Libby Leshgold Gallery

Please join us for a screening of two films, Gates of Heaven and The Loved One, in conjunction with our exhibition Designing Death: An exhibition of contemporary funerary architecture and objects.

Both films explore, in different ways, the operation and economics of the funeral industry, complete with all of its emotional and spiritual resonances and contradictions.

Gates of Heaven (1978)
6pm (running time 85 minutes)

“Little Toby was put on this earth for two reasons: to love and to be loved.”

Gates of Heaven (1978, directed by Errol Morris) is a documentary about a California pet cemetery and all of the lives (and deaths) involved with it: its founders, employees, and humans mourning their companion animals. Shot in beautiful colour and edited from interviews that are by turns poignant, affectionate, angry, and absurd, it chronicles the difficulties and excesses of a highly specialized memorial business through the experiences of everyone involved.

The Loved One (1965)
7:45pm (running time 122 minutes)

“There's got to be a way to get those stiffs off my property!”

British director Tony Richardson, with screenwriters Christopher Isherwood and Terry Southern, adapted Evelyn Waugh’s 1948 satirical novel about the American funeral industry with a bizarre but fascinating cast and a decidedly 1960s spin. The story centres around the Whispering Glade cemetery, run by The Blessed Reverend (Jonathan Winters), assisted by master embalmer Mr. Joyboy (Rod Steiger) and unctuous coffin salesman Mr. Starker (Liberace). Drawn into this world by the death of his uncle Sir Francis Hinsley (John Gielgud) is British expatriate and failed poet Dennis Barlow (Robert Morse), who becomes involved in a scheme to free up cemetery space by sending remains into orbit, led by the Reverend’s huckster brother (also Jonathan Winters), and a pre-teen rocketry genius (Paul Williams).

Designing Death is an exhibition of contemporary funerary architecture and objects. The exhibition runs until April 21, 2019.

For further information please contact the Libby Leshgold Gallery.