Fredrick Spencer Chapman filming with a cine
camera in Tibet. Photograph by Evan Yorke
Nepean, 1936. PRM 2001.35.213.1The Museum has not been an active collector of film material over the years, yet a small collection has nonetheless built up, often as a form of documentation accompanying a donation of artefacts, or for teaching purposes. Some of the film material is unique, and of significant historical importance, such as the films of Frederick Spencer Chapman made from the 1930s onwards in Tibet, Greenland and Africa, Beatrice Blackwood in Papua New Guinea in 1936 and Ursula Graham Bower in Manipur in 1939. Digitization of collection continues where funding permits, but pre-digital formats are not supported for viewing within the Museum. Films available for viewing online are listed below.
In 2011 the Museum collaborated with the Oxford Academy of Documentary Film and Screen South to produce the documentary Captured by Women, produced by Alison Kahn, which drew on the films of Ursula Graham Bower and Beatrice Blackwood from the 1930s. Both the documentary and the original films featured in it are available to view via the links below.
A Stone Age People in New Guinea by Beatrice Blackwood (1936-7)
Culture and Crafts in Manipur by Ursula Graham Bower (1939)
East African films by Jean Brown (1970s)
Ladakh film by Major Peter Hailey (c.1939-45)
Captured by Women by Alison Kahn (2011)