Combine juxtaposes extracts from Double Harvest, The Great Jib and Iron Ore in Britain with my own previously unseen footage filmed at the Ketton Cement Works in Rutland. The resulting film shines a light on unseen labour to challenge complacency surrounding industry’s use of human resources.

At the Ketton Cement Works I learnt that a significant challenge in cement manufacture is securing a consistent supply of high calorific fuel for the kilns. One primary substitute fuel is meat and bone meal (MBM) from the meat processing industry. In Double Harvest, we get fleeting glimpses of the workers as they yield to the Sisyphean task of feeding the blast furnaces, poorly protected by limited Personal Protective Equipment, sweating, their own meat and bone thrust between machine parts.

Combine merges past and present to imaginatively explore continuity and ambiguity of purpose.

The synchronicity between scenes echoes the thoughts of the late Tony Benn: “Every generation must fight the same battles again and again. There’s no final victory and there’s no final defeat.”

Commissioned by Fermynwoods Contemporary Arts as part of Triple Harvest, 2020.

http://fermynwoods.org/combine-amanda-loomes/