The Arts of Improvisation

A Listening Eye: The Films of Mike Dibb

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Past Event

This event was on Thu 18 Feb, 7pm


One of Dibb’s abiding interests has been music, and specifically jazz, where spontaneous creative innovation is paramount. However improvisation also extends to the filming process, ever responsive to the needs of the moment. In a conversation ranging from Miles Davis to Keith Jarrett, and from Cuban music to Astor Piazzolla’s tangos and the exuberant jazz/rock marriage of Barbara Thompson and Jon Hiseman, Mike will be joined by the award-winning essayist and novelist Geoff Dyer

Films are available to view in advance from the main homepage A Listening Eye: The Films of Mike Dibb.

Available to view 29 Jan – 4 Feb

What’s Cuba Playing At?, 1985, 75’
Classically Cuban, 1983, 60’
Tango Maestro: the life and music of Astor Piazzolla, 2005, 86’

Available to view 5-11 Feb

Jazz, Rock and Marriage, 1979, 60’
Barbara Thompson’s Paraphernalia, 1979, 45’
Barbara Thompson: Playing Against Time, 2012, 80’

Available to view 12-18 Feb

The Miles Davis Story, 2001, 124’
Keith Jarrett: The Art of Improvisation, 2005, 86’

Available to view 19-25 Feb

Red Ladder’s ‘Taking Our Time’, 1977-78 60’
Fringe Benefits, 70’s political theatre songs 1980, 50’I Could Read The Sky, 2005, 25’
Mark Anthony Turnage, 2002-03, BBC, 30’


About Geoff Dyer

Geoff Dyer is the author of Jeff in Venice, Death in Varanasi and three previous novels, as well as nine non-fiction books. Dyer has won the Somerset Maugham Prize, the Bollinger Everyman Wodehouse Prize for Comic Fiction, a Lannan Literary Award, the International Center of Photography’s 2006 Infinity Award for writing on photography and the American Academy of Arts and Letters’ E.M. Forster Award. In 2009 he was named GQ’s Writer of the Year. He won a National Book Critics Circle Award in 2012 and was a finalist in 1998. In 2015 he received a Windham Campbell Prize for non-fiction. His books have been translated into twenty-four languages. He currently lives in Los Angeles where he is Writer in Residence at the University of Southern California.

Dibb Pic 2 with John Berger filming Pig Earth 1979

A Listening Eye: The Films of Mike Dibb

This comprehensive online retrospective offers global audiences a rare opportunity to encounter the work of a filmmaker for whom culture and society, art and life are indivisible.

Access Information

The Whitechapel Gallery is committed to making all of our events as accessible as possible for every audience member. Please contact if you would like to discuss a particular request and we will gladly discuss with you the best way to accommodate it.  Further information about access at the Gallery is available here.

About This Event 

  • This event takes place online only 
  • You can access this event for free through this web page and also on the Whitechapel Gallery’s YouTube Channel, here. 
  • This event is suitable for those over the age of 16 
  • We are unable to provide British Sign Language interpretation for this event 
  • We are unable to provide live closed captioning or CART for this event.  
  • As the event is scheduled for a total of one hour, we will not take a rest break. 
  • As the event is being live streamed, you can access it from your home if you have access to an internet connection 
  • We do not yet know if we will be able to make the recording available afterwards. 

This information will be updated where required.