Gareth Polmeer is an artist, writer and lecturer.


Gareth Polmeer studied at the Royal College of Art (RCA) and Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. He has exhibited works nationally and internationally, holds a doctorate from the RCA and has published on moving image, digital aesthetics and philosophy, presenting papers at conferences and symposia.

He has worked as a university lecturer for 11 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). Exhibitions in recent years include 'Contact: A Festival of New Experimental Film and Video' at Apiary Studios, and ‘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).

As a writer his interests encompass digital aesthetics, film, art history and the relation of 19th century and ancient philosophy to contemporary culture and aesthetics. Recent/forthcoming papers at the University of Oxford, University College London, Kings College London, and the British Computer Society.


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

Current Employment

Royal College of Art, UK
Visiting Lecturer in Critical and Historical Studies.
PhD supervisor in Critical and Historical Studies. MA 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.

Other Activities

Electronic Visualisation and the Arts Conference (EVA), Member of the Organising Committee and Submissions Reviewer

Leonardo Peer Review Panel, Manuscript Reviewer

Member of the Hegel Society of Great Britain

Previous Employment

Middlesex University, UK
Sessional Lecturer in Multimedia

University for the Creative Arts, UK
Sessional 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

Other Links


> LinkedIn

> Nightworks

> Leonardo

> Arteca

> RCA research

> RCA Repository

> EThOS online

> Waterworlds

> 'Contact' screenings


Books (in development)

The Movement of Appearance: Essays on the Present

A collection of essays on philosophy, politics and aesthetics. Each revolve around the question of time and eternity through G.W.F. Hegel's philosophy, as this connects to contemporary debates around art, spirit, beauty and modernity in the digital age. The book is a reconsideration of contemporary aesthetic theory, and a critique of postmodernism and its legacies.

Activity and Return

The book examines a number of cultural, economic and political debates in Hegel's philosophy, relating this to contemporary contexts, time and the notion of sublation.

Essays, Articles, Chapters etc.

Appearance of the Lasting: Art, Spirit and the Digital Age. (forthcoming, transcript of a lecture). 2017

Absolute Clearness, Absolute Darkness: Hegel's Speculative Thinking.
PROVA. No. 4. 2017. ISBN: 978-1-910642-03-0 (forthcoming)

Sublating Time: Hegel’s Speculative Philosophy and Digital Aesthetics.
Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA) Conference Proceedings, BCS, London. 2016. ISBN: 978-1-78017-344-3 

Trees in Autumn. In: Hamlyn, Nicky. Payne, Simon., and Rees, A.L. (eds.) Kurt Kren: Structural Films. Bristol: Intellect. 2016. ISBN: 978-1-78320-551-6

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

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

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

Movement within Movement. In: VIDEO. London, Evelyn Yard. 2015. 

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. 2015.

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

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.


Papers and Lectures

Intuition, Images and Appearance in the Logic. 'Hegel's Science of Logic and the Logic of his Philosophy'. Third Oxford Hegel Reading Group Workshop. St. John's College, University of Oxford, 2017.

Digital Senses and Aesthetic Autonomy. 'Coded Communication: Digital Senses and Aesthetics, Merging Art and Life'. Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA) Pre-Conference Symposium, British Computer Society, London. 2017.

Appearance of the Lasting: Art, Spirit and the Digital Age. University Church, University of Oxford, 2017

Movements of Appearance: Digital Aesthetics and the Essence of the Image. Royal College of Art, London, 2016.

Knowledge and Relativism: A Critique of Postmodernism and an Argument for Systematic Philosophy. 'The Journal' session. Humanities Research Forum, Royal College of Art, London, 2016.

Appearance, Illusion and Time. Part of the panel 'Modern Time'. 'Living Pasts, Moving Present', German Screen Studies Network Symposium. King's College London. 2016

Sublating Time: Hegel’s Speculative Philosophy and Digital Aesthetics. Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA), British Computer Society, London. 2016.

Duration and Timelessness: Hegel, Aesthetics and the (Slow) Image in Time. Slow Cinema Symposium. Institute of Archaeology, University College London, 2016.

Impermanence and the Image of Trees: Hegel, Dialectic and the Experience of Nature.
German Research Seminar, King's College London. 2016.

‘Immanent Movement’: Hegel’s ‘speculative thinking’ and questions of meaning in German Philosophy. Humanities Research Forum, Royal College of Art, London. 2015

Processes and Variations in Digital Landscapes. Electronic Visualisation and the Arts (EVA), British Computer Society, 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.


Selected Recent Video Work and Reviews




* Recent exhibitions (2014-17) listed below, with recent reviews and commentaries.

March 2017. Holding Space. The Brick Cube, London.

March 2017. Signal Noise. Close-Up Film Centre, London.

February 2017. To Flowers. Andor Gallery, London.

October 2016. Double/Distance (solo show). The Advisory, London.

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

January 2016. Moving Still. Rough Print Gallery, London.

December 2015. VIIDEO, experimental video. Evelyn Yard Gallery, London.

October 2015. VIDEO, experimental video. Evelyn Yard Gallery, London.

October 2015. Edges and Intervals. Painting, Film and Video (co-programmed). 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 of artists' film/video.

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

Reviews and Commentaries on Works

Simon Payne. Negative Light: Contemporary British Experimental Film and Video. In: Senses of Cinema, Issue 78 (2016) ISSN 1443-4059.

'...Gareth Polmeer’s Sea (2011) and Field Variation (2014), where the image in each case is comprised of numerous woven bands of video’s scan lines, derived from separate video recordings of a seascape or landscape... motion is a product of the systematic processes of the work, not a matter of the ordinary given mode of representation.'

A.L. Rees. Routes to Physical Optics. In: Sequence: New Artists Film and Video, No. 4. London, (2016) ISSN 2048-2167

'…physical optics is explicitly rooted in frame-based and structural film…it overwhelmingly asserts the non-persistence of vision, or the ineluctable flow and ungraspable substance of the screened image. Like all critical cinema, it carries the negative in its definition… Gareth Polmeer’s Sea (2011), which he describes as based on ‘progressions’, shifting vertical digital lines of seascape horizons in iterations of 1/25 of a second “to recompose the image” as waves seem to roll over or between different parts of the picture. Here, “continuous motion is induced from a series of stills” in which “the image refreshes sequentially”. Paradoxes of motion and space are induced through the image in process...'

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.’

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.'