Jenny Baines
Untitled (Kokkola), 2011

Untitled (Kokkola) is a brief snapshot of ice swimming, a popular tradition in northern Europe. Shot on location in Kokkola, Finland, the film retains a certain romanticised quality of found or archive footage. Bathers are observed climbing into a frozen pool of water, smiling as they submerge themselves. The film cuts unexpectedly, just as the bathers disappear beneath the surface, only to return to the beginning as more bathers enter and disappear, framing an endlessly repeating cycle.

Oliver Bancroft
Psara's Donkey, 2011
7' 35"

Psara's Donkey follows the existence of the last remaining donkey of Psara, a remote Greek Island in the Aegean Sea. The camera quietly captures the tedium of this creature's daily life with long meditative shots that seem to imbue the donkey with human feelings and emotions. The film is intended as a tribute to the island's past, representing near obsolete forms of existence, suggesting an uncertain, unknown future for its inhabitants.

Lindsay Foster
Downward Ascension (Ode to the Flâneur), 2010
8' 42"

In the desire to escape the confines of the urban and to encounter new and unknown experiences, the artist setout on an unmapped journey. Engaging with so-called outsider communities, Foster confronts the social isolation of the individuals she meets, becoming integrated within their community. Downward Ascension is a record of her own interactions with this society, documenting the relationships she forms and the strong bonds created.

Alex Pearl
Thaumatrope, 2011
0' 26"

A popular Victorian toy, the thaumatrope is an important antecedent to the moving image. Pearl uses this simple device to animate a picture of a plane in flight. The use of thaumatropic animation infuses the film with a frenetic visual quality, giving the plane the illusion of terrible speed as it firstly charges towards the mountains, then, nose down, careers towards the ground.

Jessica Sarah Rinland
Nulepsy, 2010
8' 24"

An elderly man recounts his lifelong experiences suffering from a disease called Nulepsy which causes him to black out and frantically remove his clothes. The narrator recalls different episodes in his adolescence which are in turn humorous and moving. Nulepsy is however a fictitious disease created by the artist as a device for experimenting with narrative deceptions and contrasting forms of reality within the conventions of film documentary.

Francesca Banchelli
Antitesi Popolare, 2008
9' 50"

Antitesi Popolare follows the actions of a small group of people looking for contact with a flock of Cormorans. Journeying through the Cormorans' habitat the group are spurred on, more by childlike curiosity than the possibility of scientific discovery. The action begins in the early morning and concludes in the afternoon without any real contact with the birds being made.

Part Two
Selected by Ben Rivers

Ben Rivers trained at Falmouth School of Art. His practice as a filmmaker treads a line between documentary and fiction. Often following and filming people who have in some way separated themselves from society, the raw film footage provides Rivers with a starting point for creating oblique narratives and imagining alternative existences in marginal worlds. He has received a number of commissions and awards including the London Artists Film and Video Award, 2007, the Paul Hamlyn Award for Artists, 2010 and the Baloise Art Prize, 2011. Recent solo shows include Sack Barrow, Statements, Art Basel / Hayward Gallery, London; Slow Action, Matt's Gallery, London and Origin of the Species, Kate MacGarry, London.

Jim Trainor
The Bats, 1999

Hand-drawn animated short, The Bat's, is part nature documentary, part moral tale. Narrated in the first person by one of a family of bats, the voiceover offers a reflective account of his day-to-day existence, delivered with a disarming honesty far removed from the cutesy caricatures of conventional creature animation. The bat's frank story emphasises aspects of animal life such as rampant procreation and immoral behaviours that humans tend to gloss over. However, the bats are also invested with a belief in god and an awareness of their own mortality, allying them with humanity.

George Kuchar
Weather Diary #3, 1988

A fascination with extreme weather conditions attracted Kuchar to ‘Tornado Alley' in Oklahoma where, for over two decades, he made an annual pilgrimage with his 8mm camcorder to record the Weather Diaries. A self- proclaimed ‘storm squatter' with little meteorological expertise, Kuchar documents atmospheric changes largely from the safety of his motel room. In equal parts personal diary, travelogue, and documentary, Weather Diary #3 records Kuchar's daily routine whilst waiting for the big storm. Inevitably Kuchar's camera turns on himself, creating an intimate portrait, which includes detailed accounts of his bowel movements.

Courtesy of Lux