Blue Black Permanent

A woman sits on a wall holding a book to her chest as sea spray splashes up just behind her.

Still from Blue Black Permanent, directed by Margaret Tait, 1992. Courtesy, British Film Institute.

This year marks the centenary of Scottish film-maker and poet Margaret Tait’s birth. To celebrate the occasion, Towner will screen a brand-new restoration of Blue Black Permanent.

By the time she came to make Blue Black Permanent, her only feature and the first Scottish feature directed by a woman, Margaret Tait was in her seventies, a veteran avant-garde filmmaker with over thirty short films to her name, spanning all the way back to the 1950s.

The film was shot on location and moves fluidly between Edinburgh and Tait’s home of the Orkney Islands. It stars Celia Imrie as Barbara, a woman attempting to come to terms with her mother’s death through her childhood memories. Margaret Tait referred to her own work as ‘film-poems’ and Blue Black Permanent is no exception: a haunting and magical film, filled with flashbacks and dream sequences.

This screening is taking place as part of CINECITY Film Festival 2018, 9-25 November. To see the full programme, visit their website:

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