Tate Kids

TATE KIDS

John Latham, Film Star, 1960

John Latham made this artwork out of books, plaster and metal. He painted the pages of the books twelve different colours, and the books can be opened at different pages -so the artwork can look different to how you see it now. He made a short film using the painting, where the books open and close on different pages. There aren’t any people in the film – maybe that’s why he called the painting Film Star, because the painting is the star of the film!

Have a think about this artwork – does the title change the way you see it? What do you think it represents? Are these the open mouths of baby birds waiting to be fed, or half eaten hamburgers that have been thrown onto the ground? Use the space below to write the story behind the artwork, or tell us about how you would use the artwork in a film.

© The estate of John Latham (noit prof. of flattime), courtesy Lisson Gallery, London

20 stories about “John Latham, Film Star, 1960”

  1. amy, age 9, from england

    one day there were a person called Lilly and she didn’t like anything what upset her.

  2. DSFAGHBbn, age 127, from asdfghj

    BOOM BASH THE THUNDER ROAR

  3. danielle, age 8, from dg78923 yt4g3y

    hi i am danielle i am 8 yaer oat i live i catfoed and my batday is 19 of feburere it is today bye the end of my story i hop you came next time bye

  4. Kate, age 9, from England

    The Queen was OK with jam tarts. Her greedy husband could eat a horse in thirty seconds, in fact, he had broken a world record for it. But the Queen couldn’t stick him, let alone horses. The reason was, her own horse, Arnoldius, was born exactly sixty weeks before this happened, and they were hosting an anniversary party to celebrate, instead of a christening (bear in mind horses don’t usually have christenings) and as the last guest, the vet called Kelly Beadingsum, arrived, she stated she wanted a talk with the Queen over a jam tart. The Queen was too embarrassed to tell Kelly she didn’t like jam tarts, but Kelly pulled her onto a satin couch and shoved a jam tart into the Queen’s mouth.
    The Queen liked jam tarts.

  5. Suzie, age 12, from China

    Maria and her Family have been in The new place for 2 Months now. She hates it, Her friends, Anne, Kelly And Tracey are not there to play with, There are no friendly people or fruit and veg stalls! Can Maria bare it here?

  6. Victoria., age 6, from Wales

    One day there was a rock star and The Rock star was crying because of his own. Butterfly

  7. Aoife pearson, age 9, from London

    Art , what would the world be like without it ? RED BLUE and CARD ! Buttons and paint . There is art all around us Many pepole dont understand art , I do ONLY because my dads an artist and we love to go to art gallerys
    Poem is art
    so this is ART

  8. precious, age 7, from ENGLAND

    Once upon a time there was an rude girl that she doesn’t now what was 1 plus 1 she tried to work it out she got it wrong she said 100 but her mum said that is wrong she went to school everyone laugh at her she think and think and think AND THINK she said is it 2 she said to her teacher and she said….. YES

  9. PRECILLA, age 0, from England

    Hi my name is Precilla i am 0 yeah old

  10. Kiera, age 8, from USA

    this piece of art looks like a pepparoni pizza

  11. LEWIS, age 10, from SCOTLAND

    OUNS APON A TIME THERE LIFD A PIRATE NAMED KAPTONG UNDER PANTS AND HE WAS RICH AND WISE HE WAS SO GOOD AT WRITEN SONGS LIKE JUST CANT GET ENOUTHE

  12. Milly-Lane, age 12, from Scotland

    “I want to be famous” Said 13 year old Hannah.
    “Who do you want to be as famous as pet?” Asked dad.
    “John Latham!” Replied Hannah, “Why HIM?” asked Dad, shuffiling the news paper, Hannah had her mouth an O shape “Dad! He is an Australian Orthinologist!”
    Dad did not know what an ‘Ornithnology’ was “An Ornithnologist is a person who studies about birds. I love birds!” Hannah ran to her room, Looking through her book shelf, Discovering books on Birds. 12 Years later, When Hannah was 25, She became an Ornithologist! She was a Great bird watcher and Even published a book “Thank you John Latham!”

  13. Jasmine Reyes, age 10, from ganisvall

    ”Mom let me go pleas”said Angelina .”Sorry but we can’t oford for you to go”said Angelina’s mom.As you can see Anglina’s mom didn’t let her go to Paris so Angelina got up and left and went outside as you can see she is rely mad.Soon Miss popaular came (Samantha)and the others.that was just a discribtion now something is going to happend to angelina all finshed it next time see ya

  14. Lilly,with help from her daddy, age 3, from London

    ONE DAY A PERSON MADE A MESS THE END.

  15. shannon, age 11, from englaned

    I want to be famous” Said 13 year old Hannah.
    “Who do you want to be as famous as pet?” Asked dad.
    “John Latham!” Replied Hannah, “Why HIM?” asked Dad, shuffiling the news paper, Hannah had her mouth an O shape “Dad! He is an Australian Orthinologist!”
    Dad did not know what an ‘Ornithnology’ was “An Ornithnologist is a person who studies about birds. I love birds!” Hannah ran to her room, Looking through her book shelf, Discovering books on Birds. 12 Years later, When Hannah was 25, She became an Ornithologist! She was a Great bird watcher and Even published a book “Thank you John Latham!”

  16. Thomas Antony Japes, age 9, from England, UK

    mosaic mad messes

  17. Sparkle4Art, age 0, from England

    It is probably made out of wood, plastic and many other materials. The red drawings are thought to be lips and the only blue one is a tounge. Susanna

  18. georgia, age 11, from australia

    If you can see me in john Lathams art work you are very lucky. I live under the biggest object you may call it a book, paper or card board. Every morning I fix what I call my town and what john calls his art work. To some of you this may look like powder and red paint but there Is a secret behind this art work would you like to hear more.

    my name is zoe and I am going to tell you the secret to John lathams art.
    In 1960 john was watching a film about a famous star in the sky who wanted to shine the brightest she read books from earth that floted up with the dead and well im not telling you about the film I am telling you about the art work any way when he finished with the film and no one wanted it he thought he would start on an art he did not mean to but he placed the film in the middle and rubbish .he turned around and said “my master piece this is it “

  19. Lily-Jane, age 8, from England

    This is a mosaic. I’ve done on at at school before it was a clock for my brother.
    This mosaic you have to agree with me that it is pretty. There are red and blue jewels on. If you have seen the picture before you can see how they have done it.

    If you look at it closely it looks like baby birds waiting to be fed.

  20. giorja, age 10, from russell island

    boom boom the thunder hit the house. jack ran out to see what it was it was thunder he thort to him self while he thort his artyy vars smash on to the ground leving nothing but glass.