CCA Highlights: September & October 2019

Autumn arrives at CCA with documentaries on global change and social justice, a rare Glasgow gig from indie-rock legend Stephen Malkmus and a detailed discussion on making sure sex toys are for all

Feature by Ben Venables | 02 Sep 2019
  • Grace Schwindt. Film still from Five Surfaces All White, 2019

Take One Action, Scotland's global change film festival returns 18-29 Sep to premiere international documentaries on social and environmental justice. There's a range of screenings and events including the film Push (19 Sep) in which Fredrik Gertten, the Swedish investigative filmmaker, tracks Leilani Farha, the lawyer and UN Special Rapporteur. She meets residents, campaigners and politicians in a bid to reclaim adequate housing as a human right, rather than as a commodity of the privileged. In Anthropocene: The Human Epoch (27 Sep), Canadian landscape photographer Edward Burtynsky collaborates with Jennifer Baichwal and Nicholas de Pencier, who co-wrote the book of the same title, for a cinematic meditation on the way humanity's signature has recklessly reshaped the Earth. 

Also on the big screen is the Scottish Queer International Film Festival (2-6 Oct). Back for its fifth birthday, the festival brings a mix of the best films, talks and workshops from the LGBTQIA+ communities. This year's theme is collectivity and maintaining solidarity across divides. One topical film from the programme is Man Made (3 Oct) which follows four trans men as they step onto the stage to compete in Trans FitCon, an all-transgender bodybuilding competition held in Atlanta, USA. Meanwhile, SQIFF also hosts Scotland's leading sex toy retailer, Luke+Jack, who present Accessible Toys (4 Oct). This discussion explores adult toys and paraphernalia designed for deaf and disabled consumers – pleasure should be for all, after all. Erotica author Tabitha Rayne – inventor of the Ruby Glow ride on vibrator – powers in to chat about sensuality and sexual empowerment. The sex blogger Girl on the Net will also be on hand to talk about audio porn and how sexy stories can be made more accessible through audio recordings. 

CCA offer the best in music with a rare outing from Pavement's leading man Stephen Malkmus (13 Aug). As one of the defining figures of 90s indie-rock it may be a surprise to learn his new solo album, Groove Denied, embraces the digital era, with Malkmus cranking open the laptop while tasting Berlin's club scene. The results are as pleasingly hard-to-categorise as ever from the icon of lo-fi post-punk. Another musician going solo is Scottish guitarist David MacGregor. His latest project Broken Chanter launches with support from Mammoth Penguins and Moonsoup (6 Sep). Composed in the Highlands and Islands, recorded in County Donegal, Broken Chanter is an album that loses none of MacGregor's existential, disconcerting sounds and unique vocals.

If you like music with the crackle and pop of old vinyl then the installation and performance of A Fall (31 Oct-10 Nov) rings out with the sound of collapse. As part of Sonica Glasgow, the visual-sonic festival from arts collective Cryptic, Belgian artist Karl Van Welden exhibits a single record (Carl Reinecke's understated Elegie). As the LP turns behind its glass case, ash gently falls on the vinyl. The installation's simplicity as the dust settles belies the depth of the questions it raises on our fates and decay.