Isabel Rocamora is a British-Spanish artist filmmaker, scholar and educator working at the intersections of contemporary art, cinema and philosophy.
Awarded in London, Los Angeles, Barcelona, Naples, the Hague and Hong Kong, she is known for ethically-committed, affective, aesthetically compelling sound images. She is the writer, director, choreographer and principal producer of works such as Residual, Horizon of Exile, Promise of Fallen Time, Body of War, and most recently Faith. Her single and multi-channel films have been screened at festivals (over 100), commissioned for broadcast (Channel 4 UK; TV3 Catalonia) and been widely exhibited – alongside recent solo shows for the Koffler Gallery Toronto, Summerhall Galleries Edinburgh and Shaw Gallery Utah – at, notably: CCC Palazzo Strozzi, Florence; Pushkin Museum of Fine Art, Moscow; Bologna Museum of Modern Art; MUNTREF Museum, Buenos Aires; Museu Història de Catalunya; Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Israel; Austrian Cultural Forum NYC. Her works are represented by Galeria SENDA, are held in several international collections (including Art Bärtschi Switzerland and the National Museum of Photography Copenhagen), and have been reviewed in major art publications such as Artforum, Eikon, Afterimage and national newspapers including The Times, The Guardian, La Vanguardia. An essay on the philosophies, aesthetics and performance principles that ground the preoccupations of her filmmaking will be published early 2021 in Cinematic Intermediality: Theory and Practice (eds. M. Schmid and K. Knowles, Edinburgh University Press).
The gestural register that characterises many of Isabel’s screen works draws on her background in performance. Between 1994 and 2004 she established, under Momentary Fusion Aerial-Dance-Theatre (co-founded with Sophy Griffiths) and as digital artist, an international profile as director/ choreographer/ producer and performer. Recipient of an English National Opera Award for Innovation, among other accolades, her intermedial practice was commissioned by institutions such as the ICA, The London Victoria & Albert Museum, Future Physical and Grec Festival Barcelona. Ranging small to middle and large-scale, she directed/ choreographed/ produced nineteen theatre/ site-specific productions and nine body-technology works. These creations toured extensively: nationally (e.g. Lilian Baylis Sadlers Wells, Canterbury Marlowe, Wakefield Theatre Royal) and via the British Council in Central and Eastern Europe, Asia, South Africa, South and North America. She learned the ropes of the London film industry by working as actress and choreographer on feature films, music videos and commercials with directors Jonathan Glazer, Charles Sturridge, Tessa Sheridan (Academy Films, Paramount, Channel 4) and Oscar-winning visual effects director Tim Webber (Gravity). She has acted as a jury member on the TV3 Dance on Camera Commissions and as President of the Jury for Vidéoformes Prix de la Création Vidéo.
Isabel holds a PhD in film-philosophy from the University of Edinburgh and a BA in Film & Performance from the University of Bristol. She trained in celluloid and digital cinematography at Maine Media Workshops U.S. and in performance at Jacques Lecoq International School in Paris. She has taught film and video practices, theories and histories spanning artist moving image, non- and narrative filmmaking and interdisciplinary creation at the Universities of Edinburgh, Edinburgh Napier and Bristol, the Barcelona International Film School and by invitation at Brown and Frankfurt Universities as well as Rhode Island School of Design, Israel Center for Digital Art and Stills Gallery Edinburgh. Through her ongoing educational program, Isabel has delivered talks, workshops and masterclasses in artist film, lens-based choreography and media performance across Europe, the Middle East, North and South Africa, South East Asia and North America. She is passionate about guiding and inspiring students to develop a personal voice matched by analytical and technical competence, thoughtful production and a clear communication style.
Isabel lives and works between Edinburgh and Barcelona.
Portrait image by Mari Luz Vidal.