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Film | An Evening with Derek and Friends

We are pleased to offer this event as part of our online Public Programme. Available as film only.

Hosted by journalist and BBC TV presenter Evan Davis, this panel discussion with Maria Balshaw (Director of Tate), Julian Sands (actor), Howard Sooley (photographer) and Jon Savage (writer) delved into the art and culture that inspired Jarman during his lifetime, and the countless ways that his influence can still be felt in art, film and gardening today.

Each of the panel, who have unique ties to Jarman that span his lifetime and beyond, shared their memories of Jarman and how Prospect Cottage has inspired their own life and work.

Evan Davis and Howard Sooley spoke live from the Garden Museum, while the rest of our panel joined the discussion on Zoom from around the world.


  • Evan Davis

    Evan Davis

    Evan Davis is an economist, journalist, and BBC presenter. He presents the daily news show on Radio 4, PM. He also presents the popular BBC2 business reality show, Dragon's Den and the Radio 4 business discussion programme, The Bottom Line.
    Previously, he was the BBC's economics editor, then a presenter on the Radio 4 Today programme and for four years was the main presenter of Newsnight on BBC2. He has written several books, the latest of which is called "Post-Truth: Why We Have Reached Peak Bullshit and What We Can Do About It."

  • Maria Balshaw

    Maria Balshaw

    Maria Balshaw is Director of Tate, a role she has held since June 2017. She has overall responsibility for Tate’s strategic direction and day-to-day operations. She has worked to reframe the context and perspective of this long-established institution to engage with sensitive times, furthering the mission of inclusiveness and equality to connect with a wider audience. As Director, Maria is also the Accounting Officer appointed by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS).

    Previously, Maria was Director of the Whitworth, University of Manchester; Director of Manchester City Galleries; and Director of Culture for Manchester City Council.

    Maria holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in English Literature and Cultural Studies from the University of Liverpool and a Master of Arts degree in Critical Theory and a DPhil in African American Visual and Literary Culture from the University of Sussex. Maria is board member of the Clore Leadership Programme, Manchester International Festival and the National Museum Directors’ Council (NMDC) Executive Committee. In 2015, she was awarded a CBE for services to the arts.

  • Julian Sands

    Julian Sands

    Julian Sands met Derek Jarman in the late 1970s when he was still a student studying at the Central School of Speech and Drama. When he was still finding his feet in London’s theatres Jarman became a great friend and mentor, encouraging him to explore different strands of filmmaking.

    When Jarman was asked by Marianne Faithfull’s record company to make a number of videos to promote her new album Broken English, working in both 16mm and super-8 footage, he appointed Sands as his assistant to aid him with the experimental music video format. When David Bowie didn’t turn up to play the part of the Devil in Broken English Derek said, “Well, listen, Julian, you’re devilish. You can play it!” Sands remembers wearing a strange death mask, conveying the character’s body language in a Bowie-ish way.

    They also collaborated together writing a script for B Movie; Little England/A Time of Hope (1981).

  • Jon Savage

    Jon Savage

    Cultural commentator and journalist Jon Savage is the author of numerous books on popular culture, including England’s Dreaming: Sex Pistols and Punk Rock (Faber, 1991) (winner of the 1993 Ralph Gleason Award), Teenage: The Creation of Youth 1875–1945 and 1966: The Year the Decade Exploded (winner of the 2016 Penderyn Music Book Prize). His latest book, This Searing Light, the Sun and Everything Else: Joy Division, the Oral History, was published by Faber Social in April 2019.

  • Howard Sooley

    Howard Sooley

    In 1990, photographer Howard Sooley was commissioned to photograph Derek Jarman at Prospect Cottage. He soon became a regular visitor to Dungeness and remembers, “that summer I spent more and more time on the ness gardening with Derek and less time working as a photographer. The preceding few years I’d been working hard, travelling back and forth, but wound up exhausted rather than happy”.

    His iconic photos of Jarman and his garden were published in the book Derek Jarman's Garden (1995), alongside extracts from Jarman's garden journals.

Image: Banner photo courtesy of Ed Sykes