Max Colson

What’s your background?

I originally studied English Literature; I worked in advertising for five years; I did an MA in Documentary Photography; I had a funded year as an artist in residence at the Bartlett School of Architecture; I’ve worked as a freelance documentary photographer since 2013 alongside all of this. I also now teach on the MA Graphic Communication Design at Central Saint Martins in London. The latter is all about helping students use process-led design research to make work that explores the relationship between form and the circulation of knowledge, as well as parameters of that subject.

All of these experiences come together to provide a particular interdisciplinary context to my current film-making.


What are your artistic influences?

These provide some of the frame of reference to my work: Hito Steyerl, Taryn Simon, Breugel (both of them), Sophie Calle, Nick Briz, Walid Raad, Lawrence Lek, Patrick Keiller.

How do you start a new work?

I will usually start with lots of desk research around a theme or question. I’ll then spend ages trying to find the right ‘documentary’ story, which will then lead to gathering vast amounts of visual and textual source material. At the same time, I’m usually visually experimenting with motion graphics and trying to form a script. This experimentation will also inform my research in quite a major way. Whenever it happens, the visual making acts as the filter and synthesis for the source material.

What are you working on right now?

I’m working on a project looking at exploring how the UK is speculating on its future outside of the European Union. I’m very interested in using specialist video editing and animation techniques to filter through and respond to all the material that’s been produced over the last few years.

Another project I’m working on is exploring the effect of ‘Micro Homes’ (homes which are made below current minimum space standards) in the UK on their occupants.

I’m also very interested in progressing the experimental film work I’ve done to date using Lidar 3D scanning technology. You can see a previous example of this in my film London Knowledge maxcolson.com/portfolio/londonknowledge.

All of these projects will take a lot of time though so I’m applying for funding and looking for commissions. Please feel free to get in touch if you think there’s a suitable project.

Max Colson’s portfolio →