Häxan (Witchcraft Through the Ages)

Häxan (Witchcraft Through the Ages)

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Benjamin Christensen | Sweden 1922 1928, 106 minutes | 6:30pm, Thursday 19 April at the IMA

This free screening of Häxan with live soundtrack is presented as a partnership between the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions, Queensland Film Festival and the Institute of Modern Art.

Grave robbing, torture, possessed nuns, and a satanic Sabbath: Benjamin Christensen’s legendary film uses its ostensibly serious exploration of the witches of the Middle Ages to produce a brew of the scary, gross, sensuous and darkly humorous. Upturning conventions it finds parallels between witches and (then) contemporary hysteria but also examines why these parallels appear.


D Benjamin Christensen S Benjamin Christensen C Johan Ankerstjerne E Edla Hansen
Language: Silent with English-subtitled intertitles
Distribution: Swedish Film Institute

Unrated 15+


With live score by Lucy Cliché and Naomi Blacklock

Introduced by Dr Charlotte-Rose Millar, a UQ Fellow in the Institute for Advanced Studies in the Humanities at the University of Queensland and an Associate Investigator with the ARC Centre of Excellence for the History of Emotions (Europe 1100‒1800). She is the author of the book Witchcraft, the Devil and Emotions in in Early Modern England and is the prize winning author for her articles on witchcraft, diabolism, emotions and sexual practices in early modern England.

Lucy Cliché has been a critical force in the Sydney DIY music and sound scene for over 10 years. Using an all hardware set-up her music delivers a hard-bitten exploration of how physicality and the ethereal can interact in music.

Naomi Blacklock is an Anglo-Indian artist who works through sound installation, text works and performance to explore mythologies regarding the witch archetype and harmful histories of gender and cultural identity. Her ritualised sound objects and performances are intended to amplify the body and the voice through performative bodily precision and aural screaming.

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