Members of the public are invited to Keele University for the premiere of a new film which documents the creative lives of two of Britain’s most prolific post-war designers.
Back to The Drawing Board: The Documentary, will be premiered at Keele University on Tuesday 24th January at 7.30pm, in the Westminster Theatre, and tickets are free of charge.
This short film tells the story of two lives and one household defined by the rhythms of drawing and design. Pat Albeck and Peter Rice shared a lifetime together as partners, parents and above all as two of post-war Britain’s most prolific and prominent designers. The film provides a precious glimpse of this unique partnership, as Pat and Peter reflect on their long careers and speak of the joys of their lives lived in design. This is an invitation to meet two wonderful artistes in their home, telling their story in their own words and pictures.
Pat Albeck is one of the leading designers in modern Britain, having worked in the textile, pottery and paper industries and for John Lewis and the National Trust. Peter Rice was one of the pre-eminent stage and costume designers in modern British opera and theatre.
The film will be officially opened by Darren Henley, Chief Executive of Arts Council England, which recently awarded a £300k grant to boost cultural events in Stoke-on-Trent.
The film is produced and directed by Dr Pawas Bisht of the School of Media, Communications and Culture at Keele University, and draws on his engagement with the themes of remembering and identity in both his practice as a documentary filmmaker and in his academic research.
The film follows a hugely successful exhibition of the couple’s work, and the shared title of the film and exhibition reflects their shared themes. The film was shot over a period of two years, alongside preparations for the exhibition. Like the exhibition, the film’s focus on the lives of Pat and Peter enables a broader examination of the dynamics of creativity in everyday life and over the course of a lifetime. The relationship between ageing and creativity is also a key concern for both the film and the exhibition.
Director Dr Pawas Bisht comments:
“It was a pleasure and a privilege to work on this intimate portrait of Pat Albeck and Peter Rice. Their warmth and generosity in sharing their experiences and allowing us access to their home was wonderful.”
“Peter’s passing away in December 2015 during the making of the film was a very sad event. This unexpected loss inevitably became a point of focus for the film. The film examines how, for Pat, creative work provided the means for grieving, remembrance and recovery.”
The exhibition and events tie in to several of the University’s research themes, including the creative bonds between the generations, the cultural heritage of the local community, and creative engagement in later life.
Professor Fiona Cownie, Pro Vice-Chancellor for Student Experience at Keele, comments:
“The cultural focus of the events and exhibition, along with Pat and Peter’s connections to Stoke-on-Trent, are especially important to celebrate this year, as we support the bid to be City of Culture in 2021. Developing the exhibition and documentary has been a remarkable journey for everyone involved, and it has been my great honour to have lead this project. We would like to thank Pat and Peter’s family, in particular Matthew Rice and Emma Bridgewater, for their enthusiastic support of the project.”
The event is free to attend, with tickets available from www.keele.ac.uk/artskeele