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Max Colson - The Green and Pleasant Land

The Green and Pleasant Land film extract
Max Colson

Taking as its subject our different perceptions of the British landscape, the film is a roaming exploration of our national identity and collective history. Using a 3D model of the United Kingdom, a variety of visual scenarios – poignant, nostalgic and absurd – are enacted using a ‘live’ animation technique. These scenes draw directly on user comments found below the line of videos and online newspaper articles concerning the English and British countryside.

What emerges is a meditation on the British landscape – both as an imaginary vision and as a new world digitally constructed. Colson’s animation practice draws mainly on his concurrent interests in digital architectural visualisation, landscape planning and video game walkthroughs. The latter is a popular genre of YouTube film making in which one user walks through the completion of a video game, identifying hidden obstacles and tricks, to help other users do the same. Colson’s video work increasingly draws on the techniques found in these online videos to show the construction of specific architectures and landscapes, while exploring the speculative viewpoints of the ‘users’ who inhabit these spaces.



The Green and Pleasant Land is the outcome of Colson’s residency period at the gallery earlier this year. During his residency, Colson started by investigating how architecture, urban planning, and real estate developments operate peripherally and within cities, and how they will influence social relations and the environment in post-Brexit Britain. The exhibition ultimately questions place and identity; The Green and Pleasant Land is a site where opinion, memory, history and highly charged emotion are given form, and are opened up for discussion and critique.


Max Colson

…by arebyte showcases material created by the arebyte team and educational partners, relating to our physical shows in the gallery, as well as previous screen based works by alumni artists. For this strand of AOS arebyte will curate and create content in relation with the physical shows taking place in the gallery space, as well as feature arebyte’s alumni work commissioned by the gallery since 2013. This visual material will allow arebyte to expand on the theme addressed by its physical exhibitions and will be a place for art audiences to further explore, interact and engage with the arebyte programme.

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