Em Cooper in Conversation with Andrea Sabbadini

A sold out event filmed at the Freud Museum London on 20 February 2013.

A film screening by British director and animator, Em Cooper, followed by a discussion. This evening included  the screening of three short films which explore the complex and chaotic world of inner experience from a psychoanalytic perspective which was followed by a discussion between the director, Em Cooper and Andrea Sabbadini. For clips of the films and more information please go to: http://www.emcooper.com/

Em Cooper is a British director and animator specialising in combining oil-painted animation with live-action footage to produce short films based around psychoanalytic themes. She is interested in experimenting with film form and especially use of subjective perspectives. Her recent films have explored subjects such as infancy, obsessive compulsive behaviour and child abuse. Em’s films have been screened internationally, including at this year’s Sundance Film Festival. Her work has also shown at Turner Contemporary, Margate and discussed at various psychoanalytic conferences including the European Psychoanalytic Film Festival in London and the International Ferenczi Conference in Budapest. Her film Confusion of Tongues was nominated for the 2012 British Animation Awards, Best Student Film. Em is currently working on a feature documentary for the BBC.

Andrea Sabbadini, C. Psychol. is a Fellow of the British Psychoanalytical Society, its former Honorary Secretary and its current Director of Publications. He works in private practice in London, is a Senior Lecturer at UCL, a trustee of the Freud Museum, a member of the IPA Committee on Psychoanalysis and Culture, the director of the European Psychoanalytic Film Festival, and the chairman of a programme of films and discussions at the Institute of Contemporary Arts (ICA).

The Nest (2010) dir. Em Cooper 12mins It is seemingly just another school morning for Laura and her mother, Alice. But the differences between their two points of view leave us haunted by questions about Laura’s father. When memory and reality become confused, is it possible to understand what really happened?  The Nest is a film about the transmission of trauma through the generations of a family. It is a film snapped in two, both in narrative and in technique, using oil painted animation to bring out the unconscious motives which drive a difficult family dynamic.

Confusion of Tongues (2010) dir. Em Cooper 6mins Inspired by the 1932 paper by psychoanalyst Sándor Ferenczi, Confusion of Tongues takes us into the world of a woman suffering a sleepless night. Haunted by a recurring childhood memory and gripped by her fear of a window left open, she begins to recall a much deeper trauma.  Combining film with oil-painted animation Confusion of Tongues vividly conjures up the tragic confusion of desire which can be a devastating effect of child abuse

Laid Down (2007) dir. Em Cooper 15 mins Shot from the point of view of a newborn baby, Laid Downexplores the chaotic world of a developing infant. Set over the first few months of life, dipping in and out of animated dream sequences, we encounter the turbulent relationship between the baby’s parents from the raw, emotional and preverbal perspective of the baby.

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