Culture Colony is both a video production company making films about the arts, the environment or community and, through the web site, it's also an online platform for sharing content serving the creative sector. 

Clients for our film making services range from individual artists to large national cultural organisations. Culture Colony has extended its client base to include environmental organisations to take every opportunity we can to share messages and tell stories about the climate crisis and mass extinctions facing us on a global scale.

Membership of this online community is open to anyone anywhere and can be joined through this web site. This web site is a place for videos, articles, news and listings about the arts and art practice. It is our intention to provide a platform for creativity and promote artistic endeavour, engaging an audience with quality content that can not be found all in one place elsewhere. Culture Colony is about making and sharing stories that explore ideas and process' for anyone with an interest to enjoy.

All of the content on this web site is created by Culture Colony. 

Culture Colony provided the cameras and operators for the live screens for National Theatre Wales' production of Coriolan/Us as well as documenting the behind the scenes development of the production and the final performance itself.

CC

Culture Colony has 25 years experience of programme making for television* and now concentrate almost exclusively on the arts and environment creating online video content. CC makes films for and with individual artists, artist groups and large arts organisations. These films range from short documentation and promotional films to full blown feature documentaries. Our services also include, music videos, 360 videos, behind the scenes content and livestreams of events or shows . All of these films can be found on this Culture Colony web site. CC also provides the facilities for this web site to provide the cultural sector with a new live broadcasting service - enhancing the potential audience for events whether its a single person performance in the artists studio or an international conference. 

Shani Rhys James in her studio 2004. Photo Pete Telfer

*Culture Colony's television experience comes from it's founder Pete Telfer's background of directing for the BBC in the early 90's, then going freelance and working for many broadcasters and independent production companies, through to co-founding the television production company Pixel Foundry in 2004 that then became Culture Colony in 2010.

The Culture Colony Story

Just over ten years ago the television production company Pixel Foundry moved its focus from making programmes for television to creating online content and became Culture Colony. But, the influences that have shaped and moulded Culture Colony can be traced further back to the 1990's and even the 1980's.

In 1980 the founder of Culture Colony, Pete Telfer, was enrolled onto the Arts Foundation Course at Bangor College. It's here that Pete met the artist Paul Davies, one of his tutours on the course.

Paul Davies 1986 photo Pete Telfer

On returning home to Wales after studying at Maidstone art college Pete sought out Paul once again and they became friends. They had many adventures together and shared a philosophy that art is for everyone and should be everywhere. They arranged art exhibitions in unlikely places with plans to make exhibitions in petrol stations, cafe's and anywhere that might provide an audience, even if that audience was unaware that they were in an art exhibition.

With his brother, Peter Davies, Paul had founded the art group 'Beca' in the mid 70's. The name was derived from 'Merched Beca' (Rebecca's Daughters) of the 'Rebecca Riots' that took place between 1839 - 1843 in West and Mid Wales where poverty stricken tennant farmers and labourers, disguised as women, attacked and burnt down wealthy landowners toll gates (to get to market the farmers had to cross the lands of wealthy owners who were demanding payments, taking the little profit that could be made from selling produce. On top of paying extortionate rents to the landowners, toll gates were the final straw). Beca is a radical art group that dosen't shy away from politics and highlights injustice. Beca has a focus on issues in Wales and the Welsh language with an international outlook. Pete joined the group along with others such as Ifor Davies, Iwan Bala, Tim Davies, Shelagh Hourahane and others.

Paul also introduced Pete to AADW (the Association of Artists and Designers in Wales). AADW had a magazine called 'Link' (editor Ifor Davies) and branches throughout Wales. It is this foundation of ideas, influenced by Paul, Beca and AADW, that has resulted today in Culture Colony and this web site.

Before Culture Colony Pete spent many years making programmes for television, travelling the world and gaining experience. Paul passed away suddenly in 1993. Pete co-founded the tv production company Pixel Foundry in 2004. In 2008 Pete identified a reason for Culture Colony to come into being and in 2010 changed the name of the production company from Pixel Foundry to Culture Colony and established the web site.

The creation of Culture Colony was caused by the three main broadcasters in Wales ending the commissioning of arts programmes on their channels. Where the creative sector had once enjoyed receiving mass media coverage through television, with a magazine programme on each channel every week, reaching many people from all walks of life (many would not otherwise be exposed to the ideas and innovation of the arts), suddenly there was nothing.... Theatres couldn't get their shows promoted, galleries couldn't entice people into their exhibitions and artists couldn't tell their stories on television. Not only was a wider public no longer being informed about developments in the art world, there was no archive being maintained. Not only was an audience interested in the arts being disenfranchised but future generations were not going to have access to documentation about the times we're living through now. Pete felt there should be uproar about this, but there wasn't.

In no way did Pete assume he could single handedly document the arts in Wales and maintain an archive to inform the future, but he decided to have a go and committed himself to filming the arts as best he can. This was the initial spark that grew to become Culture Colony.

At Culture Colony our intention is to document the arts and create content to the highest broadcast standards regardless of budget. We are greatful to the Arts Council of Wales for recognising the value of Culture Colony to the creative sector and for their support in helping us achive these ambitious goals, initially through a retainer for several years and more recently with their Covid Recovery Grants. 

Good Cop Bad Cop performing on the roof of Culture Colony's first office space at Aberystwyth Arts Centre in 2009.

CC scans above and below the radar to capture the spirit of the contemporary arts scene – drawing out the voices of artists and practitioners, encouraging manifestation of their work, more than just representation. With high production values and a growing list of exciting colaborators, the focus is on the contemporary arts and their many contexts.

Culture Colony has also provided the opportunity for art interventions. Inspired by Paul Davies' interventions Culture Colony Interventions have taken place on a roof in Aberystwyth and through a relationship with MOMA Machynlleth

Below is a photograph of 'Wales Film Map' a Paul Davies/Beca intervention at the inaugural meeting to establish the (short lived) Film Photography and Video Association of Wales.

 

CCTeam

Founder of the original Culture Colony website in 2010 Pete Telfer is the director of CC. He has 25 years of broadcast experience in television. During that time Pete made films for every arts magazine programme on BBC Wales, HTV/ITV1 Wales and S4C (the Slate, Dim Ond Celf, High Performance, Y Sioe Gelf, Artyfax, Double Yellow, and others) this foundation gave him a broad knowledge of the arts scene in Wales and the art forms being practiced that he is now putting to good use making artist films, and films about art and artists, for online audiences.

Felix has a BA in film-making from Aberystwyth University, a diploma in Music from Brighton Institute of Modern Music and a foundation in Art from Coleg Ceredigion. Having a wide range of interests, Felix has performed in a number of bands, has experience working on a popular book franchise at Penguin and he writes fiction as a hobby. He worked as a freelance photographer before apprenticing with and eventually taking a directorial role at Culture Colony. At Culture Colony, Felix has directed promotional films, assisted on numerous documentaries and is head technician for livestreams.  Felix creates dramatically structured narratives which keep viewers engaged from start to finish.

Lowri Page is a filmmaker from the Tanat Valley here in Wales. She hails from an artistic background with both of her parents actively involved in the arts. From an early age she was exposed to a multitude of art with her and her family frequently visiting art galleries across the UK. Her love for creativity led her to Aberystwyth University where she went on to acheive a BA in Film and Television. Throughout her time as a filmmaker, she has made numerous films specifically documenting artists and their creative process. Lowri also writes and has aspirations of one day translating her writings across multiple mediums of art.

As Culture Colony’s newest addition, Kieron Shand brings a fresh perspective on video production with his recent BA Hons in Filmmaking. His outgoing and cordial essence has enabled him to reach out to fellow artists and collaborate on a variety of projects. As a skateboarder, he is passionate about using his filmmaking ability to make the sport more accesible and mainstream in Wales.  He recently formed an Aberystwyth based skateboarding collective called ‘Garlic’, where he films skaters and makes stylized edits of them on their travels across Wales and the rest of the UK. 

Suzy Kemp looks after the finances at Culture Colony. She has a background in the arts, as a puppeteer for many years making puppets and performing throughout Wales and beyond (to Glastonbury Festival and many other places). Suzy also teaches art part time at Coleg Ceredigion specifically for students with additional learning requirements.