Paul Bush's Films

‘What is so extraordinary about this body of work is the passionate clarity of the ideas that fuel it and the formal precision of the narrative and cinematographic structures which allow the viewer in.’ Leslie Dick

Paul Bush’s films challenge the boundaries that separate fiction, documentary and animation. His background in Fine Art is an influence on all his work and this is reflected in its inclusion in art collections and exhibitions as well as cinema distribution and television broadcast. During the 1980’s he wrote and directed several short and medium length films that were critically acclaimed but it was not until the 1990’s that his films became widely distributed and he was able to concentrate all his attention on film-making. During the 90’s his films were commissioned by all the major broadcasters, won numerous awards and were shown in cinemas, exhibitions and television all round the world. During this period he usually used single frame techniques often involving live action elements. In 1999 he was polled in second place in Creation’s list of top directors of animation. In 1996 he set up his company Ancient Mariner Productions to produce his own films and he also directs commercials and his clients have included Panasonic and Philips. In 2003 he was awarded a Nesta fellowship to develop feature films. His first feature Babeldom was completed in 2012. Due to the uncertainty of funding in the UK since 2000 he has increasingly relied on international co-productions to finance his work.

Bush (1956-2023) studied Fine Art at Central School and Goldsmiths College, London. He taught himself how to make films while a member of the London Film-makers Co-op and Chapter Film Workshop in Cardiff. From 1981 to 1993 he taught film-making, establishing a film workshop in South London and supervising a wide variety of courses and the production of numerous student films. between 1995 and 2001 he taught on the visual arts course at Goldsmiths. He has lectured, run workshops and tutored at numerous art and film courses around the world including the Media Academy of Cologne, National Film Board of Canada, The Netherlands Institute of Animation Films, La Poudrière in France, TAW in Denmark, St Lukas in Brussels, KASK in Ghent, Anadolou University in Turkey, EIC-TV in Cuba, and the Royal College of Arts, Duncan of Jordanstone and the National Film and Television School in Britain. From 2015-17 he was visiting lecturer at Harvard.


‘Paul Bush is part scavenger, part inventor. Nothing is out of bounds and everything is worth trying. This is what makes Bush’s work so welcoming; you never know what you are in for but you know it will be smart, funny, provocative and unique.’ Chris Robinson

‘Let nobody forget the sheer pleasure of watching this work, for its technical achievement, for its verve and ambition,its pace and constant surprise, for its beauty.’ Gareth Evans

‘Bush has demonstrated a fascination with artistic techniques of the past, particularly those that have endowed us with works whose great and enduring beauty tend to eclipse the extraordinary degree of devoted labour involved in creating them.’ Chris Darke

‘The secret preoccupation of these films, finally, is beauty. It may be the case that the film-maker, in focusing so relentlessly on issues of time, narrative, history, the intersection of the graphic and the cinematic, and the question of clarity of presentation, doesn’t himself see it but the viewer does. As if beauty were a necessary by-product of these investigations, beyond the intention of the artist, yet an inevitable result of his rigorous control and passionate pursuit of meaning.’ Leslie Dick