Barnard is an artist filmmaker whose work has shown in cinemas, international film festivals and galleries including Tate Modern, Tate Britain and MoMA, New York. Her recent hit, "The Selfish Giant" gained her a multitude of awards, including the British Independent Film Awards (Best Film, Best Director), London Critics Circle Best British Film of the Year, and a BAFTA nomination. The young performers in this film also received several awards for their fantastic performances.
Clio Barnard’s work is concerned with the relationship between fictional film language and documentary. She has often dislocated sound and image by constructing fictional images around verbatim audio. In "The Arbor" actors lip-synch to the voices of real people, questioning documentary’s aspiration to collapse the distance between reality and representation. "The Arbor" was Clio Barnard’s debut feature and one of four projects awarded an Artangel / Jerwood Commission.