5 March 2013

Both notorious in their own way, this double bill of Pink Flamingos and Pink Narcissus is the perfect way to open the film programme for The Art of Pop Video exhibition. These two darkly comic cult 70s classic are credited with making bad taste fashionably cool.

Pink Flamingos stars the notorious transvestite Divine who must battle with Connie and Raymond Marble, a sleazy married couple, who attempt to steal her title of 'the filthiest person alive'. Along with her elderly egg-loving mother Edie, delinquent son Crackers and travelling companion Cotton, Divine embarks on a quest to destroy the Marbles because of their "first-degree stupidity" and "assholism".

The film was banned in Canada, Norway and Australia and it provoked extreme reactions and criticism on its release in 1972. However it has gone on to become a cult classic, widely regarded as one of John Waters best films and it was included in Channel 4's 50 Films to See Before you Die list. Across the world, the film now regularly screens at sold out showings with audience participation and interaction from the movie's die hard fans.

The second part of the double bill provides the rare opportunity to see James Bidgood's controversial Pink Narcissus on the big screen. 

Pink Narcissus is the story of Pan, a young hustler, who imagines stories and adventures where he is the lead character, from being a matador in Spain, a roman slave to the leader of a male hareem. Pink Narcissus is a bona fide queer masterpiece which the BFI described as 'a breathtaking and outrageous erotic poem'.

The entire film was shot on location in director James Bidgood's small New York apartment, including all the so-called 'outdoor' scenes. James Bidgood initially declined to be associated with the film and was credited as 'Anonymous' on the films initial release, however he was identified after a lengthy search and is now widely acknowledged as the director of this classic piece of cinema.

Tickets for both films are available online, from the Box Office, or by phone on 08719025737

The Art of Pop Video is the first exhibition of its kind in the UK and opens at FACT on 14 March.