Past Film/Video | Contemporary Screen | Documentaries

Being in a Place: A Portrait of Margaret Tait

(Luke Fowler, 2022)

Presented in collaboration with Cinéseries
Discussion follows

A stack of notebooks of multiple colors, on top is a light green notebook with handwritten notes on the cover.

Part archive, part poem, and part portrait, Luke Fowler’s latest film meditates on the life and legacy of one of Scotland’s most enigmatic filmmakers, Margaret Tait.

Being in a Place: A Portrait of Margaret Tait is a poetic film that weaves together unseen material, unpublished correspondence, diaries, notebooks, offcuts, rushes, and 16mm film-poems by filmmaker Margaret Tait. Fowler fuses his own lingering portraits and sensibilities with her footage and formal approaches. With careful consideration of what makes up a place, both filmmakers pay close attention to the small details and elements that are often overlooked or go unnoticed in the everyday landscape: a warm glance, a flower, a long drive down a foggy road, or a light flare.

This film features editing offcuts, original sound recordings, and rushes from multiple films by Tait, from One is One (1951) to Land Makar (1981). In addition, it features discarded rushes from Margaret Tait: Film Maker (1983) by Margaret Williams. Various materials discovered in the garden shed at a house where Tait had lived are also included in the film. Rejected by the National Library Scotland’s Moving Image Archive, this "fugitive archive" was preserved with care by Tait scholar and the film’s coproducer, Sarah Neely. (60 mins., DCP)

This month's Cinéseries was programmed by cofounder Natasha Woods. Join us after the screening for light refreshments and informal discussion facilitated by Cinéseries.  

Join the Wex's archivist Kristen Muenz Thursday, October 5, from 1 to 2 PM for a workshop on keeping your own archive in the Ohio State Fine Arts Library. This event is free with RSVP; email

Being in a Place, courtesy of Luke Fowler, the Estate of Margaret Tait, and the Modern Institute/Toby Webster Ltd, Glasgow.

More about Cinéseries

In the words of the members: Cinéseries is a student-led group that organizes monthly screenings in collaboration with the Wexner Center for the Arts. We aim to offer a space for students and the community to engage with film and expanded cinema from makers of a variety of backgrounds. We aspire to create an environment conducive to critical engagement by inviting filmmakers to showcase work that takes risks, challenges norms, and opens a conversation by devoting to a wide range of artist-centered and independent media.

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National Endowment for the Arts 
Ohio Humanities 

Rohauer Collection Foundation 

Ohio Department of Development 
Greater Columbus Arts Council 
The Wexner Family 
Institute of Museum and Library Services 
Ohio Arts Council 
Ohio State’s Global Arts + Humanities Discovery Theme 
The Columbus Foundation 
Nationwide Foundation 
Vorys, Sater, Seymour, and Pease 
Mike and Paige Crane 
Axium Packaging 
Nancy Kramer 
Ohio State Energy Partners 
Ohio History Fund/Ohio History Connection 
Larry and Donna James 
Bruce and Joy Soll 
Jones Day 
Alex and Renée Shumate 


Past Film/Video

Being in a Place: A Portrait of Margaret Tait