Dancing Ledge by Derek Jarman
"What started as a book on the frustration of funding led to the writing of an autobiography at forty... I had so little to do in the daylight hours, I stayed up late unbuttoning Levis in back rooms."
In 1984 at the age of 40, the polymath film-maker Derek Jarman began to write his journals. In the first of these diaries, Dancing Ledge, we see his origins as a young artist, written with Jarman's distinctive immediacy, curiosity, and candour.
Behind-the-scenes of his first controversial films and stage designs, at glamorous launch parties with friends like David Hockney, Ossie Clarke and Patrick Proktor, to the trials of securing funding, Dancing Ledge is a coming-of-age memoir for all fledgling artists. Dancing Ledge also chronicles a unique time in British history, capturing gay nightlife from the end of the war to the beginning of the AIDS epidemic.
"Jarman writes in lucid, accessible, and evocative prose. His highly articulate musings on contemporary art and cinema (neither of which has his approval) are both thought-provoking and interesting." - Library Journal
"Jarman's light illuminates the wilderness as brightly as ever." - New Statesman
"This brutally candid memoir by British artist and filmmaker Jarman offers a glimpse into the making of such controversial films as Sebastiane, The Tempest, and Caravaggio. Writing in a diary format, Jarman jumps back and forth in time, discussing his acceptance of his homosexuality at age 16 and his strong belief that a fully realized sexuality must drive art and politics." - Publishers Weekly
Imprint: Vintage Classics
Publication Date: 3 march 2022