City Gallery

Past event

Tuatara Open Late

3 June 2021

If we go to Alert Level 2, we will be able to present some—but not all—Open Late events, with hygiene measures and social distancing. We advise booking, in case there’s a shift in level. Stay tuned for updates.   

Art, music, film, talks, beer, wine, and food. A changing programme of late-night events on the first Thursday of the month.  

June Open Late is inspired by our current shows Every Artist and Marianna SimnettCREATURE. Watch  Simnett’s  The Bird Game, followed by a one-off screening of her latest film, Confessions of a Crow, in which writers Marina Warner, Charlie Fox, and James Bridle, artist Lindsey Mendick, and composer Oliver Coates dissect the themes of The Bird Game. Bring a tote, T-shirt, or tea towel and Simon Cuming will screenprint a slogan on it in our education studio. Book Club is back. Chair Pip Adam and our panel—Director of Enjoy gallery Vanessa Crofskey, photographer Simon Devitt, and art critic Francis McWhannell—discuss recurring clichés in representations of artists. To end the night, enjoy eclectic indie psych-music duo Nic & Reuben, courtesy of the Mermaidens’ Gussie Larkin, guest music curator for Open Late. Nic & Reuben’s live show is renowned to be a roller-coaster. Fun, groovy & hard hitting, they’re sure to make you smile.

Book Club reading list  

Hans Obrist Do It 

dir. Ruben Östlund The Square 

Siri Hustvedt The Blazing World  

Julia Cameron The Artist’s Way 

The Bird Game is a wicked fairy tale in which a loquacious and bloodthirsty crow, voiced by Joanne Whalley, lures six children to a secluded mansion and snares them in a sequence of deranged games. It mixes dismembered parts of Sleeping Beauty and Ovid’s Metamorphoses into a sinister witch’s brew.  The Bird Game was commissioned to mark the 150th anniversary of the Evelina Children’s Hospital for Sick Children, named after the wife of Ferdinand de Rothschild who also created Waddesdon Manor, where The Bird Game was filmed.  

Confessions of a Crow is a companion to The Bird Game that draws out the ideas and influences of the film and deftly echoes its structure and mood. Assembling reflections from artists, writers and creative collaborators, it integrates them with the maverick musical musings of Simnett’s ringleader Crow herself. Writers Marina Warner, Charlie Fox and James Bridle, artist Lindsey Mendick, and composer Oliver Coates speak about The Bird Game’s overlapping themes. With the aid of behind-the-scenes footage and archive photographs of Waddesdon Manor, where The Bird Game was shot, Simnett dives into the history of the house which accommodated evacuee children in the Second World War, and to this day houses some of the rarest species of songbirds in its magnificent aviary. The troubling link between caging and caring is teased out through Crow’s terrifying grip on her child-prey, and her shifting role between abuser and abused. 


Open Late Timetable  

5pm      Exhibitions open, supper treats from Mao & Co and tunes from Radio Active DJ Aimee Somerville

6pm         Simnett screening The Bird Game and Confessions of a Crow   

6–8pm    Screenprinting with Simon Cuming 

7pm          Book Club: Stereotypes of the Artist   

8.30pm    Live music from Nic & Reuben 

As always, our bar and galleries open at 5pm, there will be Tuatara beers, Seresin Estate wine, supper treats from Mao & Co and sounds from our RadioActive DJ.


WARNING: CREATURE contains disturbing imagery, including medical procedures. Bright flashing lights may cause discomfort or trigger reactions from those with epilepsy, migraine, or other photosensitive conditions. Viewer discretion advised.