Set up in 1977, the North West Film Archive preserves moving images made in or about Greater Manchester, Lancashire, Cheshire, Merseyside and Cumbria and offers a variety of access services to users in the public, academic and commercial sectors.
This film is part of Free
A Visit to an Art School
What do artists do all day? Join the art students of Manchester to find out.
Amateur film 1929 34 mins Silent
From the collection of:
Pottery and fashion design, etching and metalwork, sculpting and woodcarving, painting and still life drawing - aspiring young artists and designers in Manchester improve their skills while pursuing their career dreams in this fascinating and beautifully filmed record from the inter-war years, shot by their fellow School of Art student George Higginson.
George Higginson (1895 - 1966) was a highly skilled amateur filmmaker whose work includes travelogues and award-winning scientific documentaries. Originally trained as a cotton engineer, he served in the army in World War One, before enrolling in his early thirties at Manchester School of Art; he later went on to teach drawing and painting at Bolton School for Boys.
The Arts on Film
1972 10 mins Location: Mayfair
A painterly profile of County Durham's brilliant miner-artist Tom McGuinness.
Documentary 1953 17 mins Silent Location: St Ives
A poetic portrait of sculptor Barbara Hepworth and the otherworldly Cornish landscapes which inspired her.
1978 29 mins
Impressionistic portrait of life as a dancer in London’s Ballet Rambert.
Documentary 1967 14 mins
Spend a few intense minutes with Giacometti in his Paris studio and see him at work on his striking sculptures.
Documentary 1972 13 mins
Filmed at the time Hockney was painting Mr and Mrs Clark and Percy, this compelling study concentrates on the textures and light which surround the artist in his home and studio.
Documentary 1984 61 mins
Discover the 'name behind the hairstyle', in this essential portrait of the bard of Salford, aka John Cooper Clarke.
Manchester's Welcome to the Imperial Yeomanry (1901) Manchester's Welcome to the Imperial Yeomanry (1901)
Non-Fiction 1901 4 mins Silent Location: Manchester
A volunteer cavalry regiment is enthusiastically welcomed home after active service in South Africa.
Charity appeal 1934 8 mins Location: Southport
Windows of opportunity: how a charity aimed to improve the lives of blind and partially sighted people.
Documentary 1946 51 mins Location: Manchester
A brisk look at the tests and education practices for deaf people in 1940s
Promotional 1968 29 mins Location: Manchester
Faith in the inner city - the mission of the Sharon Full Gospel Church in Manchester.
Student film 1984 3 mins Location: Manchester
Infatuation amongst the bookshelves, or a mind playing tricks? The viewer can decide...
Amateur film 1993 2 mins Silent Location: Manchester
Manchester is 'Tickled Pink' with this annual celebration of LGBT life.
Documentary 2021 13 mins
A poetic response to the experience of the Coronavirus pandemic, drawing on the collections of 12 UK film archives.
Promotional 2021 1 mins
The 65th BFI London Film Festival in partnership with American Express.
1955 17 mins Location: Brighton
Kids face the closure of their Brighton playground but fight back to reclaim it, with a little help from the iconic Volks Railway
Children's 1954 59 mins Location: Goudhurst
Child actor Mandy Miller shines in this children's adventure set in the traditional hop picking season in Kent.
Short documentary 2020 19 mins
All Andy and Ben want to do is play basketball. When they join the under 16s league the boys and their new teammates take on opponents from around Yorkshire, and the challenges of growing up in inner city Leeds.
Musical 2019 13 mins
Exploring the conversation black people face when communicating their racial experience to white partners through a dynamic fusion of dance and dialogue.
About the archive
Know this place?
Do you recognise a place, building or location in this film?
Help us populate the Britain on Film map by spotting and plotting the street or location you know. This is a BFI project and anyone can help.
Go to our Britain on Film crowdsourcing site and contribute to our mapping mission – to identify locations within our archive films.Add a location