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The Circle and the Square

The Circle and the Square is the culmination of Suzanne Lacy’s three-year project in Pendle, which explored race, work, industry and capitalism through community conversation and activity at Brierfield Mill. The film shows performances by Shape Note singers and Sufi Chanting at the mill over three days. The film was screened at the mill, with an accompanying installation of 75 interviews on vertical screens, in which local people recounted their experiences and personal history of the mill.


Public conversations, including a presentation by Suzanne, accompanied the screening. Alongside this, a resource room was installed at Brierfield Town Hall that told the story of the process, including a timeline and access to footage of the community meetings. The purpose of this resource room was to show the collaborative journey of process, in which hundreds of people took part, and to emphasise that this film did not appear quickly, or without community effort. This resource room now tours with the film, which after its premiere in Brierfield was shown at the Sydney Biennial and was featured in Susanne’s retrospective in San Francisco.

This project was funded by - Arts Council England in partnership with Super Slow Way and Building Bridges 

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