A Record of Undying

George Saxon and D. John Briscoe (1949-2013)

3 October – 15 November 2014

“A masterpiece”
“A remarkable heart aching and beautiful experience”
“The performance was amazing, the anger & frantic energy”

These are audience responses to a groundbreaking exhibition of work exploring the last taboo, dying and death.

In 2013 artist George Saxon commenced development on the central work for exhibition, ‘A Record of Undying’ in collaboration with his late partner D. John Briscoe (1949-2013). With Briscoe as subject, he developed intimate photographs and films shot during the period leading up to and including his partner’s death. The depiction of death and dying and the artist’s response to loss is a recurring theme in the visual arts yet the depiction is usually literary or historical. This work is rooted in lived experience.

The exhibition presents a new large-scale installation of photographs and moving image alongside Blissfully Gunned Down (1980 – 2013), a live durational 16mm performance which reworks footage of D. John Briscoe’s staged death in 1980.

‘A Record of Undying’ is a profound and powerful experience;  an unflinchingly personal exploration of contemporary attitudes to critical illness and bereavement.

The exhibition opened on Friday 03 October and continues to  Saturday 15 November, open Thursday – Saturday, 12-5pm. Admission is free.


Events Programme:

Friday 03 October, 6-9pm
Exhibition Launch & Performance 

Join Vivid Projects for the launch of A Record of Undying, a groundbreaking exhibition exploring the last taboo: dying and death.

At 7.30pm artist George Saxon presents Blissfully Gunned Down (1980 – 2013), a live durational 16mm performance which reworks footage of D. John Briscoe’s staged death in 1980. The performance will be repeated for Digbeth First Friday at 8.30pm.


Thursday 23 October, 7pm (admission £2/ Black Hole Club members free)
Death and the Moving Image

A one-off panel discussion unpicks themes from the exhibition including the depiction of death in visual art, bereavement, death and dying.

Panellists include George Saxon (Artist), Yasmeen Baig-Clifford (Exhibition Curator and Director of Vivid Projects), Dr Michele Aaron (Senior Lecturer in Film Studies at University of Birmingham).

Capacity limited, advance booking recommended. Book your tickets here

Thursday 30 October, 3-4pm (admission free)
Artist & Curator Talk

Join artist George Saxon and curator Yasmeen Baig-Clifford for a guided tour through the exhibition and a conversation exploring the project and its themes. Please email info@vividprojects.org.uk for student or group bookings. 

Friday 07 November, 12-7.30pm (admission free)
Exhibition Late Opening

A final chance to see  George Saxon perform Blissfully Gunned Down (7pm) plus late opening as part of Digbeth First Friday.


A Record of Undying gratefully acknowledges support from The Henry Moore Foundation, The National Lottery through Arts Council England, and Invacare.

Image courtesy George Saxon and D. John Briscoe (1949-2013)