duncan Marquiss, Evolutionary Jerks & Gradualist Creeps, 2016. HD video, 38 min

Programme duration: 60 min.

About the artists

Kate Davis 

Kate Davis works across a range of media, including film/​video, drawing, printmaking, installation and bookworks. Questioning how to bear witness to the complexities of the past, Davis’ artwork is an attempt to reconsider what certain histories could look, sound and feel like. This has often involved responding to the aesthetic and political ambiguities of historical art works and their reception. She was recipient of the Margaret Tait Award 2016/​17.

Sarah Forrest

Sarah Forrest is an artist based in Glasgow, whose creative practice incorporates video, writing, object making and installation. She graduated from the Duncan of Jordanstone College of Art and Design, Dundee (BA Hons Fine Art) in 2003 and the Glasgow School of Art (MFA) in 2010. She was recipient of the Margaret Tait Award 2017/​18 and is a current AHRC Doctoral Researcher at Glasgow School of Art.

Duncan Marquiss

Duncan Marquiss is a Glasgow based artist who works with film and video, drawing, writing and music. Much of his work explores overlaps between the cultural and the biological. Marquiss graduated from the MFA at Glasgow School of Art in 2005 and undertook the LUX Associate Artist Programme, London in 2009. He was the recipient of the Margaret Tait Award 2015 – 16.