John Woodman is a film/video artist working with Landscape film/video and photography and studied at St.Martin’s School of Art and the Slade School of Art. He worked as a Senior Lecturer in Visual Communication Studies at West Midlands College from 1980-87, Principal Lecturer and Chair of Design at Exeter School of Art and Design/University of Plymouth from 1988-96 and Head of the School of Communication and Media at Cumbria Institute of the Arts from 1996-2006. Woodman established the Centre for Landscape and Environmental Arts Research (CLEAR) and was Director of the centre from 2004-08. He is currently an Honorary Research Fellow of the University of Cumbria.
His film and video work has been shown in a variety of venues and film festivals including The London Filmmakers Co-operative the National Film Theatre, The Royal Academy of Arts 2011, the 28th Kasselar International Dokumentarfilm 2011, Stuttgarter Filmwinter, International Festival of Expanded Media 2012, Cambridge Film Festival 2012, the LUCCA International Film and Video Festival, Italy 2013 and in the ‘Environmental Agency: A Landscape Films Programme’ at the BFI NFT, 2013. An installation of video work was exhibited at the Frankfurter Kunstverein in March 2013 and Ruskin’s Ponds at the Alchemy Film and Moving Image Festival in 2015. During 2016 film screenings have included; Lisbon International Film Festival; Swedish International Film Festival; International Underground Film Festival, Mongolia; AVIFF Cannes; Venice Film Week; Jihlava, International Documentary Film Festival, CZ,(experimental documentary); Verona International Film Festival; Los Angeles Underground Film Forum and Hong Kong Arthouse Film Festival.
Previous film installations have been shown in numerous galleries as part of the Arts Councils Film-Makers on Tour Scheme. Woodman was one of the founding members of the Undercut Magazine Collective and a co-editor and designer from 1981-86. He has worked in collaboration with Jean Matthee and with Roger Polley on photographic projects, commissions and film installations, which have been shown in many national and international galleries and also featured on Channel 4. Books and DVD’s published on the work include the Structure of Chance, 1985, Spirit of Nature, 1994, In Search of the Sacred, 2002, Sequences, 2007, Ruskin’s Pond, 2010, Of Truth of Water- John Ruskin, 2010 (as editor). DVD’S: Landscape Films-John Woodman 1977-1982, published by LUX, UK, 2013 and Film Installations1979-1985, Roger Polley and John Woodman.
His recent work since 2009 revives some of the concerns of his earlier films started in 1977. Continuing with an investigation, through the observation of landscape and natural phenomena, of issues concerning representation, duration and perception. Using a fixed frame and hand held camera the work explores concerns of time-space and light, focusing on visual transformation, change and transience. Working in ‘Real Time‘, particular emphasis is given to the way in which, through time, changes in light, weather and season affect our perception of space and place in film. Consideration of reflexivity and the spectator’s phenomenological experience of viewing and the contemplation of video and film of long continuous duration is an important aspect of his work. This includes both the observation of what occurs ‘on screen’ and self observation.