Out of my box: 27 videos from lockdown

TT Journal, ISSUE 6, September 2023

By Matt Hulse

During Lockdowns I found myself in a toxic flatshare in London. I was pretty much confined to a single box room. To cope with and process this I drew upon the words of Glasgow Short Film Festival who stated:

“Matt Hulse creates out of whatever is to hand – he transforms the everyday and banal into something striking, witty and beautiful.”

Right then, I thought, here am I in an incredibly banal situation, what can we do here?

Improvising with resources that were immediately to hand in the room, and mindful of the concept of ‘armchair travel’, I set about shooting a series of short journeys of escape that I then posted to Instagram.

I travelled to the moon, to Paris and to Ukraine (well before Russia’s invasion). Psychogeographical perigrinations also took me to imaginary spaces such as Warhol’s Factory, a psychiatrist’s surgery, a gay disco (this included a version of In Deep’s ‘Last Night A DJ Saved My Life’ translated into German) and Marienbad.

I also created a commercial for an imaginary gentleman’s aftershave called ‘Eau de Carlisle’.

I created something like 90 short films, 27 of which have been selected for OUT OF MY BOX. These include films that were shot in between the Lockdowns, during brief periods of actual escape.

Watch Matt’s film here:

OUT OF MY BOX: 27 VIDEOS FROM LOCKDOWN is a curated review of short works by artist filmmaker Matt Hulse created during Lockdowns.

Full of playful invention, mischief, poetry, humour and beauty, the work represents a portfolio of diverse, creative and resilient responses to a period of adversity and uncertainty. Shot, Edited, Performed and Narrated by Matt Hulse.

Additional narration Julia Zinnbauer and Werner Herzog.
Quotations from Margaret Tait’s PERSONAE (LUX, 2020) and Talking Heads’ CROSSEYED AND PAINLESS (Sire, 1980).
Archive Footage courtesy of Prelinger Archives.
Distributed by LUX (London)

You can also read here Matt’s Ten Haiku on Filmmaking

Matt Hulse is an artist, filmmaker, photographer, performer and writer. His films have screened at dozens of festivals and galleries in 25+ countries internationally. He has been nominated thrice each for The Jarman Award and The Margaret Tait Awards. In 2019 he was one of ten artists commissioned to make a short film for Margaret Tait 100, celebrating the centenary of Orcadian filmmaker. In 2017 he was the overall winner of Germany’s prestigious Felix Schoeller Photo Award. His work features in Time Out’s 1000 Films to Change Your Life (Simon Cropper 2006) and A History of Experimental Film & Video (A.L.Rees 1999) and is kept at the National Media Museum (UK), National Library of Scotland, Gallaudet University (Washington DC), The Wallace Library (Rochester, NY) and Fales Library (New York University). https://anormalboy.wordpress.com/