Maria Anastassiou: Life in the UK

Maria Anastassiou:

Life in the UK

Maria Anastassiou presents ‘Life in the UK’, a filmic response to the historic point of entry for immigrants coming into the UK – Tilbury in Essex.

Set against the transient landscape of the Thames Estuary and laden with traces of the ever shifting global narratives of commerce and migrations, Anastassiou spent the last year connecting with local refugee and migrant groups, including Romanian workers, Nigerian women asylum seekers and Filipino seafarers.

Having recently applied for and received UK citizenship herself, Anastassiou explores what “Life in the UK” (the title of the booklet required to be studied by those seeking UK citizenship) means to others seeking to live in the UK. With a lightness of touch she questions official narratives by revealing the lives of immigrants living and working in Tilbury – and by extension, the contribution they make to British society.

Maria Anastassiou (b. Cyprus 1982) is a filmmaker based in Essex who screens her work internationally. Her work is informed by experimental ethnographic approaches to documentary and structuralist film traditions, using the filmmaking process as an entry point into responding to place, historical narrative and communities.

New Geographies, is a three-year project which highlights overlooked or unexpected places across East Anglia, redrawing the map of the region with places important to those living here. It is funded by the Arts Council of England, the Big Lottery and is supported by CVAN and the University of Essex.