Ms Victoria Mapplebeck

Personal profile

Victoria Mapplebeckis an award winning writer, artist and director. She is also Reader in Digital Arts at Royal Holloway, University of London. Victoria has been commissioned to produce films and interactive artworks for BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art, Film Four, Film London, Channel 4 and The Arts Council. She wrote and directed Channel 4’s first interactive documentary series, Smart Hearts, in which web cams streamed live from the subject’s homes for over 18 months. Victoria’s research explores how interactive documentary has evolved since the late 90s. In 2014, Victoria wrote and directed TEXT ME an award winning interactive arts project produced in partnership with BALTIC Centre for Contemporary Art. TEXT ME is a live and online platform which creates an evolving and living archive in which users are encouraged to collect, curate and share stories from their digital past. TEXT ME won The Merging Media Prize for Best European Cross platform Project and The 2014 Pixel Lab Prize. The Pixel Lab, ‘Supports the film and media industries in their transition to a digital age, specialising in new ways to engage with audiences across multiple platforms’.  Text Me was also featured in Wired magazine and selected forUniversity UK’s 20 Ideas for Life.

 Over the last few years, Victoria has begun to specialise in smartphone production and making short form online video with impact.  In 2015, Victoria filmed and directed 160 Characters a smartphone short for Film London. Shot entirely on an iPhone 6, 160 Characters brings to life the secrets buried in a vintage Nokia. It won the Best Documentary Award at the 2017 Short of the Week Film Awards and was short listed for the Innovation category of the2016 AHRC Research in Film AwardsWhen the film launched online it received a Vimeo Staff pick and has since gathered over a million online hit. 

In 2017, Victoria shot and directed Missed Call,  a smartphone short which explored the relationship between the filmmaker and her teenage son Jim as they work out how to reconnect with his father who’s been absent for a decade. Missed Call was the first commissioned short film to be shot on the iPhone X and recently won the Social Media Short Award at the 2018 AHRC Research in Film Awards . In 2017, Victoria won a place at Ravensboune VR UK Betalab, a one week lab designed to test and experience the latest advances in VR, AR, MR, 360 filmmaking and binaural sound.

Victoria writes regularly about Documentary and VR for The Guardian, The Huffington Post and The Conversation. She has also written a chapter on Smart Hearts for Reality TV: How Real is Real? – Hodder and Stoughton. This essay explored the development of interactive documentary and technological storytelling and was later republished in The Tabloid Culture Reader- (McGraw Hill 2008)

Victoria has given lectures and keynotes at The Banff New Media Institute, Sheffield Doc Fest, IDFA, The V and A and is interviewed regularly for ITV, BBC and and Sky news on developments in digital archives and interactive storytelling. Victoria is currently in production on a new smartphone short for The Guardian.  Films, articles and more info at the link below:


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  • This is England Film Festival Rouen

    Activity: OtherPublic engagement, outreach and knowledge exchange - Festival/exhibition

  • ITV News

    Activity: OtherPublic engagement, outreach and knowledge exchange - Participation in TV programme

  • The Sunday Times

    Activity: OtherPublic engagement, outreach and knowledge exchange - Newspaper/magazine

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