Professor of Experimental Film

  • Academic
  • Research
Professor Nicky Hamlyn

Professor Nicky Hamlyn is a filmmaker and writer on artists’ film and video. He works with 16mm film and digital video in a variety of formats, including single and multi-screen, performance, and installation. Nicky delivers lectures, tutorials, seminars, and direct animation film workshops to first year students in Canterbury, and supervises PhD students.

Professor Nicky Hamlyn


Nicky studied Fine Art at the University of Reading. From 1979-1981 he was workshop organizer at the London Filmmaker's Cooperative, where he co-founded the journal Undercut. From 1983-88 Nicky worked at the BBC and in a freelance capacity as an assistant film editor.

His work has been exhibited at venues and festivals worldwide, including London, Edinburgh, Toronto, Melbourne and several editions of Media City Festival in Windsor, Ontario. Nicky has had solo screenings and retrospectives at the San Francisco Cinematheque, Pacific Film Archives (Berkeley), the Ann Arbor Film Festival, EXIS, Seoul, Cine Infinito, Santander, S8 Periférico, A Coruña, Spain, and others.

Nicky’s book Film Art Phenomena (2003) is published by the BFI. He has also published widely on aspects of artists' / experimental film and video, most recently on the frame and its dissolution in The Palgrave Handbook of Experimental Cinema edited by Kim Knowles and Jonathan Walley, (Palgrave Macmillan, 2024). With A L Rees and Simon Payne, he co-edited, and contributed three chapters to a monograph on the Austrian filmmaker Kurt Kren: Kurt Kren, Structural Films (Intellect books, 2016) and co-edited, with Vicky Smith, Experimental and Expanded Animation: New Directions (Palgrave Macmillan, 2018), which won the McLaren-Lambart award for best academic book on animation in 2019.

Research statement

Nicky is interested in medium specificity in film and video, the materiality of the image, the dissolution of the film frame, and systems and the role of AI in artmaking. His current practice projects involve filming birds (pigeons and Swifts) over very long periods of time using time-lapse sequences.

Research supervision

Nicky has supervised 14 PhDs to completion and currently has four students at UCA. He is interested in projects around experimental and artists’ film and video, sound and experimental music.

  • Fellow of the Higher Education Academy since 2000.


  • 2009: Tim Garrett: Puppetry and Visual Theatre, PhD by practice, UCA.
  • 2010:  Steven McIntyre: University of Melbourne: Theoretical Avant-Garde and Avant-Garde Theories, PhD by thesis.
  • 2012: Sarah Bowen: Landscape Film, PhD by practice, UCA, Farnham.
  • 2013: Richard Couzins: Material Voice in Fine Art Practice, PhD by practice, UCA, Farnham.
  • 2015: Sarah Bowen: Walking Albion, PhD by Practice, UCA, Farnham. Kayla Parker: Every Frame Counts: Creative Practice and Gender in Direct Animation, PhD by practice, University of Plymouth.
  • 2016: Philip Sanderson: Towards an Asynchronous Cinema, PhD by publication (practice), University of Westminster.
  • 2017: Julie Marsh: Site-Integrity in film and video installation, PhD by practice, London College of Communication, UAL.
  • 2018. Julian Konczak: Transmedia Storytelling and Transcendental Experience: Using Media Archaeology in Creative Practice to Explore Narrative and Space within the Virtual Screen. PhD by publication (practice), Nottingham Trent.
  • 2020. Matt Johnson: Photo Book Club: Connections Made and Missed. PhD by thesis, UCA.