The Masque of Blackness


Director: Epoh Beech Country of Origin: U.K. Runtime: 13m Genre: Animation, Experimental Block C: Date: 28-02 Time:3-4.15pm Watch Trailer

Epoh Beech’s ‘The Masque of Blackness’ is a hand drawn animation re-imagining Ben Jonson’s 1605 play ‘The Masque of Blackness’ and Joseph Conrad’s 1899 novella ‘Heart of Darkness’. Created over 7 years out of thousands of charcoal drawings, the animation weaves both texts together and explores the spirit of place to take you on a journey from West Africa to the Thames in London and the Rhine in Germany. It has themes of moonlight, oceans, rivers, unexplored territory, mythological symbolism and highlights concerns for the environment. Our guides on the journey are Hermes, a grey seal, and Pegasus, the winged horse, they are both unconstrained by the straight jacket of time.

Director Biography

Epoh Beech studied as a fine artist in Florence, at Cheltenham Art School and Chelsea College of Art. She has an MA from the University of Hertfordshire and works out of the ACAVA studios in West London. She has completed five major series of works, each follow a journey, tell a story, illustrate a particular poem or Jacobean “Masque”. Epoh has had her work exhibited in London and internationally. The work is strongly influenced by the narrative force and the quest for the sublime through the balance of colour and light most evident in the work of 15th Italian Renaissance and German Romantic painters. The Masque of Blackness (2018), Epoh’s second animated drawing was exhibited with the related drawings at Gallery 46, Whitechapel, London and monumentally projected onto The Royal National Theatre Flytower over three evenings, as part of The Thames Festival Totally Thames 2018.