This film is currently unavailable

Red Sea

Spring tides and menstrual cycles at the full and new moon

Animation & Artists Moving Image 1982 6 mins Silent


Spring tides at Ynys Llanddwyn at the full and new moon are compared to the filmmaker’s own ‘body tides’ from dark to light and back again. Like other films by Judith Noble (formerly Higginbottom), The Red Sea is concerned with the menstrual cycle, and its relationship to lunar cycle. Higginbottom and other feminist artists such as Catherine Elwes, Carolee Schneemann and Judy Clark were trying to reclaim menstruation from its negative image and assert it as a source of creative energy. The Red Sea is made of 16mm film and 35mm still images, re-worked and over-printed.

Founded in 1966, the London Film-Makers’ Co-operative started life at Better Books, a counter-culture bookshop on Charing Cross Road, where a group led by poet Bob Cobbing and filmmakers Stephen Dwoskin and Jeff Keen met to screen films. Initially inspired by the activities of the New American Cinema Group in New York, the London Co-op grew into a pioneering organisation that incorporated a film workshop, cinema space and distribution office. During its four-decade history, the Co-op played a crucial role in establishing film as an art form in the UK and participated in a vibrant international film scene. This BFI Player collection brings together new scans of films distributed by and/or produced at the London Co-op. Although produced at the London Film-Makers’ Co-operative, Higginbottom was also a member of Circles – the first women artists' film and video distribution organisation in Britain. Circles was founded in 1979 by a group of filmmakers including Lis Rhodes, Jo Davis, Felicity Sparrow and Annabel Nicolson, many of whom had worked at the Co-op. Their work continues today through Cinenova, formed in 1991 from the merger of Circles and another feminist distributor, Cinema of Women.