Gareth Polmeer is an artist, writer and lecturer.

He studied at the Royal College of Art (RCA) and Central Saint Martins and has exhibited works nationally and internationally. He holds a doctorate from the RCA and has published on film/video and digital aesthetics, presenting papers at conferences and symposia. Working variously with electronic media, music and moving image his work over the last decade has focussed upon abstraction, colour and form in videographics.

He has worked at various U.K. universities for 9 years across Fine Art, Moving Image and Design subjects (both theory and practice) and is currently a lecturer at the RCA (Critical and Historical Studies, since 2011) and at Camberwell College of Arts (Visual Theory, since 2009).

Selected recent video screenings include ‘Building Structures’ at the Victoria and Albert Museum (UK), ‘Four Modes of Anti-Image’ at the State Hermitage Museum (Russia), and ‘Durational Video’ at Northwest Film Forum (USA).


BA(Hons), MA, PhD(RCA), PGCert(HE), FHEA

Current Employment

Royal College of Art, UK
Visiting Lecturer in Critical and Historical Studies.
Dissertation supervisor for postgraduate programmes in Visual Communication, Animation and Information Experience Design.

Camberwell College of Arts, UK
Associate Lecturer in Visual Theory.
Dissertation supervisor for undergraduate and postgraduate Illustration programmes, and postgraduate Fine Art Digital.

Previous Employment

Middlesex University, UK
Sessional Lecturer in Multimedia

University for the Creative Arts, UK
Lecturer/Senior Lecturer in Film and Video

Canterbury Christ Church University, UK
Sessional Lecturer in Digital Arts

James Cook University, Australia
Guest Lecturer in Arts and Media

London College of Communication, UK
Guest Lecturer in Film and Television

Publications and Conference Papers

Movement within Movement. In: Progressive Scan. London, Evelyn Yard. 2015.

Film Unframed.
In: Austrian Studies. Vol. 23. MHRA. 2015. ISSN: 13507532

Processes and Variations in Digital Landscapes.
Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA) Conference Proceedings, BCS, London. 2015. ISBN 978-1-78017-316-0

Motion to Becoming: Nature and the Image in Time. PhD thesis. Royal College of Art.

Sequences and Intervals. In: Leonardo Journal. Vol. 48, No. 2. 2015. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press. ISSN 0024-094X

Transient Landscape. In: Millennium Film Journal. Issue 61. New York: Millennium Film Workshop. 2015. ISSN 1064-5586

The Cinematic Map. In: Materiality of Time. London: UAL/LCC. 2015. ISBN 978-1-906908-34-8

Trees in Autumn. In: Rees, A.L., Hamlyn, Nicky. and Payne, Simon. (eds.) The Films of Kurt Kren: Structure and Experiment in Austrian Avant-garde film. Bristol: Intellect. 2015.

Tree Again. In: Rees, Hamlyn and Payne (eds.)

Asylum. In: Rees, Hamlyn and Payne (eds.)

The Cinematic Map. In: Troubled Waters. London: Camberwell Press. 2013. ISBN: 978-1-908971-14-2.

States of Flux. In: MIRAJ, Moving Image Review and Art Journal, Volume 1, Issue 2. 2012. Bristol: Intellect. ISSN: 20456298.

About Now MMX (excerpt). In: One More Time, Catalogue, London: London Met University. 2011.

About Now MMX (excerpt). In: Media City Film Festival, Catalogue, Windsor, Canada. 2011.

The Cinematic Map: William Raban's About Now MMX. In: Tengen Magazine, Issue 3. London: UCL. 2011.

Conference Papers

Processes and Variations in Digital Landscapes. Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA), BCS, London. 2015.

Screen Time, Screen Space - Cinema and/as Gallery Art (co-convened session). Association of Art Historians conference. Royal College of Art, London. 2014.

Fragment/Continuum - Disunity in Cinematic Time. Unity/Disunity Conference. University College London. 2013.

Experimental Film and the Architectonics of Light. Association of Art Historians conference. University of Reading. 2013.

Re-temporalising Time: Motion and Intervals in Experimental Film. Fast/Slow: Intensifications of Cinematic Speed. Anglia Ruskin University. 2013.

States of Flux - Visual Communication Research Symposium, Royal College of Art. 2013.

Adorno, Nature and Film - Marx and the Movies conference. University of Central Lancashire. 2012. 


Recent Screenings and Exhibitions

2016. Contact: A Festival of Experimental Film and Video. Apiary Studios, London.

October 2015. Edges and Intervals. Painting, Film and Video. Apiary Studios, London.

September 2015. 'Water-worlds: art practices and wet ecologies', Geographies of the Anthropocene, RGS-IBG Conference, University of Exeter.

July 2015, Building Structures, Victoria and Albert Museum, London.

June 2015, SHOW RCA, Royal College of Art, London.

June 2015, Seascapes. Royal College of Art, London.

February 2015, Four Modes of Anti-Image: Recent Experimental Film and Video from the UK - The State Hermitage Museum, St. Petersburg, Russia.

September 2014, Screenscapes - Landscape film and video, Nicosia, Cyprus.

July 2014, Durational Video - Northwest Film Forum, Seattle, USA.

May 2014, XVIIX online gallery for one-month film and video exhibitions.

March 2014, Screenscapes - Landscape film and video, Apiary Studios, London.

Commentaries on Works

Chris Welsby. Artist/filmmaker

‘[Sea (2011) is]…a way to mess with the digital image so that it is no longer separate from, and therefore looking in upon the landscape from outside…a sort of hybrid…where neither element can be separated…where representation and represented meet...Where does the working of the perceptual eye/brain mechanism stop and the photo-electric signal on the monitor start.'

Nicky Hamlyn. Gareth Polmeer: New Work at Screenscapes (online review, 2014)

[Field/Variation (2014)] ‘…on a spatial/compositional level, the work is a kind of collage, in which an image is cut into very thin horizontal layers, which are reassembled into a different order. This same process also takes place in the temporal dimension, so that the lines from different moments in time are also displaced and repositioned. Spatial inversion and temporal reversal further remove the constituent lines from their original place and function, to create a mirror-formed loop, a mirror within a mirror… the work isolates and foregrounds the presentational form of the video image as compounded from lines. In cathode ray TVs, the image is scanned onto the screen in a series of left to right, top to bottom lines. In other words it is inherently linear. In modern flat screens and projectors, the pixels are always ‘on’, and their brightness is controlled by the rapid variation in the voltages applied to them, in order to change the composition of the image over time, i.e. to generate an apparently moving image…Polmeer’s piece turns more on the incipient abstractness of all images, but crucially extending this into an effect of temporal manipulation proper to time based images.’


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Selected Video Works


Double Field (2015)

Comprised of two versions of the same image sequence, Double Field interlaces two versions (one time reversed) into one another (back and forth). At one frame at the midpoint of the transition (1/25th of a second) in the work the two sequences are in equilibrium, before again shifting. The colour field flicker and pattern between the works generates allusions to landscape imagery in abstract plays of light and darkness. The multiplication of the ‘same’ recording into a grid (with the footage animated in a downward – top left to bottom right – drift) create a shifting optic that goes both with and against the linear flow of the image signal. The work is doubled on several levels: the fields of the video codec; the layers of recordings developing through one another; the loop and repetition of elements; the ‘real’ and ‘virtual’ interrelations of recording and digitally generated colour; and the bisected image moving in two directions.


Images of sky and sea on the horizon form linear bands of colour through the spatial and temporal composition of scan lines. The video is composed of multiple instances of a singular hand-held recording from a hilltop facing out to sea. This has been layered and masked in different configurations with areas one pixel in height, each offset by varying iterations of 1/25th of a second from the next. These layers are duplicated, inversed and reversed for a looping projection such that the images develop through one another like a palindrome, with the textures a series of colour fields; a semblance of nature out of the contradictions and compressions of the videographic image structure.


Field is comprised of a two-minute, three thousand frame sequence of still images, recorded as part of a circular walk around the peripheries of an urban parkland, fields and marshes. The juxtaposition of individually recorded images – each with different framings and exposure of the environment - create a rapid flicker in the original sequence. Offset into spatially and temporally reordered lines, the images are displaced and flicker through one another, creating a visible interplay between the ‘upper’ and ‘lower’ fields of the interlaced video image.


In Sea, the image is reconstituted such that movements appear at times to be continuous, in that waves move over or between spatially and temporally distinct parts of the picture. Progressions of wave movements from the top (background) of the image space move towards the bottom (foreground) as oscillations of tidal flows shift and rebound from horizon to shoreline. By eliminating elements of perspective the abstraction constructs apparent depths from colour gradients. Movements of light and colour frame a sensuous unfolding of landscape through the fragmentary properties of the image technology. Superimposed monochrome blocks of colour ‘eye-dropped’ from the footage move downwards over the top of the waves. The illusion of motion in the video is the perception of changes between spatially frozen parts. The paradox of all ‘moving images’ is brought to light.