The Public Studio is a boutique screen media practice based in Melbourne, Australia. 


Who we are & what drives us.

The co-creative directors of The Public Studio are husband-and-wife filmmaking team, Nicholas Coghlan and Ming-Zhu Hii. 

Our mix of art-heroes is added to on a regular basis, but currently includes John Cage, Alain Resnais, Wim Wenders, Alan Watts, David Lynch, Samuel Beckett, Jean-Luc Godard, Chris Marker, Yoko Ono, Matthew Barney, Eve Sussman, Sophie Calle, Andrei Tarkovsky, Quayola and Bill Viola. 

As well as our obsession with the experimental and avant-garde, we are interested in storytelling that allows a subject to breathe; films and images that give the viewer space for reflection and a deep, visceral point of access to the message being communicated. 


Nick and Ming-Zhu both have extensive backgrounds in visual storytelling. They graduated both in 2002 from NIDA and the VCA School of Drama respectively with Bachelors in Dramatic Art and have gone on to produce numerous works of performing and filmic art, as well as enjoying extensive careers as actors in film, television and theatre.

Nick is also a performance coach for professional actors and corporate clients, and Ming-Zhu is a serial entrepreneur in the design, art and wellness spaces, and a busy voiceover artist. Together the two also created and ran Melbourne's first remote auditioning studio, and in 2010 hosted an intensive, six-week professional and personal development program for artists.

Russell Goldsmith (sound), Joachim Coghlan (performer) and Ming-Zhu Hii (director) on the set of Hey, Wasteland. 

Russell Goldsmith (sound), Joachim Coghlan (performer) and Ming-Zhu Hii (director) on the set of Hey, Wasteland. 


Creative collaborators past and present include: Matthew Angel (graphic designer & art director), Anabelle Lacroix (curator & producer), Frances Haysey (publicist & media management), Damien McLean (lighting designer), Russell Goldsmith (sound designer & composer), Melanie Liertz (set & costume designer), Raya Slavin (sound designer), Glyn Roberts (dramaturg), Melanie Beddie (dramaturg), Veronica Cybulski (producer), Lauren Urquhart (performer & producer), Shalini Li Ling Nair (producer), Klara Kelvy (art department & production assistant), Pier Carthew (performer & photographer), Naomi Wong (set designer), Kitty Green (cinematographer & stills photographer), Jing-Xuan Chan (performer), Terry Yeboah (performer), Georgina Naidu (performer), Fanny Hanusin (performer), Alex Papps (performer), Georgina Capper (performer), Edwina Wren (performer). Special thanks to Lauren Urquhart with whom TPS's original iteration, The Melbourne Town Players was formed in 2009, and to Damien McLean, Russell Goldsmith and Matthew Angel with whom TPS has collaborated regularly since 2009 on a gamut of multifaceted projects.  

Still photographic credits: Nicholas Coghlan, Ming-Zhu Hii, Pier Carthew, Matthew Angel, Bronwyn Pringle, Bernadette Keys, Kitty Green, Naomi Wong.

Graphics & visual branding: Matthew Angel