13/02/2017 — 13/02/2017


Ben Rivers

This programme of films by UK-based artist and filmmaker Ben Rivers includes the recent There Is A Happy Land Further Awaay (2015) and Things (2014), alongside two shorter early works The Coming Race (2007) and A World Rattled of Habit (2008). Across his practice, Rivers captures human interactions with remote landscapes and far of places, often referencing cinematic genres and iconography.

Artist and filmmaker Ben Rivers was born in Somerset in 1972 and is now based in London. He studied Fine Art at Falmouth School of Art, initially in the sculpture department before moving into photography and super-8 filmmaking. Since completing his degree, he has worked mainly with hand-processed 16mm film and is largely self-taught in this regard. In 1996, he co-founded the Brighton Cinemathèque, which he co-programmed until its demise in 2006.

His practice as a filmmaker treads the line between documentary and fiction. Often filming people who have in some way separated themselves from society, Rivers uses this raw footage as a starting point to construct oblique narratives that imagine alternative existences in marginal worlds.


There Is A Happy Land Further Awaay (2015) 16mm transferred to HD video, colour/B&W, sound, 20min

A World Rattled of Habit, 2008, 16mm transferred to HD video, B&W/colour, sound, 10 min

The Coming Race, 2007, 16mm transferred to HD video, B&W, 5 Min


He has been the recipient of numerous awards, including the Tiger Award for Short Film, International Film Festival Rotterdam (2015 & 2008); FIPRESCI International Critics’ Award, 68th Venice Film Festival (2011); Baloise Art Prize, Art Basel (2011) and Paul Hamlyn Foundation Award for Artists (2010). Solo exhibitions of his work have been held at Camden Arts Centre, London (2015); BBC Television Centre, London as part of an Artangel Open Commission (2015); Temporary Gallery, Cologne (2014); Douglas Hyde Gallery, Dublin (2013); Hepworth Wakefield (2012) and Hayward Gallery, London (2011). He recently curated the exhibition Edgelands (2015) at Camden Arts Centre and is currently a Radcliffe Fellow at Harvard University.


Image Credit: There Is A Happy Land Further Awaay, 2015, Courtesy Ben Rivers and LUX, London