Graeme Cole a filmmaker, writer and artist. Working mainly with Super 8, his films take the language of narrative-based genre movies and infect them with an absurdist sensibility. By adjusting the rules of the genre and inventing new ones, Mr Cole evokes a parallel world with an alternative cinema. A world where George Kuchar and Shuji Terayama play the multiplexes. His work celebrates the beautiful folly of humanity by integrating the flaws of our thinking into the structure and aesthetic of each movie.

In September 2013, Mr Cole became the first UK filmmaker to participate on the MFA program at Béla Tarr's film.factory. His first movie under Mr Tarr's mentorshop, Epizoda, is streaming on the TAO Films contemplative cinema platform, and his feature length student work Murmurs premiered as part of a solo exhibition in Mayfield. There is one further long-form work in post-production.

In 2016, Mr Cole held an artist residency at Kino Klub Split (Croatia) with the support of Arts Council England. In 2017-18, Mr Cole was EMAP/EMARE artist in residence at Association Bandits-Mages, Bourges (France) also supported by Arts Council England.

As a Jerwood First Film Shorts Prizewinner in 2002, Mr Cole benefitted from developing his work under the tutelage of Ted Braun, Associate Professor in Screenwriting at USC. After writing and directing two short films funded by the UK Film Council and North West Vision+Media, and the independently-financed festival favourite Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom, Mr Cole began production on his biggest project to date, the mid-length 'home-made' musical It's Nick's Birthday (view full film). With an award-winning score by regular collaborator Aidan Smith, the film drew comparisons to The Umbrellas of Cherbourg, Dancer in the Dark and the mumblecore movement. It's Nick's Birthday received a Special Mention from the Jury at IndieLisboa'09 and was selected for Co-Production Office's New Currents strand at the Sarajevo Film Festival.

After being selected to attend the Berlinale Talent Campus in 2008, Mr Cole developed a range of projects set in a re-wired, trash-movie Manchester of the not-too-distant future, a universe equal parts Cronenberg and Greenaway. His prose Glossary project is an artist's manifesto disguised as an incomplete guidebook to an impossible computer-generated filmmaking system. His unproduced feature screenplay Thirsty is described as the last pre-Singularity vampire flick.

In 2010, Mr Cole became artist-in-residence at Manchester's Nexus Art Cafe, where he filmed the first three episodes of his absurdist time-travel adventure serial, UNIVERSAL EAR. The production took the form of an open, participatory studio, where props were up-cycled, counter-intuitive techniques employed and mythology disseminated in a kind of 'happening'. The first episode to reach completion, A Flea Orchestra In Your Ear) premiered at Abandon Normal Devices in 2012. The project continues with new films, an ebook (written by Mr Cole under the Harley Byrne pseudonym) and stageplay, adding up to a multifarious but elliptical representation of a "lost science-fiction serial of the future".

More lately, Mr Cole established a roaming absurdist film academy, Unfound Peoples Videotechnic, as part of an artist's residency at Kino Klub Split, supported using public funding by the National Lottery through Arts Council England, during which he also produced a new artist video, Amateri, or The Lost Innocents, inspired by the historic Kino Klub culture of the region of the former Yugoslavia.

In 2017-18, Mr Cole was European Media Art Network EMARE artist in residence at Bandits-Mages, Bourges. Inspired by recent developments in ‘virtual heritage’ – hologram Buddhas, hologram dead pop stars, 3D printed replicas of the still-smoking remains of Syrian monuments - Mr Cole worked with regular collaborators and local participants to make an episode of his artist film cycle UNIVERSAL EAR. Set in a future city in which the concrete present overlaps with 3D, holographic, and augmented reality meta-levels in a manner that is not so much ‘mixed-reality’ as ‘mixed-authenticity’, the project manifested as a film, artist book, and videographic experiments, in a solo exhibition during Rencontres Bandits-Mages.

Along the way, Mr Cole has served on film festival juries and selection committees (most recently the international short film prize jury at IndieLisboa'13), consulted on the film projects of his esteemed peers, and worked as a script reader for the Royal Exchange Theatre in Manchester whilst continuing to carve out a niche as a low-budget, high-concept filmmaker and artist whose film sets are as fantastic, ambiguous and enchanting as the movies they produce.

Download CV (pdf)

Email graeme [at] zoomcitta dot co dot uk

Film & Video

Panic & Disgust In The 2015th Year 
2021 HD 80min

The Curse of the Phantom Tympanum
2019 Super-8 28min

2017 HD 72min

Amateri, or The Lost Innocents
2017 HD 20min

Epizoda ?
2016 HD 39min

Director (documentary)
2015 HD 15min

Lost In Bosnia (2014) (Anthology film segment: From The Ground To The Stars)
2014 iPad 5min

Rolling Around (music video)
2012 HD 5min

Girls Of Unfortunate Climes
2010 DV/Super-8mm/Mobile Phone 10min

A Flea Orchestra In Your Ear; Bloodless Offering In B-Minor; The Song of the Biscuit Crumb Algae
2010-12 Super-8mm 3x15min

6.92 Billion Portraits
2010-onwards Super-8mm

It’s Nick’s Birthday
Writer/Director/Additional music
2009 Super-8mm 35min

Pilot For A 22nd Century Sitcom
2005 DV 5min

A Case of Making the Knife Fit the Wound
2004 DV 17min Funded by North West Vision/UK Film Council

2003 DV 6min Funded by North West Vision/UK Film Council


UNIVERSAL EAR: The Curse of the Phantom Tympanum
2019. pp229. Published by L'Institute Zoom with the support of Arts Council England. 

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