Spike Island

Maeve BrennanThe Drift


8 July to 17 September 2017


Free entry

Event type


Spike Island presents a major new film commission, The Drift, by London and Beirut based artist Maeve Brennan. Combining a documentary, investigative approach with subjective encounters and personal narrative, Maeve Brennan’s practice considers the value, care and circulation of materials and their political resonance across cultures and history.

In The Drift, Brennan traces the shifting economies of objects in contemporary Lebanon. The film moves between the activities of a self-taught archaeologist in the Department of Archaeology at the American University in Beirut, the gatekeeper of the Roman temples of Niha who participated in their restoration and reconstruction in the 1970s, and a mechanic and joyrider from Britel, a town in the Beqaa valley close to the Syrian border known for trading used cars, car parts and historic artefacts. Weaving documentary material with fictional scenes and offering only subtle boundaries between the two, the film rests its focus on the desire and necessity to restore, reassemble and rebuild while hinting at converging communities, histories and narratives.

The work is produced by Chisenhale Gallery, London and Spike Island, Bristol and commissioned by Chisenhale Gallery, London; Spike Island, Bristol; The Whitworth, The University of Manchester, and Lismore Castle Arts, Lismore.

Supported by The Arab Fund For Arts and Culture - AFAC and Arts Council England Grants for the Arts.

Supported by
  • Arts Council England GfA
  • Chisenhale Gallery
  • Lismore Castle Arts
  • Spike Island logo
  • The Arab Fund for Arts and Culture (AFAC)
  • The Whitworth The University of Manchester
  • Whitworth gallery logo