Sometimes the contents of a studio provide the artist with a subject; equally, its space can become the artwork.

Films showing in this section: 

10:30 - William Turnbull 83B 1951
10:41 - Derek Jarman Studio Bankside 1970
10:48 - Annabel Nicolson Shapes 1970
10:55 - Nicky Hamlyn Minutiae 1989
10:56 - Jake and Dinos Chapman Sacrificial Mutilation and Death in Modern Art 1999

William Turnbull 83B 1951

11 minutes. Collection: Artist (courtesy Tate)

This film shot in William Turnbull’s studio, records shadows cast by his sculptures, and sounds that might be heard there. The sounds are slowed down and permutated. ‘The film reiterates a major theme of Turnbull’s work, that the meaning of a shape or form (or gesture or sound) depends on the context in which it is encountered.’ Richard Morphet 1983. 


William Turnbull was born in Scotland in 1922. He worked as an illustrator before the Second World War. After serving in the RAF, he studied at the Slade School of Art then taught experimental design and Sculpture at the Central School of Art. He had a Tate retrospective in 1973. 83B was one of two films made by Turnbull in the early 1950s with Allan Forbes. 

Derek Jarman Studio Bankside 1970

6 minutes. Collection: James Mackay 

Studio Bankside was Derek Jarman’s first film. It is a diary recording daily activity in the studio where he lived and worked, and in the surrounding streets. He shot his Super8 films without prior plans, but gave weight to the resulting images by radically slowing them down, sometimes to three frames a second, and adding music. 


Derek Jarman was born in 1942. He studied at Kings College and The Slade School of Art, London. Jarman’s training in theatre design led to work on films including Ken Russell’s The Devils 1971, but he was introduced to Super8 filmmaking by his neighbour in Bankside studios, Andrew Logan. Prolific equally in 35mm and S8mm, Jarman was shortlisted for Turner Prize in 1986 ‘in recognition of the outstanding visual quality of his films’, in particular Sebastiane, Jubilee, The Tempest and Caravaggio. He died in 1994. 

Annabel Nicolson Shapes 1970

7 minutes. Collection: Lux 

Annabel Nicolson’s abstract vision of colours, shapes and rhythms derives from elements in her studio. She filmed images, then projected and re-filmed them from the screen, sometimes slowing them down and superimposing them. She welcomed ‘the incidental tactile qualities of film’, such as dust particles. The film is silent. 


Annabel Nicolson was born in 1946. She studied at Hornsey College of Art, Edinburgh School of Art and later St Martins School of Art. As cinema scheduler at London Filmmakers’ Co-op in the mid 1970s, she broadened its scope, bringing performance fully into the programme, and forging links with the London Musicians Collective. Her performances and films focus attention on small-scale and ephemeral events, and foregrounded the malleability and also fragility of the film medium. 

Nicky Hamlyn Minutiae 1989

1 minute. Collection: Lux 

Nicky Hamlyn’s portrait of BBC2’s The Late Show studio was shot in one continuous sequence, and with no subsequent editing. Within the limit of a one-minute duration, the film reverses the usual visual priorities, and explores the space surrounding the absent interviewer’s chair. 


Nicky Hamlyn was born in 1954. He studied at the University of Reading, and was London Filmmakers’ Co-op workshop organiser in the late 1970s. A lecturer at Kent Institute of Art and Design at Maidstone, Hamyln is active both as a filmmaker and writer on film and other arts. 

Jake and Dinos Chapman Sacrificial Mutilation and Death in Modern Art 1999

5 minutes. Collection: White Cube 

Unlike many of their sculptures, the rare excursions into film by Jake and Dinos Chapman are openly tongue-in-cheek. Their studio provides the backdrop to scenes from imagined B-movie versions of the lives (and deaths) of artists. 


Dinos Chapman was born in 1962, and studied at Ravensbourne College of Art. Jake was born in 1966 and studied at North East London Polytechnic. Both subsequently studied at the Royal College of Art, London. They worked as assistants to Gilbert & George and have exhibited together since 1992.