Simon Payne has been making experimental cinema works for over twenty years. His videos are predominantly orientated around bold graphic forms, primary and secondary colours, and highly structured sequences that produce conflicting planes and unexpected effects. Sometimes there are contingent elements in his work that correspond with incidental indications of the artist’s hand. The systems that underpin his videos involve the entirety of the screen and every edge. Their effects spill out of the screen, to illuminate the spaces in which they are shown in remarkable ways.
His work has been shown in numerous international film festivals, cinemas and art galleries including the Ann Arbor, Edinburgh, London and Rotterdam international film festivals; Anthology Film Archives, New York; the European Media Arts Festival, Osnabrück; Pacific Film Archives, San Francisco; Media City, Windsor, Ontario and the Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg. In the UK his work has shown at the Camden Arts Centre; Tate Britain and Tate Modern; the Serpentine Gallery and the Whitechapel Gallery. His videos are distributed by LUX (London) and Lightcone (Paris). They are also kept at the British Artists' Film and Video Study Collection at Central St. Martins College of Art, University of the Arts London.
Simon Payne has also written widely on experimental cinema for a number of journals and magazines. He co-edited the book Kurt Kren: Structural Films, and edited a posthumous book by A.L. Rees, Fields of View: Film, Art and Spectatorship, in 2020. He is Associate Professor in Film and Media at ARU, Cambridge, and lives in London.
Since 2013 Simon Payne has been programming the series Contact with Andrew Vallance.