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Who we are


Sian Barber

Barber is a lecturer in Film Studies at Queen’s University, Belfast. She has published on British cinema and cinemagoing, and the work of the British Board of Film Censors. She is the author of Censoring the 1970s: The BBFC and the Decade that Taste Forgot (2011), The British Film Industry in the 1970s: Capital, Culture and Creativity (2013) and Using Film as a Source (2015). As well as continuing work on local film censorship she is working with RTE Archives to explore film debates on television through the earliest years of the broadcaster.

Stefano Baschiera

Lucy Baxter

Lucy Baxter is an experienced managing director in the creative sector and has worked as executive/series producer, producer/director and production manager on documentaries, shorts, features, news and dramas for  BBC, ITV, C4, Sky, C5, Al Jazeera and for cinema and digital release. Her book Running a Creative Company in the Digital Age was released in 2017 by Kamera Books. She has also produced branded content, digital education projects and industry events. Her work as producer has won BAFTA and RTS awards, been runner up for the Japan Prize and nominated for the Learning Onscreen awards. Lucy founded and ran Mandrake Films and has now founded a non-profit media campaigning organisation, Mental Abuse Matters. She has taught at various universities and film schools and currently teaches at UCA Farnham, NFTS and others. She is also on the Sheffield Docfest advisory board.

John D’Arcy

John D’Arcy lectures in Digital Media at Queen’s University Belfast.  His research focuses on storytelling and song-making in digital-media artefacts and live performances.  John has presented projects and events at festivals and conferences across Ireland including Belfast International Arts Festival, Happy Days International Samuel Beckett Festival and the Irish Sound Science and Technology Convocation.  In 2014, John worked with Kids’ Own Publishing Partnership on ‘The Lullaby Project’ capturing the process of their touring arts initiative for infants and creating in an interactive audiovisual app to document the between artists and participants.  In 2017, he led a course in project documentation for artists and educators with Arts in Education Ireland.  John’s ongoing podcast The Jewel Case features interviews with a range of artists in a variety of practices working in Northern Ireland.

Al Fisher

Aaron Guthrie

Aaron Guthrie is an emerging Creative Producer based in Belfast and London. He graduated from Film & Television Production BA at the University of Westminster. He founded a documentary screening project New Notions Cinema, funded by the British Film Institute’s Audience Network through Film Hub NI. He curates a programme of documentary film events and industry workshops. His current interests are in investigating ideas of impact and new audiences for documentary film.

Tori Holmes

Tori Holmes is Lecturer in Brazilian Studies at QUB. Her main research interests are in digital culture and the texts and practices of urban representation in Brazil, particularly relating to the favelas of Rio de Janeiro. She has worked on blogging by favela residents and is currently researching webdocumentaries relating to urban change in Rio de Janeiro. She has a particular interest in documentary circulation and impact, and how internet and social media content is being incorporated into documentary. She also teaches on contemporary Brazilian documentary and is currently involved in the supervision of two PhD theses relating to documentary in Brazil and in Lusophone Africa. In 2016, Tori received an AHRC cultural engagement fellowship via the Graduate School at Queen’s and as part of this she has been working in partnership with Second Chance Cinema [] to organise screenings of Brazilian documentaries in Belfast. The first such event, on Brazilian Protest Documentaries, took place in November 2016 and future editions are planned. 

Declan Keeney

Alex Koensler

Alexander Koensler directs the Peasant Activism Project (

Currently he is Research Fellow at the Institute for the Study of Conflict Transformation and Social Justice (ISCTSJ) at Queen’s University Belfast. He also coordinates with Elena Apostoli Cappello the network “Anthropology and Social Movements” of the European Association of Social Anthropologists (EASA).

Alexander’s works aims to unearth the role of experimental political activism that innovates and transcends often more institutionalized social movements. Combining recent developments in Ethnography with Social Movement Studies and Political Anthropology, he is interested in how to illuminate the potential of political “acts” in their ambiguous function of moments of rupture/reproduction, the social production of claims and the features of “grassroot” peace-activism in conflicts. Over the course of the past decade, he has carried out extensive ethnographic fieldwork related to transversal Arab-Jewish alliances in the Israeli-Palestinian conflict and related to the politics of recognition of Bedouin rights in the Israeli Negev desert. Currently he is coordinating the “Peasant Activism Project” related to activism for food sovereignty in Italy and based on visual and ethnographic methods.

His publications include Israeli-Palestinian Mobilizations: Shifting Paradigms. (2015) Farnham: Ashgate, and his films include La verità liquida. La storia dell’attivismo per la terra dei beduini in Israele (2008, 43 min.), Morlacchi Editori, Perugia [Liquid Truth. A Story of Activism for Bedouin Land-Rights in Israel].

Cahal McLaughlin

Cahal McLaughlin is Chair of Film Studies at QUB and Director of the Prisons Memory Archive (PMA). He has a background in community and broadcast film production and teaches and researches documentary practice and theory. His films include Armagh Stories: Voices from the Gaol (2015) on the female Troubles prison; We Never Give Up II (2012) on reparations in South Africa; and the most recent It Stays With You: Use of Force by UN Peacekeepers in Haiti (2017. He sits on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Media Practice and on the Board of the Belfast Film Festival. He has published the monograph, Recording Memories from Violence: a Filmmakers Journey (Intellect: 2010), and in journals such as Journal of Memory Studies.

Séan Murray

Seán Murray is a filmmaker and PhD candidate from Belfast. He’s also director of Respect Belfast Human Rights Film Festival. His main interests are in post-conflict / testimony focused documentaries addressing legacy issues pertaining to the recent conflict in the north of Ireland.

His creative practice has been looking at particular historical events in order to assist victims affected by exceptional traumatic experiences. The role of filmmaking in creating a space for families to take ownership of their own narratives has been central to his work, while promoting wider public acknowledgment of the experiences of bereavement, loss, and the lack of closure and justice, that has been suffered.

As director of the recent Respect Film Festival, he delivered a series of films, events and panel discussions exploring the wider cultural, human and socio-political implications of conflict and the countless ways these have been presented through film, both historically and in contemporary cinema.

Hugh Odling-Smee

Des O’Rawe

Dr Des O’Rawe lectures in Film Studies at Queen's University Belfast, where he is also a Fellow in the Senator George J. Mitchell Institute for Global Peace, Security and Justice. His research focuses chiefly on comparative and interdisciplinary approaches to the study of film, and his recent publications include: Regarding the Real: Cinema, Documentary, and the Visual Arts (Manchester UP, 2016) and Post-Conflict Performance, Film, and Visual Arts: Cities of Memory (with Mark Phelan; Palgrave, 2016). He has also published journals such asFilm QuarterlyStudies in Documentary FilmScreenQuarterly Review of Film and VideoKinemaLiterature/Film Quarterly, and Screening the Past. Several of his research projects have been externally funded by British Academy (PI); Wellcome Trust (PI); and AHRC (CI)), and in 2013-14 he was awarded a Leverhulme Research Fellowship.  

Richard O’Sullivan

Richard O’Sullivan is an experimental filmmaker. His videos respond to theoretical questions and have focussed on the portrayal of landscape; he has also produced personal documentaries. He studied at the University of Warwick and the University of California at Los Angeles (U.C.L.A. Film School).  O’Sullivan’s videos have been selected for, amongst others, the New York Video Festival, Lincoln Centre, Manhattan (2007); Dresden Film Festival (2008); Media Forum at the Moscow Film Festival (2008); I.S.E.A. juried exhibition (2009); Festival des Cinémas Différents et Expérimentaux Paris (2010); Scope Basel (2010); Traverse Video, Toulouse (2011); Director’s Lounge Festival of New Media Art, Berlin (2012). Seven videos are held in the collection of Collectif Jeune Cinema, a Paris-based international archive/distributor.

Susan Jane Picken

Gary D. Rhodes

Gary D. Rhodes, Ph.D., currently serves as MA Convenor for Film Studies at the Queen’s University in Belfast, Northern Ireland. He is the author of Emerald Illusions: The Irish in Early American Cinema (IAP, 2012) and The Perils of Moviegoing in America (Continuum, 2012), as well as the editor of such anthologies as Docufictions:  Essays on the Intersection of Documentary and Fictional Filmmaking (McFarland, 2005). Rhodes is also the writer-director of numerous documentary films, including Lugosi: Hollywood's Dracula (1997) and Banned in Oklahoma (2004). 

Ros Silvester

Ros Silvestre is a Lecturer in French Studies at QUB. One strand of my research concerns the experimental films of Gao Xingjian, a francophone Chinese artist, and focuses especially on his use of intermediality, such as the mixing of documentary and fictional elements. More widely, I have an interest in phenomenological approaches to the interpretation of films and have reviewed books on existentialism/theories of being applied to contemporary French-language cinema. 

Stuart Sloan

Stuart Sloan. Having completed both a BA and MA in film at Queen's University Belfast, Stuart started editing feature documentaries in the USA in 2010.  He has worked on films shown on PBS, at SXSW and San Francisco Film Festival, among many other festivals worldwide, working with Sundance and Cannes-winning directors, and Oscar-nominated producers.  In Northern Ireland, Stuart has produced Voices of the New Belfast, a video project on migrants in Belfast and co-founded Second Chance Cinema, a Belfast-based pop-up cinema organisation, who specialise in documentaries and programming for various festivals across Northern Ireland.  He is currently editing a film about one woman's childbirth, Of Woman Born, and is the documentary programmer for the Belfast Film Festival. and


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