Amy Pennington


Self-proclaimed future award-winning documentary filmmaker Amy Pennington presents their landmark documentary series TOPS, 2023. The film explores a question that often defines the Trans Masc experience in the UK today – 'What TOP did you wanna wear after TOP surgery?'

In this profound and intimate film, Amy meets four unique individuals: a powerlifter and gay-games Olympian hopeful; a housing-officer-slash-actor; an Essex filmmaker; and an occasional model and equality diversity and inclusion specialist.

Pennington's curiosity illuminates their experiences through unlimited access into their lives, homes and bags of dicks. Insightful and invasive, TOPS allows audiences to fully understand the question on everyone's lips - 'What TOP did you wanna wear after TOP surgery?'.

TOPS is a genre-busting documentary with fictionalised elements inspired by the chaotic, brash, self-deprecating and clueless style of British 1990s and 2000s television. The film is presented by an ever-so-slightly desperate and lonely version of the artist, who is willing to steal footwear and camp out in the gardens of interviewees for ultimate unencumbered access and the potential of their first-ever trans friend.

TOPS gives space to the experience of top surgery, and individuals who have experienced the procedure, without being another sad or gory story. Your nipples might fall off – but you can still have a lol.

This artwork is co-commissioned by Homotopia, Studio Voltaire and Islington Mill with funding from Arts Council England.

  • Runtime: 69 mins

Tickets: £5 Standard, with pay-what-you-can options

Proceeds from ticket sales will be donated to Gendered Intelligence. Please note, TOPS contains some swearing and references to surgery.

  1. Amy Pennington (they/them) is a northerner - they think it’s important you know that. They make films, performances and collaborative projects about class, sexuality and gender. Amy has made art with their family, residents in a care home and clients at a queer hair salon. They like wearing wigs and telling stories. Their work challenges who gets to express themselves, share their experiences and under what terms. Growing up, TV was their best teacher, so using humour and pop culture come naturally. They employ these tools to gently pull at the seams of what is ‘acceptable’ or ‘normal’, whether that is critiquing the health and wellbeing industry, what kinds of Trans stories are told, or who we imagine our queer ancestors to be.

    Amy has made work within institutions as well as self-organised groups and in the public realm. They have been commissioned by TATE Liverpool, Battersea Art Centre, Studio Voltaire, PEER Gallery, In-situ, QUAD, Heart Of Glass, Left Coast, Homotopia, The National Festival of Making, Newlyn Gallery and LADA.

    Their films have been shown in a number of film festivals including Leeds international, GAZE, Queer Fringe! Filmpride Brighton & Hove. Where’s Danny? won the Iris Prize Community Award 2023. They were a finalist in screenshot 2023 a competition for comedy writer-performers hosted by Sister Pictures and South of the River Pictures.

  2. Director, Writer, Editor, Executive Producer: Amy Pennington
    Co-Director, DOP and A Cam Operator: Jos Bitelli
    Interviewees: Maz Murray, Yaz Senghor, Elliot Davis, Oskar Marchock
    Editors: Amy Pennington, Jos Bitelli, Jessica Crooks, Noemi Varga
    Producers: The Uncultured - Ash Bowmott and Laura Sweeney
    Music: Rubie
    B Cam Operator: Tilly Garland (Episode Maz)
    B Cam Operator: Samara Addai (Episodes Yaz, Elliot, Oskar)
    Camera assistant: Rowan Needham (Episode Yaz)
    Sound: Toby Burroughs (Episode Maz)
    Sound: Felix Waverley-Hudson (Episodes Yaz, Elliot, Oskar)
    Costumes: Jordan Taylor +Threadmaidens
    Graphics: Alex Lundström
    Production assistant: Roshana Rubin Mayhew
    Equipment and support: Grey Moth
    Access Consultant: Abi Palmer

  3. This film is subtitled, This event is seated. The room will be dark.

    Studio Voltaire aligns with the Social Model of Disability. This means we are committed to making our venue accessible to everyone and to creating equal and equitable experiences for all people.

    Studio Voltaire has step-free access throughout our gallery, event studio, cafe, shop and garden. Accessible toilets and baby change facilities are available on the ground and first floor. All our toilets are self-enclosed and all-gender.

    If you have any questions or need assistance with your visit please contact us on +44 (0) 20 7622 1294 or email

  4. Gendered Intelligence, established in 2008, is a registered charity that works to increase understandings of gender diversity and improve the lives of trans people. Their vision is of a world where diverse gender expressions are visible and valued, and where trans, non-binary, gender diverse and gender-questioning people live healthy, safe and fulfilled lives. They are a trans-led and trans-involving grassroots organisation with a wealth of lived experience, community connections of many kinds, and a depth and breadth of trans-community knowledge that is second to none. The team has a variety of professional and academic specialisms and qualifications including training and facilitation, youth work, policy, the arts, and doctorates in trans-related studies.

Screening 1

Thursday 7 December 2023, 6.30 pm

Screening 2

Thursday 7 December 2023, 8 pm

Studio Voltaire
1A Nelsons Row
London SW4 7JR

Open Wednesday–Sunday, 10 am–5 pm.

Registered Charity No: 1082221. Registered Company No: 03426509. VAT No: GB314268026