Ben Rivers (b. 1972) lives and works in London. Rivers' practice as a filmmaker treads a line between documentary and fiction. Often following and filming people who have in some way separated themselves from 'the modern world' the raw film footage provides Rivers with a starting point for creating oblique narratives imagining alternative existences in marginal worlds. Rivers uses near-antique cameras and hand develops the 16mm film, which shows all the evidence of the elements it has been exposed to - the materiality of this medium forming part of the narrative. More recently the film works have developed to incorporate installation. Rivers gained a BA in Fine Art from Falmouth School of Art and Design in 1993. In 2009 he had a solo exhibition at The A Foundation, Liverpool and his films have been screened worldwide. He is working on a commission for Picture This in collaboration with Matt's Gallery and Animate for November/December 2010.
Ben Rivers | Receiving the Paul Hamlyn Award is one of the loveliest things to happen to me as an artist. It will allow me to concentrate fully on making work over the next three years without the usual financial quandaries. I will be able to set up a darkroom in a studio so I no longer have to smell the chemicals in my kitchen. This award has come like magic, without any hype, and is an endorsement which has at its core the simple idea of allowing an artist to continue working in their own odd ways, you couldn't ask for more. Thank you very much.