Abigail Child

Narrative Bodies: Films and Videos by Abigail Child

“In effect, a feminist Muybridge, breaking down gestures and actions to reveal unconscious and otherwise invisible patterns.” Tom Gunning

Jack H. Skirball Series

Poet, essayist and filmmaker Abigail Child sees her creations as a curious and particular intersection, often humorous, sometimes alchemical, between sound and image. Bodies, fetishes, symbols, icons and relics are reinvented and refitted to new realities and new desires. The total assembly is a movement metaphorically (with the ghostly re-emergence of Griffith on one side and on the other Eisenstein), and the images and poetic rhythms use structure as a magnifying glass to uncover the lies and injustices of history. Child’s film cycle, Is This What You Were Born For (1981–89), is a landmark of contemporary avant-garde cinema, and her recent works continue to be widely shown and celebrated. Films include Peripeteia I (1977), Perils (1986), Mayhem (1987), The Future is Behind You (2004–05), Mirror World (2006) and Ligatures (2009).

In person: Abigail Child 

Curated by Steve Anker and Bérénice Reynaud.


Funded in part with generous support from the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.

Associated Images: 

MON 4/2
8:30 pm

G - General Audience

M - REDCAT Members

ST - Students

CA - CalArts Students/Faculty/Staff