Open City Documentary Festival creates an open space in London to nurture and champion the art of non-fiction cinema. Based at the UCL Centre for Public Anthropology, we deliver training programmes, an annual documentary festival, the bi-annual Non-Fiction journal and events throughout the year that aim to challenge and expand the idea of documentary in all its forms.
Open City Documentary Festival seeks to nurture experimentation within the expanded field of non-fiction cinema, from artists’ moving image to documentary, the essay film, audio and cross-media works. In conceiving the festival as a discursive space, we intend to provoke dialogue, creation and research through the collective participation in screenings and events. Some of the artists and filmmakers screened at the festival in recent years include Luke Fowler, Kazuo Hara, Laura Huertas Millán, Onyeka Igwe, Naomi Kawase, Zhao Liang, Simon Liu, Rosine Mbakam, Pablo Álvarez Mesa, Miko Revereza, Jessica Sarah Rinland, Renate Sami, Haneda Sumiko, Alia Syed, Anya Tsyrlina, Ana Vaz and Morgan Quaintance.
Non-Fiction is a journal from Open City Documentary Festival. The publication was launched in 2020 with the aim to create a space for considered, critical and creative writing on non-fiction, featuring contributions offered in response to moving image, audio or cross-media, both contemporary and historical. The first two issues (#1 Power and #2 Network) were edited by Matt Turner and published in print form. In 2021, Non-Fiction moved online in order to be more widely accessible. We aim to publish two issues a year, each edited by a different guest editor. Non-Fiction #3 The Living Journal is edited by Olivier Marboeuf and Ana Vaz. Non-Fiction #4 Peculiar Forms is edited by Aily Nash.