Artwalk Recommends

It’s safe to say that as the pandemic continues to wreak havoc with our social lives most of us are watching more TV than we would care to admit to. And who can blame us? It’s cold. It’s miserable. And worst of all, lockdown 3.0 has forced us all back inside.

These are difficult times and we know that people are struggling to stay positive. Especially in a world where it's possible to have completed Netflix, who knew that would be a thing?

So we wanted to provide you with recommendations for some much needed distraction… that's right, more films!

Art House cinema, Animations, Classics, Documentaries and more. All inspired by, about, or made by artists and all available to stream online now.

“We love films because they make us feel something. They speak to our desires, which are never small. They allow us to escape and to dream and to gaze into the eyes that are impossibly beautiful and huge. They fill us with longing. But also. They tell us to remember; they remind us of life.” 

- Nina LaCour, Everything Leads to You

Rivers and Tides

“To quote the blurb, 'Rivers and Tides' is a mesmerising and beautifully photographed film about Andy Goldsworthy, one of Britain's best-known sculptors.

This hour and a half documentary about Andy Goldsworthy's creative process is a must watch for anyone who loves his work. If you had a chance to catch his incredible show at Yorkshire Sculpture park a few years ago then I would highly recommend giving this a watch.”

- Jen Garrick

Amazon Prime >

Leaning Into the Wind

“Watched Rivers and Tides and want more? 'Leaning Into the Wind' is a brilliant follow up documentary by the same filmmaker, Thomas Reidelsheimer.

This beautiful, slow film was filmed sixteen years after the release of his first collaboration with Andy Goldsworthy.

Cannot recommend this enough if you're in the mood for a soothing watch.”

- Jen Garrick

Amazon Prime >

Rockfield: The Studio on the Farm

“It tells the tale of the 2 Welsh farmers who turned their dairy farm into a recording studio and hosted some of the greatest bands from all over.

It's more of a documentary than a film but it's worth a watch if you're into your music - it made me laugh, get a bit emotional and feel very nostalgic for live music. Liam Gallagher dubbed it 'Big Brother house with tunes' - pretty much sums it up.”

- Ellie Way

BBC iPlayer >

Audio Description available.


“I'm a sucker for a Disney film and Pixar's latest animation Soul was just amazing! It's full of joy I desperately needed and brought many tears to my eyes. The animation was perfection and just a lovely story I'm sure everyone will enjoy!”

- Amy Lilley

Disney+ >

Audio Description & Closed Captions available.


Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

“I love films where it's so clear that the people making it had the best time ever. This film feels like the animators were allowed to do exactly what they want. Reminds you that animation films are an artform and the people creating them all have their own personal styles and flare.”

- Lucy Norton

Netflix >

Audio Description and Closed Captions available.

Grand Budapest Hotel

“I'm a fan for anything directed by Wes Anderson for his cinematography skills and unique way of bringing a film to life. I especially love The Grand Budapest Hotel for its colour scheme throughout, I'd definitely recommend!”

- Amelia Baron

Amazon Prime >

Closed Captions available.


Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

“The film combines my favourite genres, sci-fi and romance and the cinematography is beyond excellent. My friends and family joke that I'm the only person in the world who doesn't like Jim Carrey so considering he takes the lead in this film - it says a lot! It's a wonderful fantasy film which is rooted in such real and raw feelings surrounding relationships. An ideal piece of visual escapism.”

- Amelia Baron

Amazon Prime >

Closed Captions available.

Little Miss Sunshine

“A film that I re-watch time and time again when I need a little pick me up. A dysfunctional family travelling across the USA in a yellow VW to enter the daughter into a beauty pageant, what could go wrong?! An amazing cast and soundtrack makes this one of my favourites!”

- Amelia Baron

Amazon Prime > 

Closed Captions available.

The Square

“A brilliant dark comedy about a curator of a Stockholm art museum who falls victim to a scam as he gears up for a new show 'The Square'. I love how this film brilliantly highlights some of the art world's greatest absurdities!”

- Jen Garrick

Amazon Prime >

Includes Subtitles. 

Crip Camp

“This amazing documentary focuses on one of the first summer camps for young disabled people and how many of them went on to influence the American Disability Act. Produced by the Obama's it gives a very honest glimpse into the lives of disabled people and shows how we've been able to push for change and acceptance in society, as well as what needs to be done now and in the future.”

- Esther Obigbesan

Netflix >

Audio Description and Closed Captions available.

The Day I Became a Woman

“Iranian cinema is absolutely incredible. Filmmakers work under strict censorship laws and religious regulations that create a rich and exciting cinematic culture. 'The Day I Became a Woman' is a triptych of three stages of a woman's life: mother, maiden, and crone. I love the symbolism in the film that's carried through stunning cinematography and simple but powerful storytelling!”

- Keziah Berleson

Vimeo >

Includes Subtitles.

Faces Places

“This film is uplifting, tender and fun, but really poignant too. You can't help watching both of these artists, at the top of their game, travelling together, making art, creating community, and getting to know each other.

I can't think of a better film to watch now.”

- Sydney Thornbury

Amazon Prime >

Includes Subtitles.

Arts and Culture Film Libraries

When it comes to films by and about arts and culture, we're spoilt for choice with some incredible local and national collections. They're the kind of film libraries that can always be relied upon for great entertainment, education, and inspiration.

Best of all? Most of them are free to enjoy!

Here are just a few of our favourites:


BFI National Archive

The British Film Institute offer thousands of free Documentaries, compilation films and much more. They have various categories including 'Most popular from 2020' featuring incredible stories, historical events, and visuals.

Watch now >


Tate Gallery

Here you'll find plenty of videos and lots of audio content to suit all tastes on the Tate website. You'll find short films on everyone from filmmaker and photographer Catherine Yass, to artist Derek Jarman. We recommend checking out their Create Like an Artist series of instructional films inspired by artists like Rachel Whiteread, Andy Warhol and Frank Bowling. 

You can also listen to Q&As, background information on artists before and after film screenings and more. 

Watch now >  


Culture in Quarantine – BBC iPlayer

You’ll find short films, documentaries, programs made in lockdown, masterclasses covering all art mediums, craft projects and more on the Culture in Quarantine section of BBC iPlayer. There’s also a new 'creatives' sub-section showcasing burgeoning artists. Audio description is also available on some shows.

Watch now >


Arts, Culture, and the Media - BBC Sounds

Fancy a break from watching? Don't worry, the BCC have got you covered on that front too. BBC Sounds has countless podcasts, interviews and playlists spanning many topics, with some seriously good arts and culture content. They're all free to stream via the app or online.

Listen now >


The Art House

We'd be remiss if we didn't mention our our film repository at The Art House! Make sure to check out our most recent film, ‘A gift from The Art House’, a collaborative project, celebrating creativity, unity, and art. A thousand gift boxes were created, packed, and distributed to children across the district for Christmas 2020.

While you’re there, you can also check out films from past artist residencies, exhibitions, and projects too.

Watch now >


Yorkshire Sculpture Park

YSP's website offers a great collection of short videos from explorations of previous exhibitions to artist films and content to supplement your visits to the park. Make sure to check back as new videos are added regularly.

Watch now >


The Hepworth Gallery, Wakefield

The Hepworth's YouTube channel has films for everyone, whether you're looking to entertain/educate the kids, you're a die-hard art lover or just have an enquiring mind. You'll find talks and interviews, behind the scenes footage at the gallery, and short films documenting past exhibitions.

Watch now >



Know of some other sources for great arts and culture films?

Share your recommendations with us on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook using #ArtwalkFilmNight and #ArtwalkAtHome. 

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