Thursday 1st September 2016

The Invisible City – unique cinema event this November

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Heart of Glass is excited to announce The Invisible City, a unique cinematic event coming to St Helens this Autumn.

On Saturday, November 12th we will present an site specific cinema event, in collaboration with Abandon Normal Devices (AND) and Alexandra Park (St Helens) Management Limited, the former Pilkington Glass headquarters.

Featuring the granddaddy of surveillance films Alfred Hitchcock’s Rear Window and the world premiere of a new short film by artist Liam Young, this cinematic event will use the historical home of glass to explore contemporary responses to technology and transparency.

The main event will consist of a film programme, with a choice of viewing options including ‘drive-in’ and ‘viewing gallery’; and quasi-fictional tours of the Pilkington HQ, which will flatten distinctions between famous and forgotten, public and private spaces in the building. The glass fronted office complex will be the backdrop to ask questions related to transparency and invisibility in our society today.


In the days leading up to the main event there will be the opportunity to attend a choice of three themed film screenings in the former Pilkington Glass Board Room for a small audience, featuring landmark counter-surveillance films The Conversation, and Red Road with more titles to be announced.

Patrick Fox, Director of Heart of Glass, said: “The event will be a unique opportunity to see the former Pilkington site from a different perspective, including the chance to take a tour that includes areas never before seen by the public. We have a fantastic programme of work on offer, and we’re excited to animate this iconic site in a new and exciting way”

Gabrielle Jenks, Director of Abandon Normal Devices, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Heart of Glass in St Helens. We’ve been collaborating closely with the partners and artists over the last year, with the aim of creating a project that will engage audiences in the landscape that surrounds them. In November, we transform Alexandra Park into a home for sonic and cinematic espionage for a night of surveillance cinema.”




Film Programme
Doors open – 7pm
General Tickets – Full Price £6 / Concession Price £4
Drive-In Tickets £12 Per Car

Rear Window (Dir. Alfred Hitchcock / 1954 / cert. PG)

James Stewart and Grace Kelly star in Alfred Hitchcock’s classic thriller, which explores the role of the voyeur. After breaking his leg during a shoot, photo-journalist L.B. ‘Jeff’ Jeffries (Stewart) is forced to spend a humid summer recuperating in his Greenwich Village apartment. Wheelchair-bound he spies on his neighbours from his apartment window and becomes convinced one of them has committed murder. Suspenseful, witty and at times funny, this is a film is as much about the audiences complicity as it is the protagonists.

Where the City Can’t See (Dir. Liam Young / 2016)

Commissioned by AND, directed by Liam Young and written by sci-fi author Tim Maughan, Where the City Can’t See is set in a not-too-distant future where Google maps, urban management systems and CCTV surveillance are not only mapping our cities, but ruling them. More info











Hacked Circuit (Dir. Deborah Strapman / 2014)

A single-shot, choreographed portrait of the Foley process, revealing multiple layers of fabrication and imposition. While portraying sound artists at work, typically invisible support mechanisms of filmmaking are exposed, as are, by extension and quotation, governmental violations of individual privacy.

The scene being foleyed is from The Conversation where Gene Hackman’s character Harry Caul tears apart his room – the look of Caul’s apartment mirrors the visual chaos of the Foley stage. This mirroring is also evident in the dual portraits of sonic espionage expert Caul and Foley artist Gregg Barbanell, for whom professionalism is marked by an invisibility of craft.

Hacked Circuit_web_only










Artist-led Tours

Tickets FREE, but booking is essential

During the day (November 12th) there will be a number of unique tours of the former Pilkington Glass HQ, led by artist Michelle Browne. Focussing on themes of transparency, invisibility and labour, they will look at the manufacturing of glass as a way to explore urban transformation, memory and labour.

Michelle Browne is an artist and curator based in Dublin, Ireland. She studied Sculpture at the National College of Art and Design, Dublin and is currently completing a Masters in Fine Art at the Dutch Art Institute in Arnhem, Holland. Much of her work is performance based and collaborative and she has performed and exhibited both nationally and internationally. Find out more at

How to Book

Bookings for all the film screenings – on 12 November and Board Room Screenings – and for the Artist Led Tours, can be done at Eventbrite.


Visit the Alexandra Park venue page for the address, location and directions.


The Invisible City is curated and produced by Heart of Glass and Abandon Normal Devices, in partnership with Alexandra Park (St Helens) Management Limited. This project is supported by Arts Council England and Film Hub North West Central, proud to be a member of the BFI Film Audience Network.