Inhale Less

Mandy McIntosh and Joey Simons

Winter 2023/2024

For DOWSER Issue 9 (Winter 2023/2024), artist Mandy McIntosh and writer Joey Simons exhume a shared vision of working-class Glasgow. They find a cinematic imaginary in memories of cigarette coupons, soda waste and the gloam of a late-night stumble home. Through dialogue, the two conspire towards a filmic method, rendered from flashes of grief and joy, then laced with the findings of a nineteenth century medical officer, radio snippets, modernist literature and folk song.

Central to this burgeoning work of autotheory is a shared experience of watching Cranhill Films’ Clyde Film (1985). A document of Thatcherite era destitution, Clyde Film contrasts archival and contemporary 16mm footage: frantic industrial machinery followed by derelict warehouses; new postwar housing schemes revisited as condemned sites; happy workers and unemployment offices. Finding resolution in cultural production and community, the half-hour work offers a mode of proletarian expression liberated from any false promise of social mobility. Here, and in the film’s own socialised making, McIntosh and Simons draw means to counter the auteurist conventions of our neoliberal present.

The issue is illustrated with digital models newly created by McIntosh, documentation of past projects, and stills from Clyde Film, kindly restored and shared by Alistair McCallum.

DOWSER is a non-profit project. This chapbook is released as an open access online PDF and in a limited print edition of 200. These printed versions are available for a contribution of £2.50.

Issue 9 has been made possible with the support of Creative Scotland.

Cranhill Films, Clyde Film, 1985. Courtesy of Alistair McCallum.