The Nostalgic Gardens of Derek Jarman's England

Author: Lavinia Brydon

  • The Nostalgic Gardens of Derek Jarman's England


    The Nostalgic Gardens of Derek Jarman's England



This article seeks to explore Derek Jarman’s vision of England as suggested by the nostalgic gardens that frequent his films. With particular consideration of Jubilee (1978), The Last of England (1987) and The Garden (1990) it discusses the methods and motivations that lie behind Jarman’s construction of these gardens as places that evoke multiple histories. In doing so, the article pays particular attention to how imaginative artistic choices allow Jarman’s personal memories to intertwine with the country’s long history, offering an engaging and instructive viewing experience. These include techniques such as flashbacks and rear projection, as well as the use of home movie footage and references to literary figures. The article argues that Jarman’s gardens are never solely suggestive of a longing for the past but also indicative of survival in the present and hope for the future. Indeed, they offer a means of maintaining tradition while advocating change. As such they are to be considered optimistic environments; spaces in which to rediscover and rebuild England.

How to Cite:

Brydon, L., (2013) “The Nostalgic Gardens of Derek Jarman's England”, Dandelion: Postgraduate Arts Journal and Research Network 4(2). doi:

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Published on
09 Dec 2013
Peer Reviewed