Katharine Round

Artist & Filmmaker


My work is driven by a deep curiosity towards "ordinary" human beings: our contradictions, humanity and fallibility as we attempt to make sense of the world.

I often explore specific situations that illuminate wider thematic ideas, with formalist intervention to “provoke reality” and uncover new ways of seeing our lives. I don’t hide my presence and aim to question myself as much as I do others, and as such, I acknowledge a vision of the world through "imperfect" eyes: a cinema of lies as much as of truth. 

My films and moving image works have been shown in cinemas, television, art galleries, online, and on the street. I’ve had support from the Arts Council, BFI, Creative Europe, Forma Arts, CPH:LAB, Dartmouth Films, Passion Pictures, the Guardian, Serpentine Galleries and many others.

This site acts as a notepad for past and ongoing work, nothing is permanent as I aim to share my evolving thought processes as well as the results.

My work is produced via Disobedient Films.

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Disobedient Films
10-28 Millers Avenue
London E8 2DS
Email Me: katharineround [@] gmail dot com



Auto-portrait. Tazewell, Tennessee 2022 
I was born in the north of England in the late 70s. I’ve always been an outsider. I have a deep fascination and curiosity about people and I spent most of my teenage years with a sketchpad in hand, sitting on the street, in parks, in pubs, observing life. I quickly realised my sketchpad gave me a means through which to encounter others.  As I got older, I replaced the sketchpad with a camera.

I studied documentary film at Leeds University and from there took a wide range of roles as a director, producer, and development executive. I became involved with the rapidly burgeoning independent documentary sector, establishing Doc Heads as a means for filmmakers to meet and share independent, artistic work. These early years showed me that whilst there is no one way to approach a film artistically, that working with “the real” means approaching each piece from the heart and with a curiosity to discover something I don’t already know. I only make films that I feel a connection to, and my work tends to arrive in the world in its own idiosyncratic way: in cinemas, television, in galleries, online, and on the street.

I don’t set out to “choose” stories, I find my inspiration in elements of life that intrigue me. I try and look at the things others feel are insignificant as it is often in the spaces in between that the more interesting contradictions of life are revealed. My films often include intersecting characters, formal invention, the poetic use of place and time, conversations in cars and mirrors, and the construction of “situations”. As time has gone on my work has become more personal and reflexive, often questioning the role of the filmmaker (and sometimes the viewer too) in inventing reality.

My first feature-length film, The Divide, was released in 2016. It was my first “mosaic” film, a form I have returned to in different ways since. Supported by the BFI and Creative Europe, the film premiered at Sheffield Doc/Fest to widespread critical acclaim, had a national theatrical release across 200+ UK cinemas, and broadcast on Netflix.  I’ve also worked on a number of “symphony” films, producing the Michael Powell Award nominee London Symphony, and creating and directing the “live documentaries” Twelve Thousand Years in Fragments and Anthropocene in C Major, part of the collaborative multidisciplinary Climate Symphony project supported by CPH:DOX, Serpentine Galleries, Forma Arts and Arts Council England. I’m currently working on two films that explore the car as a provocative documentary “situation”. 

I co-founded Disobedient Films in 2014, and filmmakers collective Doc Heads in 2009. In 2018 I was asked to run a summer school at UCL’s Open City Documentary School, which launched a parallel research and teaching practice that has informed and aided how I approach my films. I now work as a Lecturer on the MA Ethnographic & Documentary Film at UCL, and conduct practice-based research at LCC. I have also taught and given masterclasses at Royal Holloway, London Film School, Four Corners, Sheffield Doc/Fest, BAFTA and the Roundhouse, amongst others.

Films and Works (selected)

A Japanese Ghost Story (in post-production, 2024)

Keith & I (in production, 2022-) Selected for Belfast DocMarket. Selected for Creative Europe MEDIA Development Slate. Selected for Edinburgh Pitch, Scottish Documentary Institute (2023). With support from Passion Pictures & Dartmouth Films. 

All the Films I Never Made (2022-) Work in progress selected for Visions du Reel Film Market 2022.

Ghosts in the Machine (exhibited as part of hybrid work Anthropocene in C Major) (2021) Developed as part of CPH:LAB (2018-2020). Selected for Visions du Reel Film Market 2021. World Premiere CPH:DOX 2021.

Twelve Thousand Years In Fragments (2020) Commissioned by Electric Dreams Festival of Immersive Storytelling, with support from Arts Council England. Selected for Labocine Jan 2023 Issue “Scientific Musicals”  

Oil Coal and Gas For Three Cellos (2020) Commissioned by Serpentine Galleries.

Bonded (2019)

London Symphony (2017, producer). Michael Powell Award Nominee, Arts Council award recipient. Distributed on BFIPlayer. Selected for Little White Lies 100 Greatest British Films (1905-2018)

Dearborn, Michigan (2017) Commissioned by Guardian Documentaries. Nominee Short Film Prize, Shuffle Festival.

The Walled Off Hotel (2017) Permanent film installations in hotel established by Banksy in Palestine.

Flatline (2017) Film installation at the Barbican, London as part of GHFF17. 

Climate Symphony: Labs (2017) Arts Council awarded. Produced by Forma Arts and Disobedient.

A Tale of Two Lands (2016)

The Divide (2016) Recipient MEDIA Production Award / Recipient BFI Award /Nominee Best British Film at Open City Documentary Festival. UK National cinema release. Broadcast internationally including Netflix, SundanceNow and many others. 

Testbed for a Climate Symphony (2015) part of the Serpentine Transformation Marathon

The London Recruits (2014) A “disobedient film” exploring resistance and nonconformity through form. Interactive exhibition, Disobedient Objects at the V&A.

Transplant (2011, co-director) Grierson shortlisted for BBC 1.

As Executive Producer (selected)

Once Años (directed by Emily Wright, in post production). Funded by Fondo De Desarrollo Cinematografico, with support from The Guardian and Ford Foundation.

1001 Days (directed by Kethiwe Ngcobo and Chloe White, 2023). Recipient of Bertha Foundation Award / Recipient of Lush Award /DocBarcelona Award. World Premiere Rapid Lion Festival, Johannesburg February 2023. International Premiere IDFA 2023 “Luminous” selection. UK Premiere Sheffield DocFest 2023. 

The Mortician of Manila (directed by Leah Borromeo, 2020).  Commissioned by Al Jazeera Witness. Winner Best Short Documentary Austin Film Festival. Nominated for Grierson award 2020

Listen to Britain: Learning to Swim (directed by Ruth Grimberg, 2017). Commissioned by BFI and BBC4.

Some Will Forget (directed by Ruth Grimberg2016). Commissioned by Creative England.

Nightcrawlers of Phnom Penh (directed by James Dougan, Max Cutting and Dan Ridgeon, 2016). Commissioned by Rankin.