Filmmaker Kat Anderson Premieres Short Film 'Las, Fiya' In New Exhibition

by SHOWstudio on 30 January 2024

Next month, artist and winner of the inaugural East London Art Prize, Kat Anderson, will present her short film Las, Fiya as part of her exhibition Mark of Cane at Nunnery Gallery, exploring the impact of sugar on the African-Caribbean Diaspora.

Las, Fiya

2024 marks six years since the horror show that was the Windrush Scandal, where the Home Office unlawfully labelled a large group of British citizens - mostly from the Caribbean - as illegal immigrants; a political affair that rocked the nation overnight, leading to at least 80 people threatened with deportation. Although this scandal isn't directly portrayed in winner of the East London Art Prize Kat Anderson's new film Las, Fiya, it remains undoubtedly relevant, in part, due to the film's confrontational attitude towards the Industrial Revolution and the Transatlantic Slave trade - haunting legacies that bubbled to the surface during 2018.

'Las, Fiya’ (‘Last, Fire’), Kat Anderson, 2024. DoP, Edward PG Tucker. Colourist, Lulu Colour

Next month, Las, Fiya will stand at the centre of a new exhibition Mark of Cane at Nunnery Gallery, which also incorporates new works on paper by Anderson, both of which explore the impact of sugar on the African-Caribbean Diaspora and are presented by Bow Arts. Shot largely on an existing sugarcane farm in Jamaica, the film weaves historical methods of harvesting sugarcane and sugar production to lay down the foundations for a narrative to take hold. While the accompanying paper works - hand-made from the extracted by-products of sugarcane - also mark the important exploration of a new medium and are themselves a by-product of Anderson’s residency at UCL East, where a special cane crusher and boiler furnace will be used to extract materials for the paper-making process.

'Las, Fiya’ (‘Last, Fire’), Kat Anderson, 2024. DoP, Edward PG Tucker. Colourist, Lulu Colour

The exhibition as a whole acts as a continuation of Anderson’s project Episodes of Horror, an ongoing body of work utilising the genre of Horror to examine representations of the Black body and mental illness on society. You'd be correct to assume Mark of Cane may not actively embody horror in the traditional sense, but what it does do is question creativity in relation to history. In Las, Fiya, Sugarcane has multiple meanings - representing a vessel both narratively and materially - making for an imaginative and impactful examination of colonial histories that still haunt the present day.

The East London Art Prize celebrates and promotes the diversity of artistic talent that makes up the cultural hive of east London. Anderson was selected from a shortlist of 12 East London artists. Mark of Cane will be on show at Nunnery Gallery from 9 February - 21 April 2024.

'Las, Fiya’ (‘Last, Fire’), Kat Anderson, 2024. DoP, Edward PG Tucker. Colourist, Lulu Colour

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