STALACTITES Drama (8mins) 2015


A stark portrait of how illness can erode the intimacy and sensuality of even the strongest of couples.


Illness affects more than just the body. In Stalactites writer / director Alison Piper challenges the limits of empathy in her nuanced look at the human condition; the film is a tender glimpse in to a marriage crumbling under the weight of mortality. Alan is a man failing to communicate with his sick wife as he struggles to reconcile his waning attraction to her. He is a deeply flawed but relatable character, caught up in a morally ambiguous situation.


Stalactites is a film about suppression and came about through an interest in how illness can affect sexuality in relationships. This short film explores suppression as a facet of loss, and creates a largely subtextual dialogue between a husband and wife that both whispers and shouts as they struggle to communicate.

The film experiments with narrative form - much of the sound was recorded prior to the images, allowing the camera to respond to what the artists created sonically in each space. In this way, the story emerges in the gap between what is seen and what is heard.

This form invites an understanding of how communication between Alan and Linda takes place in the words they hold back; their relationship reveals itself to us through the emotions and thoughts they are keeping from each other.

All photographs and press material for Stalactites shot by Gemma Dagger