The Lumière Reader presents

A series of documentary essay films exploring film, music and book publishing.

"The Lumière Reader presents" was funded in 2014 through the Digital Media Ignite Fund. The project comprises a series of three digital documentaries:

  • Land of the Long White Stain - a love letter to music on the margins
  • Paper Boat - moments in the life of a book
  • Out of the Mist - an alternate history of New Zealand cinema

NZ On Air funding: $27,760

Producer: Melinda Jackson
Directors: Claire Duncan, Alex Mitcalfe Wilson, Tim Wong
Production: The Lumiére Reader

The Lumière Reader presents was launched on 2 July 2015.

Watch all the films online here.

All the films received public screenings through various outlets and are being added to the National Digital Heritage Archive as well as NZ On Screen.


Land of the Long White Stain

Steven Huf Shab Orkestra

A love letter to music on the margins.

In this 27 minute film director Claire Duncan follows her musical comrades on a tour of New Zealand and creates a contemplative ode to a brood of genre-bending Auckland musicians. Featured artists include Girls Pissing on Girls Pissing, Seth Frightening and Shab Orkestra.

The film was released on 2 July 2015. 

This short film is like cheap red wine that tastes expensive. Drink it in. Claire Duncan, what you wrote and curated is so good. I’m less hashtag-less.” (Veronica C-P, Facebook)

Watch it here.


Paper Boat

Time Out Bookstore

Moments in the life of a book.

In this 24 minute long film Alex Mitcalfe Wilson charts the journey a book follows when it is published today. The film tells a story of creativity and commitment through the words of those who carry a text through each step of the journey: writers, editors, designers, printers, binders, booksellers and librarians.

The film was released on 1 September 2015.

The Lumière Reader has made a beautiful short film about the life of a book, from the moment of conception to the moment it is recommended by your most trusted librarian.” (The Antipodean Reader)

Watch it here.


Out of the Mist

The Navigator

An alternate history of New Zealand Cinema.

Two decades on from Cinema of Unease, Tim Wong's ambitious film essay contemplates the prevailing image of a national cinema. The feature-length (82 minutes) film explores some of the images and image-makers displaced by the popular view of filmmaking in New Zealand.

Narrated by Eleanor Catton, this film was originally funded and developed as a 30-minute digital documentary. Following an invitation to screen at the New Zealand International Film Festival, a feature-length film was developed.

An intellectually incisive and enthralling exploration of our national cinema that should basically be required viewing for all New Zealand filmmakers, critics and funding bodies.” (Judah Finnigan, Letterboxd)

There are so many interesting films mentioned here—I hadn’t heard of at least a third of them— all with excerpts so that you can get a sense of their style, and the ideas in play are so vital. Multiple viewings recommended." (David Larsen, Metro)

The film was released on July 20 2015, and played throughout July and August as part of the International Film Festival.

Watch it here.


Also funded by NZ On Air

Mahinga Kai

September 2015

Mahinga Kai

A series for anyone with a passion for food, culture and lifestyle.

Little Legends

February 2015

Little Legends

A creative and wonderful story-building app for young NZers.