Mark Albiston has racked up awards at festivals in Cannes, Berlin and Salt Lake City, thanks to short films Run and The Six Dollar Fifty Man (which he co-directed with Louis Sutherland). After a UK OE, Albiston returned home to launch Sticky Pictures, where he began winning gongs for arts shows The Living Room and The Gravy. Alibston and Sutherland's 2013 feature Shopping won further awards and acclaim.

I think good directors don't direct, they channel. You pick the right people for the job you want to pull off and, as long as you communicate clearly what you ‘see’, then they can grow it. Mark Albiston, in a 2007 interview with website The Big Idea
Title.jpg.118x104

Yesterday/Today - Tokio Marine Asia

2015, Director

5914.thumb.png.540x405

Shopping

2013, Writer, Director - Film

Shopping marks the feature debut of Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland, who were acclaimed for their short films. Set on the Kapiti Coast, the 80s-set drama follows half-Samoan teenager Willie (Kevin Paulo), who is seduced into a world of petty crime. Adrift in muscle cars and boozy lawn parties, he finds stirrings of love, and escape from his volatile Pākehā father. Little brother Solomon (Julian Dennison) must fend for himself. Selected for the Berlin and Sundance Film Festivals, Shopping went on a winning spree at the 2013 NZ Film Awards (including Best Film and Screenplay).

Title.jpg.118x104

Blakey

2011, Director, Editor

5507.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Four, Episode 11 (Prisons)

2009, Executive Producer - Television

This episode of The Gravy takes an in-depth look at art in prisons. Host Warren Maxwell interviews inmates who have embraced painting or carving while serving time in Mt Eden, Paremoremo and Rimutaka prisons. At Rimutaka, art tutor Paul Bradley points out that art is a vehicle for change both for prisoners and the art audience, and former prisoners talk about how art has changed their lives for the better. Outside the walls, Warren visits at a caged exhibit of musical instruments at Artspace in Auckland and plays a few bars on the flute.

5506.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Four, Episode One (Taranaki)

2009, Camera, Executive Producer - Television

Little Bushman muso Warren Maxwell goes west in this edition of The Gravy, to meet a trio of artists creating work in the shadow of Mt Taranaki. Waru Wharehoka, an autistic painter, makes abstract works, is obsessed with weapons and zombies, and takes Maxwell on a paddle beneath New Plymouth. Assemblage artist Dale Copeland scavenges plane wrecks on the mountain and dead friend's teeth for her art. And photographer Fiona Clark discusses why she used colour film to snap her controversial 1975 drag queen images, and using a photo to help save the Waitara River.

5508.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Four, Episode 12 (Paint)

2009, Executive Producer - Television

This fourth season edition of the award-winning arts series is all about paint. Host Ross Liew meets three artists who are exploring the medium's expressive possibilities in diverse ways: Ally Maher uses paint to portray corrosion, patina and the breaking down of surfaces; he reveals the work he did on the now-scuppered vessel Manuia for Peter Jackson’s King Kong. Helen Calder uses gravity, coaxing paint off the surface to make new shapes and Glenn Burrell encases objects in paint to form a skin and removes the original object, leaving a paint replica.

5134.key.jpg.540x405

The Six Dollar Fifty Man

2009, Co-Director, Story

5504.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Three, Episode 11

2008, Camera - Television

In this installment of Sticky Pictures' award-winning art series, the show visits the idiosyncratic Matthew Squire of Levin — whose emergence as a painter in the wake of a life-changing accident is retold with poignant wit. Back in Wellington, Kerry Ann-Lee explains the influence of her Chinese heritage and hardcore-punk on her prolific run of 'zines' and collage-based work. Finally, conceptual artist Gill Gatfield prepares for an exhibition of sculptures using materials as varied as grass, electrified wire and disposable nappies.

5502.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Two, Episode Four

2008, Camera, Director - Television

In this episode of Sticky Pictures' show "about creative people, made by creative people", Dominic Hoey (aka MC Tourettes) charts his journey from drumming in "really shitty" punk bands as a teenager to being published in national poetry journal Landfall; artist Liyen Chong talks to Ross Liew about her Malaysian heritage and its influence on her intricate, complex artwork (including miniature prints made from hair); and the show joins animal-rights activist turned stencil artist Pete Howard on a late-night postering mission.

5918.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Three, Episode 13

2008, Director, Camera, Editor, Executive Producer - Television

In this episode of The Gravy Warren Maxwell employs the services of Wellington architect Gerald Melling. En route the Liverpudlian recalls his path down under, via underground publishing and scandal in 60s Toronto to designing punchy, idiosyncratic Kiwi buildings. These include the Signal Box house (Home New Zealand 2008 House of the Year) which lets the brake off the metaphorical possibilities of its Masterton location. Gabe McDonnell then looks at Richard Meros' obsession with Helen Clark, and its 'adaptation' for theatre by young lover/playwright Arthur Meek.

5503.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series Three, Episode One (Little Bushmen vs Auckland Philharmonia)

2008, Director, Camera, Editor, Executive Producer - Television

This episode of the Sticky Pictures’ arts show covers a 13 July 2008 concert that combined the musical talents of the Little Bushman with composer John Psathas and the Auckland Philharmonia. Trinity Roots alumnus Warren Maxwell is the frontman for Little Bushman and is a behind-the-scenes guide as they prepare their trademark psychedelic blues for Psathas (Olympics 2004 opening ceremony score composer) to wrangle for orchestral collaboration. Philharmonia met harmonica in one-off gig at Auckland Town Hall. The doco was directed by Mark Albiston.

5498.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series One, Episode Three

2007, Producer, Editor - Television

The Gravy, like its predecessor The Living Room (also produced by Sticky Pictures) was a fresh antidote to your standard 'worthy' arts series. In this episode, we meet The Damned Evangelist — a Lyttelton surf-punk trio inspired by B-movies and religious quackery; taxidermist Jacquelyn Greenbank, displaying her sideline in royally-themed crochet; and lastly a comically disturbing dispatch from Rachel Davies as she seeks out Jeremy Randerson, method actor-turned-proprietor of the legendary Foxton Fizz soda factory.

5499.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series One, Episode 12 (Sex and Art Special)

2007, Producer - Television

This NSFW episode of Sticky Pictures' award-winning arts series is dedicated to exploring the 'sexy side' of buttoned-down New Zealand — from traditional burlesque to erotic sculpture fashioned from export quality butter. Featured are Wellington illustrator Simon Morse, visual artist Stuart Shepherd, performer Tanya Drewery (aka Magenta Diamond) and feminist photographer Siren Deluxe. Also making a cameo appearance — hold on to your rosary beads — the infamous 'Virgin In A Condom'. This Qantas Award-nominated episode was directed by the late Phill England.

5212.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Gravy - Series One, Episode Four (Tigilau Ness)

2007, Producer - Television

Hosted by Francis Kora, this episode of The Gravy is the story of musician and anti-apartheid activist Tigilau (Tigi) Ness, who during the 1970s joined the Polynesian Panthers movement in Auckland. Tigi Ness, the father of hip hop musician Che Fu, recalls his childhood in central Auckland and troubled times with the 1974 dawn raids and protests during the 1981 Springbok rugby tour for which he served nine months in prison. It’s also the story of his musical life in reggae bands such as Unity Pacific. Animated segment The Truth takes a look at lambs.

Title.jpg.118x104

16 Sleepless Nights

2007, Director, Producer, Cinematographer, Editor

471.key.jpg.540x405

Run

2007, Director

10571.thumb.png.540x405

The Gravy

2007 - 2009, Director, Executive Producer, Camera - Television

The Gravy was made for TVNZ by Sticky Pictures. The award-winning arts series was described as a “30 minute tour through creative Aotearoa” — usually featuring three stories per episode, but with every fourth show showcasing one subject. Conceived as “a show about creative people made by creative people, both in front of the camera and behind”, it featured presenters who were practising artists: photographer/graphic artist Ross Liew, musician Warren Maxwell, and writer Gabe McDonnell. In total, roughly 170 artists were profiled across The Gravy's 52 episodes.

The living room series 3 key title.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series Three

2006, Camera, Producer, Director

422.thumb.png.540x405

The Magical World of Misery

2006, Director, Producer - Television

Director Mark Albiston takes viewers on a magical tour of the work of artist Tanya Thompson, aka Misery. The Sticky Pictures film explores Misery's early years as a prominent but self-conscious graffiti artist on the streets of Auckland and looks at the rise of her successful art, fashion and toy empire, culminating in a visit to the Taipei Toy Festival to showcase her collectable 3D characters. Winner of Best NZ arts/festival documentary award at 2006 Qantas Film and TV awards.

All the young fachists.jpg.540x405

All the Young Fascists

2005, Director - Music video

Director Mark Albiston (Six Dollar Fifty Man) crafts a frenetic clip for a politically-charged song, belted out by the iconic Kiwi rockers with the allegorical assistance of a praying mantis.   "Praying mantids are fun to work with, remarkably photogenic and not scared of anything! I worked with Aaron Beck who shot most of the mantis stuff in his bedroom with flashing background lights on DV camera with standard 35mm lens stuck on backwards to the front element. The mantis stuff on the mic was shot on location with the band on 16mm." Mark Albiston - Feb 09

Title.jpg.118x104

War of the Words

2005, Co-Director, Producer

The living room s02e01.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series Two, Episode One

2004, Camera, Director, Producer - Television

Roots reggae act Kora present this Living Room episode from the beach at Whakatane — hometown for the four Queenstown-based brothers. Then ex-Mental As Anything guitarist Reg Mombassa (born in NZ as Chris O'Doherty) talks from his Sydney home about his iconic artworks for Mambo — including the notorious Australian Jesus series — and wonders if he is turning into a blowfly. And finally there’s a profile of self-taught outsider artist Martin Thompson, whose painstaking mathematically-based work has travelled from Wellington community workshops to Wallpaper* magazine.

238.thumb.png.540x405

The Living Room - Series Two, Episode Ten

2004, Director, Producer, Camera - Television

This final episode from the second series of the award-winning arts series is presented by Taika Cohen (aka Taika Waititi) "from the living room at Gunter’s house". Taika talks about making short film Tama Tū, meets Diego a 200-year-old vampire,and performs Taika’s Incredible Show at Bats. It includes excerpts from little-seen short John & Pogo. Also featured are artist Siren Maclaine (aka Siren Deluxe) and her feminist erotica; Caroline Robinson’s large scale Auckland motorway sculptures; and legendary comics artist Colin Wilson (Judge Dredd, Blueberry).

4035.key.jpg.540x405

Models

2004, Director - Music video

The darkly arresting imagery of this Fanatics video — featuring leather clad models marching in robotic unison — was almost not to be, according to director Mark Albiston. "The band said 'do what you want — but no models'. I said 'what if we put them in jars'? They said...'mmmm... ok'." This swift negotiation lead to an industrial setting (the generator room under Wellington Hospital), with an army of models being baptised, energised and commercialised. The song was later used as the opening theme for New Zealand's Next Top Model.

The living room season two.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series Two (excerpts)

2004 - 2005, Director, Camera, Editor, Producer - Television

A magazine show with an edge, The Living Room did for arts television production what Radio With Pictures did for NZ music — it ripped open the venetian blinds, rearranged the plastic-covered cushions, and shone the light on Aotearoa’s homegrown creative culture. Often letting the subjects film and present their own stories, it was produced for three series by Wellington’s Sticky Pictures. These excerpts from the second series have everything from outsider artist Martin Thompson making art from maths, to horror hamming it up with Taika's Incredible Show.

Title.jpg.118x104

Vodafone X-Air

2003 - 2006, Producer, Presenter, Editor, Co-Director

2650.thumb.png.540x405

Dead End

2003, Writer, Producer, Editor, Director - Short Film

Before their award-winning short films Run and Six Dollar Fifty Man (both invited to Cannes, in 2007 and 2009 respectively), Mark Albiston and Louis Sutherland gave early notice of their talents with this short. Made to showcase the work of students from drama school Toi Whakaari, Dead End chronicles the tensions and preparations as various people converge for a funeral. Director Albiston utilises imaginative angles, music, humour and surprise to inject energy into a familiar scenario. Invited to film festivals in NZ, Sydney and Ourense (Spain). 

The living room s1e5 key image.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One, Episode Five

2002, Producer, Editor - Television

This episode from The Living Room is presented by Wellington band Trinity Roots. First stop is a dans paleis, where competitors (including Fat Freddys' DJ Mu) tweak samples in a battle for the MPC heavyweight title. Then Dunedin artist Phil Frost tours his studio, talks skulls and bones and skate video Tulgonia Two (where broken ankles are the price of filming mad tricks). Poet Cameron Hockly takes his words to Te Awamutu's streets; and mainlander Peter King lathe cuts bespoke records for clients from the Beastie Boys to Trinity Roots (whose True LP is cut here).  

5639.01.key.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One, Episode Eight

2002, Director, Producer, Camera, Editor - Television

Brought to you from "the Samoan Embassy" (in reality, the Naked Samoans' motel room) this episode of The Living Room follows the comedic theatre troupe during their time at the Edinburgh Fringe, before retreating to the wild west coast of the South Island where acclaimed cinematographer Alun Bollinger reflects on his diverse life and career. Also featured is the first 'proper' exhibition of Illicit artists on K' Road, (featuring the late Martin Emond) and a visit to small town Mangaweka, setting for surrealist short film Little Gold Cowboy. 

The living room s1e9 key image.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One, Episode Nine

2002, Camera, Director, Producer - Television

This episode of the series profiling creative Kiwi culture is presented by hip-hop diva Ladi6, her partner Parkes, and cousins Scribe and Matthias Luafutu. Verse 2, her act at the time (before her solo success) is profiled in her hometown of Christchurch — and Luafatu's journey from prison to drama school is explored (with glimpses of Scribe on the brink of his hugely successful recording career). Other segments visit the air guitar champs and find director Brendan Donovan in New York where he made his debut short with Six Million Dollar Man Lee Majors.

The living room s1e1 key image.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One, Episode One

2002, Camera, Director, Producer - Television

The debut episode in this TV series profiling creative Kiwi culture is presented by Wellington band The Black Seeds and features a look at the making of their manic music video Hey Son (when Conchord Bret McKenzie was still a member). There’s an early profile of Auckland graffiti and streetwear artist Misery (complete with cycle interview and an appearance from fellow artist Elliot 'Askew' O'Donnell), London based Ta Moko artist Te Rangitu Netana talks about life away from home and tattooing Robbie Williams, and there’s a piece about skateboarding mag Manual.

The living room s1e2 key image.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One, Episode Two

2002, Director, Producer - Television

This early episode from the award-winning arts series drops in on the Urale sisters — directors Sima and Makerita and publicist Maila — in the living room of their Lyall Bay fale. The prolific Samoan-Kiwi siblings visit local haunts, discuss work, and brother Bill (aka King Kapisi) is mentioned in dispatches. Other Kiwi creatives featured include 'nu jazz' practitioner Mark de Clive-Lowe playing at Cargo in London; designer Ross Stevens building his challenging Happy Valley shipping container conversion; and Cannons Creek beatbox king Dougie B breaking it down.

10572.thumb.png.540x405

The Living Room

2002 - 2006, Producer, Director - Television

A magazine show with an edge, The Living Room did for arts television production what Radio With Pictures did for NZ music — it ripped open the venetian blinds, rearranged the plastic-covered cushions, and shone the light on Aotearoa’s homegrown creative culture. Often letting the subjects film and present their own stories, it was produced for three series by Wellington’s Sticky Pictures, who also made follow-up arts showcase The Gravy. Amidst the calvacade of local talent, were Flight of the Conchords (series one) in one of their earliest screen outings.

The living room seris 1 key title.jpg.540x405

The Living Room - Series One (excerpts)

2002 - 2003, Camera, Director, Editor, Producer - Television

A magazine show with an edge, The Living Room did for arts television production what Radio With Pictures did for NZ music — it ripped open the venetian blinds, rearranged the plastic-covered cushions, and shone the sun on Aotearoa’s homegrown creative culture. Often letting the subjects film and present their own stories, it was produced for three series by Wellington’s Sticky Pictures, who also made follow-up arts showcase The Gravy. These excerpts from the first series show a calvacade of local talent, including an early Flight of the Conchords screen outing.