Professor Graham Ellard

Profile image of Professor Graham Ellard

Professor Graham Ellard

Professor of Fine Art

Central Saint Martins

Biography

As an artist Graham Ellard has collaborated with Stephen Johnstone since 1993. Their large-scale video installations and 16mm films have been exhibited internationally in museums and galleries including; Centre Georges Pompidou; Tate Liverpool; MOCA, Sydney; the V&A, London; MAXXI, Rome; Triennale Design Museum, Milan; the Aichi Triennale, Japan 2013; Anthology Film Archives, New York.

Focusing on the relationship between film and architecture their films explore the fundamental role of light in articulating modernist architectural space. Their abiding formal preoccupations - the camera's ability to produce ambiguities of scale, depth or shallowness, transparency and reflection, and the intersections of architectural planes, vistas, apertures and screens - centre on the altered forms of attention that come from using the camera to magnify and study architectural details and fleeting atmospheric effects.

Their book, Anthony McCall: Notebooks and Conversations was published by Lund Humphries, London, in March 2015.

Graham Ellard co-convenes, with Anne Tallentire, the research project Double agents at CSM. He has spoken at conferences internationally on the subject of the Artists’ Studio, and as part of the ongoing partnership with Acme Studios co-created and directs the CSM Associate Studio Programmes for recent graduates. The book co-edited with Jonathan Harvey; Studios for Artists: Concepts and Concrete. A collaboration between Acme Studios and Central Saint Martins was published in November 2015.

Research interests

Cinema and architecture, abstract film, the projected image, installation, drawing, the artists’ studio and the ways artists work.

Research statement

Exhibited works exist at the intersections of architecture and cinema and are preoccupied with the conventions and effects by which space is represented and 'produced' in the projected image. The approach is informed by an understanding of the effects of parallax, transparency and simultaneity, and the construction of voids, vistas, screens and apertures as common to both architecture and it's filmic representation.

Now working exclusively in 16mm film these resolutely analogue works propose a non-documentary, poetic, archaeological and archival probing of specific buildings – typically modernist, often ‘visionary’ – which emphasise the camera’s ability to produce ambiguities of scale, depth or shallowness and counter-intuitive forms of transparency and reflection and explore how a certain kind of European post-war architectural space can be rendered visible by film form without recourse to the conventions of storytelling.

These films are fascinated by the play of multiple reflection, prismatic refraction, montage and naturally occurring super-imposition as light penetrates architectural space. They centre on the altered forms of attention, and the resulting intensity of looking, that comes from using a lens to frame and magnify architectural details and fleeting atmospheric effects.

As co-convener with Anne Tallentire of the research project Double agents, Graham led the research project ‘The Artists’ Studio: form, function and future’, in partnership with Acme Studios. He co-created and directs the CSM/Acme Studios Associate Studio Programmes

Students

Current students and thesis titles

Eva Bensasson, Collective Urban Memory – Art & Fictional Histories.

Nathalie Khan, An Examination of the Role of Contemporary Fashion Media on the Representation of Surviving Dress.

Neus Miró Gonzalez, The Evolution of Exhibition Grammar since the 1960s due to the Assimilation of Moving Image Practices into the Art Gallery and Art Museum.

James Robertson, Dispersed Narrative; A Reading of Contemporary Film and Video in the Gallery Context, 2000-2012.

Eleanor Suess, Constructing the architectural moving drawing: transdisciplinary practices between architecture and artists’ film.

George Unsworth, The World is Getting Smaller: How spatial and temporal resources influence the production of contemporary art.

Completed students and thesis titles

Jane Norris, Viatopias.

Selected research outputs

  • Cut

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2015) Cut. [Art/Design Item]

  • For an Open Campus

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2015) For An Open Campus. 16mm film, colour, sound, 30 mins. 2015. Film still, detail. [Art/Design Item]

  • Anthony McCall: Notebooks and Conversations

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2015) Anthony McCall: Notebooks and Conversations. Hardback, 192 pages, 160 colour illustrations. Published by Lund Humphries, London. ISBN 978-1-84822-169-7, March 2015.

  • Everything Made Bronze

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2013) Everything Made Bronze. [Art/Design Item] 16mm film installation. 2013. Installation view; Satellite Gallery, Nagoya, Japan, as part of the Aichi Triennale, 2013.

  • Neue Museen

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2011) Neue Museen. 16mm film, colour, sound, 11 mins. 2011. Film still, detail. [Art/Design Item]

  • Things to Come

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2011) Things to Come. 16mm film, black and white, silent, 5 mins. 2011. Film still, detail. [Art/Design Item]

  • The form, function and future of the artists' studio

    Ellard, Graham and Harvey, Jonathan and Echarte, Arantxa, Double Agents, Acme Studios (2010) The form, function and future of the artists' studio.

  • Machine on Black Ground

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2009) Machine on Black Ground. 16mm film, colour, sound, 15 mins. 2009. Film still, detail. [Art/Design Item]

  • Proposal, for an unmade film (set in the future)

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2007) Proposal, for an unmade film (set in the future). 16mm film, colour, sound, 21 mins. 2007. Installation view; NIMK, Amsterdam. 2009. [Art/Design Item]

  • Motion Path

    Ellard, Graham and Johnstone, Stephen (2006) Motion Path. 12 channel video installation. 2006. Installation view; De la Warr Pavilion, Bexhill, UK. 2006. [Art/Design Item]