THE STIMMING POOL
(feature film in post-production)
Dirs. The Neurocultures Collective (Sam Chown Ahern, Georgia Bradburn, Benjamin Brown, Robin Elliott-Knowles, Lucy Walker) and Steven Eastwood
Prod. Chloe White & Steven Eastwood
UK. 67.00. S16mm (digital transfer)
Skip the test, drop the mask, stray through nested worlds rewilded by neurodivergence.
A B-Movie film club host introduces a lost animated horror movie; a young woman watches sequences in an eye tracking test; an office worker goes about their life, masking their autistic nature; a picture book tells the story of an enigmatic dog-human spirit watching over people with disabilities…
Co-created by the Neurocultures Collective (Sam Chown-Ahern, Georgia Bradburn, Benjamin Brown, Robin Elliott-Knowles, Lucy Walker) and artist-filmmaker Steven Eastwood, The Stimming Pool is a hybrid film that enters the possibilities of a world informed by neurodiverse perspectives. The film’s drifting form is built around the concept of an autistic camera, whose curiosity discovers a relay of subjects who stray through the world, revealing environments often hostile to autistic experience and quiet spaces that offer respite from them.
The film features a cast of autistic actors and non-actors, including neurodivergent performance artist Dre Spisto. It was shot on Super 16mm by cinematographer Greg Oke (Aftersun).
The project’s co-direction and apprenticeship structure offers opportunity, inclusion and visibility for neurodivergent creatives, who are often obliged to explain their identity to audiences rather than play a central part in how representations are formed. The film takes a progressive approach to film production, playing to the individual strengths and aspirations of Neurocultures Collective members, with every person contributing to the film’s authorship. This method seeks to explore how currently inadequate models of production might evolve to empower autistic artists, audiences, and communities.