British Art in Motion Film Competition (Paul Mellon Centre) now open to applications (deadline 1st May 2024)

Have you thought about the potential of the moving image to research and explore art? Do you want to learn more about filmmaking? Perhaps you have something to say about a piece of sculpture or painting, and an essay won’t do the job? Or perhaps a point you wish to make about a textile artist or maker needs something more dynamic than an illustration? Maybe you would like to explore an archive, event or creative provocation? If yes, you could enter the British Art in Motion Film Competition.

Entering its third year, the British Art in Motion film competition is for undergraduate students who want to experiment with filmmaking as a research practice. The competition aims to give students the chance to explore the possibilities of filmmaking, and to experiment with how film can be used to offer new, engaging, creative and thought-provoking ways of interpreting works of British art and architecture from all periods.

The deadline for entries is Wednesday 1st May 2024 at 5pm.

Round One

For the first round, you will be asked to submit a proposal for a film that:

o Focuses on a single work of British art or architecture, from any period.
o Is between five and seven minutes in length.
o Offers your perspectives and arguments, and demonstrates evidence of extended thinking and research, and
o Showcases your vision for a work of art in moving image media.

The proposal should include:

o A five-hundred-word film treatment, in which you should offer a description of the film’s content, structure and approaches.
o A mood board, which is designed to give a sense of the film’s visual character. This might include images, pantones, textures, sketches or any other visual material that informs your approach to an artwork and cinematography. 
o A bibliography of no more than one page of A4 (double-spaced), listing the main sources you have or will consult in your research for this film, and
o A completed application form.

All applicants must be available to travel and stay in London during the week Monday 3rd – Friday 7th June 2024 to attend specialist filmmaking training at the Paul Mellon Centre (PMC).

For 8 successful entrants, British Art in Motion will:

o Provide a fully funded trip to London this summer for a specialist programme designed to equip them with all the skills they need to make a short film.
o Give a production fund of £500 to make their film over the summer months.
o Provide guidance and mentorship from experts.
o Give the opportunity to see their film screened at a central London cinema, and invite their family and friends to that special evening.
o Offer a cash prize of £1,000 for the winning film, and prizes for the runners-up, and
o Enable them to see their film published on the Paul Mellon Centre’s website.

Eligibility Criteria

o British Art in Motion is open to undergraduate students who are currently enrolled at a university in the United Kingdom, the Isle of Man or the Channel Islands and are aged 18 years or older as of 1st April 2024.
o A formal education in art history is not essential. They are interested in hearing ideas from students from a range of backgrounds and perspectives, studying any subject, at any UK-based university, in any year of their course. However, the competition is aimed at undergraduate students who engage closely and critically with visual art. They welcome applications from students in all disciplines where there is such an engagement with visual culture, including but not limited to art history, architecture, film, fashion, ceramics, animation, philosophy, museology, critical and cultural studies, anthropology and sociology.
o The subject of the film may be drawn from a field of British art and architectural history broadly understood, from the medieval period to the present day and across the spectrum of relevant geographical and cultural contexts. If you are uncertain whether your chosen topic would be eligible, please do get in contact with the team at the Paul Mellon Centre (PMC). As an institution, they pledge themselves to ensuring that the histories of British art are enriched and made more relevant to a broader range of people in the future. The inclusion of voices, narratives and experiences that have been marginalised or excluded in the past will have a transformational impact on the future of British art studies. Accordingly, they particularly welcome applications from those who are under-represented within the academic field of the humanities in the UK.
o While they recognise that filmmaking is often a collaborative process, submissions will be only be accepted from individual applicants.

For further information, please visit the Paul Mellon Centre website.