Andrew Garton is an independent filmmaker, musician and writer with a background in community access media. After a decade of music-making in the 1980s, his interest in participatory democracy and the distribution of chemical-free food led him to co-establishing Pegasus Networks, a pre-internet service provider throughout Australia, the Pacific Islands and Southeast Asia. Pegasus Networks, launched in 1989, was about providing the means to share information with some of the most marginalised communities in the region.
Andrew’s articles on radio art, generative music, independent media and internet activism have been published in Journal of New Musique Australia, Fibreculture Reader, RealTime and 21C, At a Distance (MIT Press, 2005), Re-inventing Radio – Aspects of Radio as Art (Revolver, 2008), the annual Global Information Society Watch Report (Hivos, APC, 2010-2018). Andrew also co-authored the landmark Pan Asia Networking Report (International Development and Research Centre, 1994). His first book, Right to Know – India’s internet avant-garde (ISBN 978-81-933164-2-9), is published by the Digital Empowerment Foundation and the Australia India Institute.
His work spans the genres of non-fiction film-making, short-format documentary, non-linear radio documentary drama, projected video and sound installations. Andrew has produced public events on such wide-ranging topics as open licenses, community cultural origins and place-making, and mixed media artworks, Bamiyarra, with asylum seekers focusing on their connections to homeland. His films include The Light Show, a history of psychedelic performance lighting in Melbourne, the unusually topical This Choir Sings Carols and Sarawak Gone – a series of shorts on land rights issues in East Malaysia. This includes TONG TANA, a documentary drama for radio on the cosmology of the last forest dwellers of Sarawak. His first feature Ocean in a Drop – broadband impacts rural India was launched at the Chennai Film Festival in December 2017 and screened on national public television in India in May 2018.
Andrew has a Master of Arts in Interactive Media, is an Adjunct Industry Fellow, Media and Communication, Swinburne University of Technology and an independent member of the Association for Progressive Communications. He works out of his Secession Films post-production studios on the rural outskirts of Melbourne.
Photo by Jimmie James Wright, 2017