The Diatomist

March 26, 2014

THE DIATOMIST is a short documentary about Klaus Kemp, master of the Victorian art of diatom arrangement.

Diatoms are single cell algae that create jewel-like glass shells around themselves. Microscopists of the Victorian era would arrange them into complex patterns, invisible to the naked eye but spectacular when viewed under magnification. Klaus Kemp has devoted his entire life to understanding and perfecting diatom arrangement and he is now acknowledged as the last great practitioner of this beautiful combination of art and science. THE DIATOMIST showcases his incredible work.

Soundtrack by Ryuichi Sakamoto, Bernard Herrmann and Cults Percussion Ensemble.

MATTHEW KILLIP is a graduate of the National Film and Television School in the UK. His short documentaries have been broadcast on UK television and played at film festivals around the world, including Sundance and True/False. He also works as an editor, most notably having collaborated over multiple projects with the artist Jeremy Deller and the director Michael Almereyda. He lives in New York.