92pp_text_FINAL:Layout 1 - Melbourne International Animation

92pp_text_FINAL:Layout 1 - Melbourne International Animation
Malcolm Turner
Melbourne International
Animation Festival
Greetings to fans, first-timers and the animatedly curious.
Despite the crazed improbability of it all, MIAF is still here doing its thing. It certainly
suffers from the so-called ‘bumble bee’ syndrome. That is to say, on paper there’s no way
you can prove it will fly. Somehow though, Air MIAF has found a way to bump down the
runway, limp into the air (barely missing the trees) and splutter up into the clouds.
Dunno how we do it, to be honest. It certainly wouldn’t happen without the support of ACMI,
Screen Australia and each and every one of the sponsors. Nor would it happen without the
core crew who give up a great deal of their time and varying slivers of their sanity to make this
thing work.
And it definitely wouldn’t happen without the filmmakers. It surprises alot of people
(including me sometimes) just how many short animated films are being made. We get
over 2,000 entries every year and the vast majority of them are made for the simple reason
that somebody has felt compelled to create them – in much the same way that a painter feels
compelled to paint a picture or a playwright feels compelled to create an imaginary universe,
populated with a fictional tribe who have something on their mind they want to share.
Animation, as a technological achievement, surrounds us and is woven into so many
elements of our daily lives. It is a workhorse technology that is pressed into service by any
number of plump jockeys who vie for our scarce and shattered attentions as we go through
our day. It features in so many of the signs and billboards you would have passed on your
way into this cinema. If you have a better mobile phone than me (and the Australian
Bureau of Statistics suggests that 97.4% of you do) then you probably cop a fair bit of
dodgy animation on a more or less constant basis. If you watch TV, you’ll see it not just in
the ads (some of which is stunning, some of which would burn holes in buckets) but in the
very DNA of the TV experience – at times channels seem incapable of even bringing up the
printed name of the presenter without some sort of dancing squiggle heralding this
profound announcement. Even the mundane pedestrian lights are now being animated.
And, of course, gaming as we know it just simply couldn’t exist without the human ability
to animate. God bless those opposing thumbs. As a species we can be clever buggers when
we set our minds to it.
But all of this describes a menagerie of captive animation. Some of it might be really pretty
and some of it might be able to run fast but it’s owned by an agenda that keeps it on a tight
leash. I like my animation free-range – to be fed on a diet free of toxic motivations and to
breathe air that doesn’t have too much factory dust in it. Sure, it has to scratch around alot
harder to find its nourishment and it risks an early death from living rough in an often chilly
and unsheltered environment but it just tastes better than the stuff that comes from the
feedlot. And although the science isn’t conclusive on this, I reckon it’s better for you as well.
So here’s to the animated 2,000 who fill my mail box every year. Here’s to the crazy fools,
the wild-eyed story tellers, the extroverted mouse jockeys, the introverted locked-in-aroom-by-myselfers, the puppeteers, the painters, the sketchers, the abstract seers and the
message sayers; the magic believers, the alternative reality searchers, the I-just-created-myown-universe mini-gods and the I’m-gonna-show-you-how-it-works demi-gods; the
visionaries, the sanity-challenged and the alternatively sane; the over-caffeinated, the
under-understood, the imagination harvesters and the idea miners; the mild, the wild, the
cool and the crazy … here’s to the artists that created this festival.
Not all of you actually got into the festival but every one of you put your hand up. Selected
or not, your contribution helped build the platform that MIAF stands on – it was a piece of
the puzzle that helped me see the big picture of the animation scene, which I need to bring
this festival together. That counts in my book, and it’s worth a toast.
So …
Audience, please meet your artists.
Artists, here’s your audience.
I hardly did anything, really. My only job is to get you guys together. I’ll leave you on your
own now so you can get to know each other. And I’ll be sure to turn the lights out when I
close the door.
Presenting SIGGRAPH Wrap-Up
Presenting Careers Forum
Presenting Best of the Fest
DIRECTOR Malcolm Turner
CO-DIRECTOR Nag Vladermersky
Malcolm Turner & Nag Vladermersky
STUDENT JURY the students of Charles Sturt
University, Wagga Wagga, NSW
Joanne O’Hara
TRAILER John Lewis
Lin Tobias (La Bella Design)
WEBSITE Helen Gibbins
SPONSORSHIP Zadia Lenders (Go2Girl)
Richard Sowada, Joanne O’Hara, Andre
Bernard & the ACMI Tech Crew, Vivianne
McIllwane and the Front Of House Crew
Andrew Hagan, Justine Wallace, Dan Torre
Carol Beecher, Pam Readford
Terri Dentry (let’s get these films made),
Susan Stamp (you have to make that film Sue),
Hugh Thorn (every year we leave it so late!!),
Liz White (sage advice and a true believer),
John Lewis & Janette Goodey (congrats on the
funding, I want your film at MIAF 2012, consider
it invited), Steph Brotchie, Shirrah Comeadow,
Rosea Capper-Starr, Matt Dravich (pleased to
know you’ve got my back Mattie), Lin Tobias
(you are honorary Posse), John & Scott at
Arena, Michael Walls, Clare Kitson, Marcy
Page, Madeleine Belisle & Danielle Vau at the
NFB, the Il Luster Crew, Nicolas Schmerkin
and the Autour de Minuit team, The Salford
Lads Club (caffeinated inspiration on demand),
Deb Szapiro (keeper of the faith), Anj Malik at
The Departure Lounge, Joe & Richard at The
Shop Cafe (you take make 7am starts worth
the trauma), Michelle Baginski and ...
Andrew Hagan (partner in crime)
Mariusz Frukacz at OFAFA, Agnieszka Piechnik
& Anja Sosic at Platige Image, Zofia Scislowska
& Krzysztof Gierat at Krakow Film Foundation,
Jan Naszewski & Anja Sosic of New Europe
Film Sales, Piotr Kardas & Damian Sasiak at
Se Ma For, Andrzej Bednarek at Film School Lodz
Gary Thomas, Abigail Addison at Animate Projects
Dietmar Schwärzler, Gerald Weber & Maya
McKechneay at Sixpackfilm
The one, the only, JJ Sadelmaier, the
incomparable Signe Baumane, the wonderful
Andy and Caroline London plus the Londonette,
Bill Plympton (thanks for dinner, I’ll buy next
time) Colin Barton, John Canemaker, Jane
Aaron (whose films we HAVE to show one day),
George Griffin (a living legend), David Sheahan,
everybody at the Filmmakers Co-op
RCA 25th
Professor Joan Ashworth, Jane Colling
Tee Bosustow, Rita Belda, Leah Tuttle,
Jim Harwood
Sunday 26
When the lights go up
at the end of the Best Of
The Fest, join us for one
last hoorah at Misty Bar.
You know you want to!
There’ll be time to
ponder (or argue) the
judges’ choices, declare
your faves and imbibe
some colourful drinks ...
with fruit and little
umbrellas stuck in them.
Oh Yeah!
One of the best moments in programming
MIAF is receiving the annual graduation
reel from RCA (Royal College of Art) in
London. They have their grad screenings
in late June and I usually try and pick up
my copy hot off the press when I’m in
London just after each MIAF. As such, it’s
usually one of the very first sets of films
I watch in the programming cycle.
For two or three years, I’d been planning to
put together a program of historical RCA
films to celebrate their 25th anniversary
but one afternoon in a Soho pub, laptop
battery running low, great films pouring
off the 2010 grad reel DVD, I knew the
gods were telling me to complement that
25th Anniversary program with one
devoted exclusively to the class of 2010.
And who am I to deny the gods? I’ve been
pushing my luck with them for years, so,
to cement my fragile grip on the stairway
pointing up, I decided a 2010 RCA film
had to open MIAF this year.
I loved White Hair the first time I saw it.
It has just about everything I look for in
an animated film. It flows beautifully, it
makes extraordinarily creative use of the
unique properties of animation and it
imagines its visual landscape in a way that
can only be delivered by an animated film.
It has a sumptuous elasticity to the way it
leads us through its world. It is a textbook
example of what animation is capable of
and it pulls off this feast of perfection with
a modest, understated aplomb. So, with
the gods appeased, the beer gone and the
laptop battery flat, the opening film for
MIAF had been decided with a mere ten
months to spare.
Another film that was lined up fairly early
on was Evert de Beijer’s Get Real!. I first
saw this at the Fantoche festival in Switzerland. One of de Beijer’s earliest films Hotel
Narcis1 remains one of the stranger films
to ever grace a big screen but, when he
turned to computers, his current, eyeballsaturating style burst forth with the
creation, in 2003, of the visually arresting
Car Craze2. Get Real! takes the insanely
packed, visual cacophony to a whole new,
utterly epic level. What makes it such a
singularly unique addition to our line-up
is the perfection with which it harnesses
gaming culture as a kind of deep-torrent
liquid corridor wildly floating us through
an exploration of the brittle nexus
between ‘real’ reality and the way we all
interact with its virtual counterpart in this
day and age.
In 2008, I saw a stop-motion film called
Luis (again at Fantoche), which just
amazed me. I invited it that night. Alas, try
as I might, I couldn’t connect with the
filmmakers, a trio of Chileans who seemed
to have no fixed abode. The latest film
from two of the filmmakers, The Smaller
Room, turned up on the circuit this year
and the good news is that I’ve had better
luck at nabbing it. The sheer scale of the
work required to create these stop-mo
masterpieces has to be seen to be believed.
Animation can be a paradoxical artform –
some films seem impossibly complex and,
with no strings showing, they leave the
viewer scratching their heads as to their
provenance. At the other end of the scale
are films in which the nitty gritty of the
technique is on full display for all to see –
there are no secrets, no tricks, the DNA of
their creation is obvious. The Smaller Room
is a flag bearer for this latter category, as
were their previous films Luis3 and Lucia4.
“Behold and wonder”, is about all I can
really say.
White Hair
Polish entry Gallery (Robert Proch)5 was
the film that convinced me that my plan to
screen two programs of contemporary
Polish animation had to be revised up to
three. Proch is a one-man art machine.
Animator, successful and prolific exhibited
artist and graffiti writer, Proch loves to
boldly illuminate the grotesque and must
have inhaled some of the ether that Ralph
Steadman has released with his violent
quills. Way too good!
Secret Bee
This year’s ‘How Have I Missed This One
For So Long?’ Award has to go to Gina
Kamentsky6. I dunno – sometimes I guess
I’m in the bathroom when the real gems
hit the screen. Kamentsky originally
entered an older film for MIAF 11 called
House Bunny that I’d seen screen in
Ottawa. Inviting it was a no-brainer until
my erstwhile colleague at the London
International Animation Festival gently
suggested I update my mental database
and consider her latest film, Secret Bee.
Enough said, database updated, Secret Bee
locked in and a freshly minted statuette for
the HHIMTOFSL Award is being polished
for Kamentsky in the hope that I cross
paths with her sometime.
UK, 5’25, 2010
DIRECTOR: Yuka Takeda
PRODUCER: Animation Staff,
Royal College of Art
The sudden discovery of a single white hair
triggers an episode of obsession and denial.
Animation Department Royal College of Art
Kensington Gore, London SW7 2EU UK
Ph: +44 207 590 4512
USA, 2’30, 2010
Venturing toward the sweet honey-spot where
representation and surface push and pull each
other like a two-headed llama.
1 Fitchburg Street B353
Somerville, Massachusetts 02143
Ph: +1 617 623 0629
The Smaller Room
(Der Kleinere Raum)
SWITZERLAND, 2’20, 2009
Cristobal Leon, Nina Wehrle
In a room there is a box. In the box there is a
forest. In the forest there is a lost child. A
place where living beings appear … and vanish.
Reinwardtstraat 79B
Amsterdam 1093 HB
Ph: +31 685 775 604
Gallery (Galeria)
Dry Fish
POLAND, 4’44, 2010
DIRECTOR: Robert Proch
PRODUCER: Hieronim Neumann
The eye of an artist, the hand of a calligrapher
and the imagination of an animator all
combine in this wonderfully imagined study
in perspective-bending, shape-changing,
black and white, moving image
UK, 2’00, 2010
A wondrous cascade of cool creatures, crazy
colours and bewildering scenarios. Two
minutes of pure fun.
BELGIUM, 3’24, 2010
DIRECTORS: Ben Gijsemans, Nicolas
PRODUCER: KASK Hogeschool Gent
The mysteries that emerge when the lights go
dim and a new world takes over
C/- Strange Beast
33-34 Rathbone Place
London W1T 1JN UK
Ph: +44 207 462 0333
Krakow Film Foundation
Basztowa 15/8a, Krakow 31-143 POLAND
Ph: +48 12 294 6945
Karperstraat 6 Gent 9000
Ph: +32 494 751 989
The Undertaker And The Dog
Get Real!
The Origin Of Creatures
JAPAN, 3’54, 2010
One day, an undertaker encounters a lowly
pack of dogs. Without explanation he hands
them his most valuable creation.
HOLLAND, 11’27, 2010
DIRECTOR: Evert de Beijer
PRODUCER: Willem Thyssen
An utterly unique visual experience! A boy,
compelled to score the love of a mega-queen
in a violent computer game, loses his grip on
reality until he tastes a real kiss.
HOLLAND, 11’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Floris Kaayk
PRODUCERS: Marc Thelosen,
Koert Davidse, Yan Ting Yuen
In this dark parable of a post-catastrophic
world, a colony of mutilated limbs emerges in
an ultimately doomed attempt to create a new
form of randomly co-operative beings.
27-2-203 Sugeshiroshita, Kawasaki
Kanagawa 214-0007
Ph: +81 449 445 563
Netherlands Institute for Animation Film
St Josephstraat 135, Tilburg 5017 GG
Ph: +31 135 324 070
Netherlands Institute for Animation Film
St Josephstraat 135, Tilburg 5017 GG
Ph: +31 135 324 070 niaf@niaf.nl
The Twin Girls Of Sunset Street
To Swallow A Toad
SPAIN, 13’00, 2010
Marc Riba, Anna Solanas
Ointments, elixirs and poultices. Enriqueta
and Ramoneta will attend your needs with
discretion and reserve at Sunset St No 17A,
LATVIA, 10’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jurgis Krasons
PRODUCER: Vilnis Kalnaellis
It’s The Rounds vs The Squares. The Squares
can deal with The Rounds cutting their ears
off all the time ’cause they can swallow toads,
but at some point toad addiction looms.
SPAIN, 8’10, 2010
A visit to an Indian mental institution reminds
Ines of the last days she spent with her friend
I + G Stop Motion, C/- Sant Cristofol,
13 baixos, Barcelona 08012 SPAIN
Ph: +34 932 389 234
Rija Films, Meness Str 4
Riga LV-1013 LATVIA
Ph: +37 167 362 656
Avda Sancho el Sabio, 17 Trasera
San Sebastian 20010
Ph: +34 943 115 511
This is a program that showcases the
differences between computer-generated
and ‘hand-made’ imagery. Films don’t get
much more CG than Pixels, which even
draws from elements of digital gaming
culture. It’s such a seductively simple
premise for a film but executed with such a
wealth of detail. It’s a film that couldn’t be
imagined or presented in any other
format than pure CG animation.
Iranian animator Omid Khoshnazar1 has
been making films that depict the individual
and mundane terrors of war since he graduated from Iran’s National TV Academy in
2005. His films are a visceral gut punch to
the notion of individual glory that a
uniform and a gun sometimes dangle like a
poisoned carrot in front of young men on
every side of the contrived, jagged lines
that are drawn in the sands of war. Khoshnazar’s gunmetal greys, his harsh, shiny
surfaces and his prowess as a digital
animator accentuate the grim, enforced
determination and desperation of his
characters. His style, like his subject matter,
is unwavering and going from strength to
strength. In 2005, his first film, Zero
Degree2, depicted a lone soldier trapped
within a wall-less prison created by his
scarred psyche after shooting a handcuffed
prisoner. Two years later, Labyrinth3 finds
a terrified soldier running through a
mirrored maze with a ticking bomb
strapped to him. His latest film, Parasite,
arrives to continue this stream of peeling
back the skins of war to reveal it as a
gruesome theatre of individuals.
Contrast these gigabytal feasts of digitality4
with the distinctly hand-made aesthetic of
films such as Wisdom Teeth (Don
Hertzfeldt), Touch (Ferenc Cako) and
Freud, Fish And Butterfly (Haiyang Wang).
Don Hertzfeldt5 is one of the few true
superstars of the indie animation scene.
His films bring the house down every time
and sit on that ragged mountain pinnacle
from which can be screamed exhortations
on sensational timing, great ideas and
comedic brilliance; all of which can be a far
more powerful way to connect with an
audience than any art school training – but
being Don helps as well. Wisdom Teeth is
not for people who have a pending
dentist’s appointment.
Hungarian Ferenc Cako6 is one of the
most accomplished puppet and sand
animators in the world7. We’ve played a
number of his films over the years but his
latest, Touch, is such a wonderful parcel of
gentle grace that it is surely going to rank
amongst his best. Every frame resonates
with the invisible velvet touch of the
animator’s fingers – a perfect melding of
artist and material.
Late for a screening at the Holland festival,
I came in part way through Freud, Fish And
Butterfly. I had to stumble through the
dark whilst dealing with images of Freud
sitting in a bath beside an army
officer who was festooned in a billowing
ball gown and surrounded by a row of
urinals over which a giant whale was being
deconstructed at ceiling level. I needed to
see and know more and, unsurprisingly,
Haiyang Wang became the impromptu star
of a party at the Il Luster8 office when he
unrolled a small portfolio of stunning
drawings. His work is the kind of stuff that
makes you want to ask “where do you get
your ideas from?”
without giving away its punchline but,
trust me, this one’s a gem.
And it’s always a pleasure to screen the
work of Tom Schroeder9. A genuinely
nice guy, he has worked with a number of
different techniques10 over the years and
his latest film, Bike Race, carries on the
style that his 2002 film, Bike Ride11,
started. Tom is a great storyteller but his
‘secret sauce’ is being able to get to the
simplest and most central core of any
given character – and that’s a lot harder
than it sounds.
1. http://tiny.cc/6mogq
2. http://tiny.cc/7juz5
3. http://tiny.cc/t4t20
4. http://tiny.cc/29s5f
5. www.bitterfilms.com
6. www.ferenccako.com
7. http://tiny.cc/7yn3e
8. www.illuster.nl
9. http://tiny.cc/c2ss2
10. http://tiny.cc/i9ztj
11. http://tiny.cc/p7gew
In A Pig’s Eye
(Wakaranai Buta)
JAPAN, 10’10, 2010
A delicate, surreal connection is made between
a house sheltering all of mankind and a giant pig.
It was at the same party that I locked in
Il Luster’s Little Quentin, a film with a
bubbling stream of small but genius
moments. It’s a tricky film to write about
Ichinotsubo 63 A-1, Nakahara-ku
Kawasaki 211-0016
Ph: +81 909 117 2496
Freud, Fish And Butterfly
CHINA, 3’27, 2010
Associations and transformations in a private
world of untethered imagination. Possibly a
psychological adventure; certainly an amazing
FRANCE, 2’35, 2010
DIRECTOR: Patrick Jean
PRODUCER: One More Production
A cacophonous army of 8-bit characters
overrun the city of New York like a swarm of
marauders from the hard-drive of hell.
CANADA, 4’18, 2010
DIRECTOR: Marie Bloch-Laine
PRODUCER: Mel Hoppenheim School of
Cinema, Concordia University
A man confronts a fluid version of himself as
a result of a very strange drinking experience.
A1-10, 22 Courtyard Street Art Village
32 Baiziwan Road, Chaoyang District,
Beijing 100022 CHINA
Ph: +86 135 2080 7809
Autour de Minuit
21 rue Henry Monnier
Paris 75009
Ph: +33 1 4281 1728
5431 rue Waverly
Montreal, Quebec H2T 2X8
Ph: +1 514 691 8401
The Keeper
(Der Sammler)
GERMANY, 4’23, 2010
DIRECTOR: Katharina Huber
PRODUCER: Academy of Media Arts
A street magician opens a stretching, swaying,
ever-morphing Pandora’s Box for his willing
but wary audience.
Bike Race
USA, 12’15, 2010
A curious love triangle emerges in the midst
of a ‘friendly’ bike race, staged to determine
the best racer of all time.
FRANCE, 4’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Nicolas Lemee
PRODUCER: La Poudriere
Laszlo is a man with no past, who just wants
to live in peace – anywhere will do!
541 Otis Ave
St Paul, Minnesota 55104
Ph: +1 651 917 3228
Robert Str 13
Koln 51105
The Crossing
(La Traversée)
Little Quentin
CANADA, 4’00, 2010
There’s a little magic in the air. A boy and a
rabbit embark on a night voyage.
6912 St Vallier
Montreal, Quebec H2S 2P9
Ph: +1 514 357 5792
HOLLAND, 9’35, 2010
DIRECTORS: Albert ’t Hooft, Paco Vink
PRODUCERS: Arnoud Rijken,
Michiel J. Snijders
My Little Pony meets Charles Manson in this
tale of murder and intrigue from (just) beyond
the sandpit.
HUNGARY, 6’00, 2010
An unconventional biographic exploration of
the filmmaker’s father.
Magyar Filmunio
Varosligeti fasor 38
Budapest 1068
Ph: +36 1 351 7760
Anikey Studios
Binckhorstlaan 36, The Hague 2516 BE
Ph: +31 624 557 461
Wisdom Teeth
USA, 5’00, 2010
Mr Hertzfeldt’s excruciatingly funny
extrapolation on dental extraction.
IRAN, 8’34, 2009
DIRECTOR: Omid Khoshnazar
PRODUCERS: Masoud Safavi, Jochen
Ehmann, Omid Khoshnazar
The latest film from Omid Khoshnazar, who
is perhaps the best animator at depicting war’s
sudden excitements, stifling boredoms and
random winners and losers.
La Poudriere
La Catoucherie, rue de Chony
Bourg les, Valence 26500
Phone: +33 4 7582 0808
RPCA Pictures
Hoze Honari, No 5, 2nd St, Fatemi Ave
Tehran 1415794767 IRAN
Ph: +98 21 8895 2059
SWITZERLAND, 4’09, 2010
DIRECTORS: Claudius Gentinetta,
Frank Braun
PRODUCER: Claudius Gentinetta
Sleep. Full-breath ahead into the final sleep.
A lullaby for a silent decline.
Gentinetta Film
Hermetschloo Str 70, Zurich 8048
Ph: +41 442 714 455
Bill Plympton1. The name is synonymous
with indie animation. His 2004 film, Guard
Dog2, was a gasser and was packed to the
gunwales with truly classic Plymptonian
flourishes. An insanely enthusiastic,
murderously protective little bulldog saw a
threat to his master at every turn and would
launch himself into a feverish frenzy at the
mere sight of a jujitsu-threatening insect or
an evil school-girl wielding a razor-sharp
skipping rope. Fast forward to 2010 and,
with the idea of pulling together a global
animation jam-session, Bill invited artists to
re-animate sections of this film. Guard Dog
Global Jam is the result. It’s the same film,
same great gags, same ultimate end but it’s
a Macy’s Parade of styles and techniques
emailed in from every corner of the globe
by about 70 animators all keen to squeeze
in their allocation of frames.
Polish animation. We’ve been big fans for
a long time3. And the fascination is set to
continue for a while yet. This year, we have
a study of contemporary Polish animation
and, next year, we will be screening retrospectives of three of Poland’s most important
studios. In Warsaw, Platige Image 4 is
showing the world just how far computer
animation can be pushed. They have
produced such gems as Fallen Art5, one of
our all time favourite films here at MIAF
HQ; the Academy Award-nominated
Cathedral6; and the truly epic Ark7. Their
stories are big, their images are big, their
films scream to be shown on a big screen –
the bigger the better. Paths Of Hate is no
different and luckily we have one of the
biggest screens around. It’s almost too
much to take in all at once. Whether it is
fighter planes careening through the three
dimensional space of an aerial battlefield
or the bone-crunching action of hand-tohand combat in a vast snow-coated killing
zone, this is the kind of film that never lets
up for a moment and in which Platige
Image excels. We’ll be seeing ALOT of
Platige Image in the next couple of MIAFs
and Paths Of Hate is a 101 on the magnificence they are capable of.
Izabela Plucinska8 has made several of her
films under the auspices of a variety of
Polish institutions. She is a master of stopmotion animation and we have shown a
number of her films in recent years, including
the richly crafted Esterhazy9 last year.
Josette Und Ihr Papa is just such a gorgeous
showcase for how wonderful this technique
can be. There is something about the
textures, the colours and the sense of weight
in plasticine that connect with the child
inside of us. The best plasticine animators
are able to retain and even speak to this
inner sense of uncompromised wonder
even as they apply the technical expertise of
a master sculptor to their medium. Plucinska
is getting better and better at capturing and
harnessing these qualities and this film
offers us an enticing picnic basket packed
with magically whimsical moments. These
are all magnified by her growing confidence
with bending perspectives which, like her
chosen medium, creates a wonder that
simultaneously takes us back to the inner
child’s simple fascinations and connects
with the cultured adults awe at experiencing
the product of a master artist.
I keep bumping into Michal and Uri
Kranot10 at festivals but never really get a
chance to sit down and chat. Gonna change
that one day but in the meantime I’ve at
least managed to secure their latest film,
White Tape. This is a bit of a departure
from their last couple of films, God On
Our Side11 and The Heart Of Amos Klein12,
at least stylistically, but it carries on their
contribution to the debate that swirls
around the Israel–Palestine conflict.
I’ve seen the Kranot’s speak on a number
of panels and they claim an unease with
being labelled ‘political’, which is fair
enough. White Tape though is a short,
sharp slap to the senses reminding us
that power can be as conceptual as much
as it can be overtly violent: it can be
administered with one dollar’s worth of
white tape as effectively as with a government
treasury’s worth of weapons. Political
statements – like artistic ones – are defined
to a certain degree by the people who
make them but the people who receive
them have a say as well. One of MIAF’s
guests in 2006 was brought to tears by
God On Our Side, and yet, I’ve seen the
same film evoke anger and derision.
Political? Don’t know. What I do know is
that the Kranot’s make films that provoke
thought, stimulate discussion and
challenge interpretation and that’s worth
turning up for.
1. www.plymptoons.com
2. http://tiny.cc/z22lm
3. http://tiny.cc/ikb0e
4. www.platige.com
5. http://tiny.cc/wzrop
6. http://tiny.cc/ynclk
7. http://tiny.cc/rjgby
8. http://tiny.cc/8222q
9. http://tiny.cc/2tv0l
10. http://tiny.cc/3totu
11. http://tiny.cc/z2dyh
12. http://tiny.cc/jydu0
Big Bang Big Boom
White Tape
The Renter
ITALY, 9’55, 2010
Blu just keeps getting better and better! An
unscientific point of view on the beginning and
evolution of life ... and how it probably ends.
DENMARK, 2’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Michal Kranot, Uri Kranot
PRODUCER: Timothy Leborgne
White Tape explores the theme of boundaries:
the frame, the space between brushstrokes
and the implications of occupation.
USA, 9’52, 2011
Jason Carpenter
Based on a true story. A young boy in an
elderly woman’s care finds himself more and
more adrift as her surly tenant makes his
presence felt.
Tindrum Animation
The Open Workshop
5 Kasernevej, Viborg 8800
Ph: +45 2717 9597
Enter The Lovely
Business As Usual
Horse Glue
UK, 2’53, 2010
Deeply affected by the deprivation of his
urban habitat, an artist seeks a form of escape
by imposing his own identity on to the
deteriorating walls.
CANADA, 4’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Kevin D.A. Kurytnik,
Carol Beecher
PRODUCER: Carol Beecher
An animated calaveras (google it) to the people
of Earth. A darkly comic look at life in the city
in the year 2110.
UK, 6’55, 2010
When two films, Horse (a miniature war film)
and Glue (a tale of a child alone in the woods),
unfold together within the same space, their
narratives become intertwined.
43 St Vincent Crescent
Glasgow G3 8NG
Ph: +44 794 370 3604
Fast Forward Little Red
Riding Hood
HOLLAND, 1’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sjaak Rood
Put it in, punch the FF button. Little Red
Riding Hood – the whole story in one minute,
30 seconds. Hey Granny!
Netherlands Institute for Animation Film
St Josephstraat 135, Tilburg 5017 GG
Ph: +31 135 324 070
51 Hargrave Mansions
London N19 5SR
Ph: +44 776 673 2521
6716 22 Avenue NE
Calgary, Alberta TIY 1P4
Ph: +403 541 1527
Vie D’Enfer
Guard Dog Global Jam
FRANCE, 6’55, 2010
DIRECTORS: Romain Carlier, Sebastien
Druilhe, Thomas Eid, Vincent Husset
PRODUCER: Supinfocom
The heavens crack open when these angels
meet their devil.
USA, 5’41, 2011
Bill Plympton’s classic Guard Dog re-animated
by a small battalion of online contributors.
A vast array of techniques and styles but a
‘Plymptoon’ down to the core.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Josette Und Ihr Papa
Paths Of Hate
GERMANY, 8’17, 2010
DIRECTOR: Izabela Plucinska
PRODUCERS: Robert Kern, Izabela Plucinska
A gorgeously crafted film based on a Eugene
Ionesco children’s book about a playful girl
and her father who eat odd things while Mum
is in the country.
POLAND, 10’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Damian Nenow
PRODUCER: Marcin Kobylecki
A simply astounding testament to the madness
of war and the unhuman lengths to which
some warriors go to fight on long after any
meaning has taken flight.
CZECH REPUBLIC, 10’00, 2010
Sliceman – the central character in a dark and
frightening land locked into, and consumed
by, a murder chain.
Gabriel-Max.str13, Berlin 0245 GERMANY
Ph: +49 163 175 7239
Platige Image
Raclawicka 99, Warsaw 02-634
Phone: +48 22 844 6474
Autour de Minuit
21 rue Henry Monnier
Paris 75009
Phone: +33 1 4281 1728
Four years to make a film!! It happens. One
of my annual pilgrimages is to the spacechallenged office of Autour de Minuit in
Paris. (They’re just around the corner from
the world-famous Folies Bergère.) From
this tiny space emerges a vast universe of
animation that seems impossible to be
contained within such confines. Master
alchemist Nicolas Schmerkin oversees this
softly bubbling cauldron and tries to direct
the forces under his command to where
they might do the greatest good. He
produced last year’s Academy Awardwinner, Logorama1, and he is currently
grappling with the monstrously genius
energy that will erupt from Rosto’s next
film, The Monster Of Nix2. But I digress.
Every year, my tentative knock on the
window usually hides an impossible-tocontain excitement about the rich harvest
of animated wonder that I am about to
receive. Recently minted films are, of
course, the Holy Grail but works in
progress are the sort of insider, secret society
type stuff that festival directors love and for
years now I’ve been watching the gradual
progress of a film by NoBrain3. Four or
more years in the making, it eventually
emerged under the title The Gloaming and
it has definitely been worth the wait. I toyed
with making it MIAF’s opening film this
year but I’d already promised that spot. It is
spectacular though – a kind of Gulliver’s
Travels meets Mini-Ben Hur Of The Future.
Where would we be without Supinfocom4?
Every year our program fills up with their
films and every year our box marked ‘not
selected’ always contains a few Supinfocom
films that hang around our necks as regrets.
Last year, they had no graduation reel
because they changed from a four-year to
a five-year course structure. That’s alotta
learning! And the results show. This year,
we have a whole program of these films
that have undergone the cinq ans gestation
and that, of course, gives us a chance to
ensure the regrets box is a bit emptier. So,
we’ve squeezed a couple of extra Supinfocom
films into open competition – including
the politically incorrect Chernokids. It’s
either incredibly topical or of fairly questionable taste, depending on how you view
these things. For what it might be worth, it
was programmed long before the tragedy
in Fukushima, although I did have a vague
sense that the Chernobyl ‘anniversary’ was
approaching at the time. Mostly I loved the
filmmakers willingness to rapidly switch
visual styles mid-story and the juicy Lord Of
The Flies vibe, which I think is a bottomlessly intriguing pool of filmic inspiration.
The vast majority of films that make it into
MIAF either get there through having been
seen on a big screen at one or more festivals
overseas or through a repetitive – sometimes
exciting, sometimes draining – process of
viewing submitted DVDs. Watching a DVD
on even a big TV screen isn’t, and can never
be, a substitute for watching a cinema
screening – anybody who thinks it is just
doesn’t get it. But it’s sometimes all there is
on hand. DVDs fail routinely and these are
generally consigned to the bin. So, when a
DVD of Battenberg turned up out of the
blue, I duly slid it into the tray and pushed
play. Showstopper. A great big little film.
Immense detail, brilliant use of depth of
field, a set to die for and a truly amazing
use of stop-motion animals (which can be
bloody hard to do with all that fur and all
those feathers). Instant contender and I’d
made the decision to invite it about 30
seconds before … the damn DVD failed.
Right on programming deadline. Ugly
decision time for the fat controller. Invite
a film I hadn’t seen all the way through or
bin a film that I knew was terrific. No guts,
no glory, I s’pose. Fair to say, I’ll be as
interested as you to see how it turns out –
maybe even more so. Probably won’t do
that again though.
Over the years, Malcolm Sutherland5 has
made variously themed films – one based
on intricate sketches of birds (Birdcalls,
2004)6; a film infused with the UPA style,
which utilised a lovely ‘old timey’ musical
track (Great Ambition, 2008)7; a literally
searing classic NFB-styled indictment on
the idiocy of tourists (The Tourists, 2007)8;
and a colourfully crafted exploration of the
food-chain in space (The Astronomer’s
Dream, 2009)9. Umbra takes a fanciful look
at our relationship with shadows and it is
utterly charming. In person, Sutherland is a
very laid back character and somehow he is
able to turn out these diverse short films –
long may it be so.
Mushroom Thief
UK, 7’00, 2010
Swimming through a meadow collecting
mushrooms, a girl meets her wildness in the
form of a hare.
Animation Department
Royal College of Art
Kensington Gore, London SW7 2EU
Ph: +44 207 590 4512
FRANCE, 6’54, 2010
DIRECTORS: Matthieu Bernadat, Nils
Boussuge, Florence Ciuccoli, Clement
Deltour, Marion Petegnief
PRODUCER: Supinfocom
20 years on and not all is right with the kids
who were caught up in the aftermath of
Chernobyl. A few too many eyes, for a start.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
SWITZERLAND, 6’15, 2010
DIRECTOR: Philip Hofmanner
PRODUCERS: Gerd Gockell, Jochen
Ehmann, Otto Alder, Jurgen Haas
A man and a woman find each other, and yet
they are destined to drift apart as the cogs and
wheels of time keep running relentlessly.
Trixer Hofmanner & Fielitz
Raffelstrasse 30, Zurich 8045
Ph: +41 445 8685
Escape His Stare
(M’echapper De Son Regard)
Drop Out
FRANCE, 3’40, 2010
PRODUCER: La Poudriere
Beware the chicken! One day, Mr Wang
notices a rooster in the marketplace that keeps
staring at him …
AUSTRIA, 3’00, 2009
DIRECTOR: Rafael Mayrhofer
PRODUCER: University of Applied Sciences
In a world dominated by re-awakened
surveillance cameras, a baby doll struggles
with its destiny.
La Poudriere
La Catoucherie, rue de Chony
Bourg les, Valence 26500 FRANCE
Ph: +33 4 7582 0808
Damaschkestr 15
Linz 4040
Ph: +43 650 390 1150
Un Petit Bol D’Air
FRANCE, 2’06, 2010
DIRECTOR: Isabelle Catalan
PRODUCER: Ecole Emile Cohl
Waaay up in the air on wobbly sticks, the
view changes, the air clears and the universe
is different.
Ecole Emile Cohl
232 rue Paul Bert
Lyon 69003
UK, 12’15, 2010
DIRECTOR: Stewart Comrie
PRODUCER: Anna Odell
Hidden behind a dusty window, a strange
dual universe awaits the accidental visitor.
A shadowy presence resides with ambiguous
motives ready to lure us into its rooms of
FINLAND, 4’21, 2010
A young girl receives an unusual bicycle for
her birthday – a device designed not for
transport but as a torture machine to force
humans in to labour.
CANADA, 5’34, 2010
Malcolm Sutherland
An explorer ventures into an unknown world,
yet it seems that he has been there before.
1617 Leclaire
Montreal, Quebec HIV 2Z5
Ph: +1 514 254 5489
Ph: +358 445 019 770
Ph: +44 773 184 4498
Sunday (Dimanche)
The Gloaming
ESTONIA, 5’40, 2009
DIRECTOR: Kristjan Holm
PRODUCER: Ulo Pikkov
Co-existential boundaries. In an uncertain
world, hazy lines can only be crossed with
great courage and unlimited imagination.
CANADA, 9’50, 2011
DIRECTOR: Patrick Doyon
PRODUCERS: Marc Bertrand, Michael
It’s a Sunday like any other, except the factory
is closing down. A fable that shows us how
important it is to see life through a child’s eyes.
FRANCE, 14’00, 2010
PRODUCER: Nicolas Schmerkin
Civilisation and its accelerating evolution give
rise to a character capable of creating a world
beyond its control.
Heina 21a-9
Tallinn 10319
Ph: +372 553 5365
National Film Board of Canada
Postal Box 6100, Centre-ville Station
Montreal, Quebec H3C 3H5 CANADA
Ph: +1 514 283 9000
Autour de Minuit
21 rue Henry Monnier
Paris 75009
Phone: +33 1 4281 1728
Love & Theft, by Andreas Hykade, has to
have been, pretty much, the most popular
film on the international festival circuit
over the last twelve months. It arrived just a
week too late to get into MIAF last year,
which was a great shame, but even before
MIAF 2010 closed I knew we’d be showing
it this year. It’s a real eye-popper and a
tremendous amount of fun to watch. His
1995 student film, We Lived In Grass, is an
extraordinary first film; Ring Of Fire1,
made in 2000 when he was just 22 years of
age, is one of MIAF’s all time favourite
films; and he is probably best known for
Runt2. Generally, Hykade is a very assured
artist and tends to have a pretty good idea
of what he wants to create before he starts –
this was certainly the case with Ring Of
Fire. But Love & Theft started out more as
play; a desire to take some of animation’s
most recognisable icons, make them move
and turn the ‘morph it’ dial to 11.
Ruth Lingford has been animating for a
good long while now and has made some
of the more important and enduring films
in contemporary animation. Death And
The Mother3, Pleasures Of War4, What She
Wants5 and The Old Fools6 consistently turn
up on lists of the most important short
animated films ever made. They explore the
complex spider web of human emotions
and motivations that drive some of the
most fundamental human actions.
Narratively, they challenge, confront and
force questions through very tight nozzles
but visually they are sublime, often soft on
the eyes and wonderfully crafted artworks.
In person, her conversations seldom casually
encompass the subjects her films clamp on
to and she doesn’t give the impression that
her films necessarily give voice to heavyweight personal obsessions. Her latest film,
Little Deaths, keeps voyaging on this
trajectory. It will probably be one of the
more divisive films in the festival. Prior to
MIAF, I’ve seen it screened three times:
once it was all but booed, another audience
laughed (somewhat nervously I thought)
and the third audience applauded it
fulsomely and it was the only film people
were talking about outside. At different
times, I decided to screen it, not to screen,
worried that I was only programming it
because it was Ruth Lingford’s latest film,
was thrilled to be able to present Ruth
Lingford’s latest film, and so on. I do think
that MIAF has some sort of duty to routinely
screen works by important filmmakers but,
odd as it may sound, it was the audience
that booed it that got it over the line and
into competition. I remember that screening
vividly and, although they shall remain
nameless, I just reckon they got it wrong.
stuff). The simple pleasure of creating a
joyous, boisterous choreography of shapes
and playing with every colour in the
palette just explodes off the screen. His
films just look like they were created by
somebody having a hell of alot of fun
BUT are also the product of somebody
totally in control of their gig – like a stunt
pilot, the best busker you ever saw in your
life or a great big dog who is certain he has
nailed that damn stick. With nobody to
restrain me the day his latest DVD arrived,
I put three of his films into MIAF including
Tatamp, which is the film I’d make if I
could make films. He can be bloody hard
to reach via email but he’s one of the filmmakers I have in mind as a future guest.
1. http://tiny.cc/1tlln
2. http://tiny.cc/ccq1n
See also http://tiny.cc/udp8h
3. http://tiny.cc/ejbux
4. http://tiny.cc/22ujl
5. http://tiny.cc/h39i2
6. http://tiny.cc/7xka7
7. http://tiny.cc/hf2w3
I just love the films of Mirai Mizue7. I’m
pretty sure they’re not profound answers
to life’s biggest problems or deep and
meaningful explorations of the farthest
reaches of the human psyche – although
I’m open to persuasion. What they are
though is ‘fun’. F-U-N. Google it, it’s a real
word (although, in truth, googling the
word fun throws up some pretty interesting
Hot Car And Crazy Coyote
Miss Daisy Cutter
BELGIUM, 5’13, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jerome Cauwe
A lethal but very stylish combo. A sharp
dressin’ burglar takes the top down and drives
off into the desert. Thank the Spirits the coyote
has some spare shades.
FRANCE, 5’40, 2010
A crash-or-crash-through, breakneck gallop
through a parade of re-imagined cultural icons.
JAPAN, 5’38, 2011
This living thing has one sound but a
thousand forms.
Ecole Nationale Superiure des Arts Visuels
La Cambre, 27 Avenue Fr Roosevelt
Brussels 1050 BELGIUM
Ph: +32 171 725 205
2E Anjeliersdwarsstraat 14A
Amsterdam 1015 NT
Ph: +31 624 607 155
11-3-A102 Sasame 1
Toda-shi, Saitama 335-0034
Ph: +81 80 3096 6985
Das Tub
NEW ZEALAND, 4’05, 2010
DIRECTOR: James Cunningham
PRODUCERS: James Cunningham,
Oliver Hilbert, Leon Woud
Lost in the murky depths of a strange ocean,
a German U-boat crew find themselves on a
collision course with objects stranger than
they can fathom.
The Nocturnals
(Les Nocturnes)
CANADA, 1’50, 2010
A fragment of life at night. Wild, feathered
and furred creatures create their own poetry
with their movements and their voices.
7007 St Andre
Montreal, Quebec H2S 2L3
Ph: +1 514 707 9771
Level 16, 92 Albert St
Ph: +64 9303 0402
Rendezvous With A Dead
GERMANY, 2’27, 2008
DIRECTOR: Pauline Flory
A sensuous re-uniting in black and white.
USA, 8’33, 2010
An exquisitely crafted gentle interrogation of
the human heart using abstract metaphors
and symbols.
Hoeningerweg 218a
Cologne 50969
Ph: +49 173 527 3227
Little Deaths
USA/UK, 11’00, 2010
An animated reflection on the experience of
orgasm, based on a varied series of taped
C/- Jane Colling Distribution
24 Banyard Road
London SE16 2YA
Ph: +44 207 231 1106
The Briefcase Man
(L’Homme A La Valise)
FRANCE, 5’23, 2010
A man, a briefcase, a horizon, and a shaky
pathway high above the ground.
3215 Overland Ave 9172
Los Angeles, California 90034
Ph: +1 213 271 7078
921 rue de la Croix de Lavit
Montpellier 34090 FRANCE
Ph: +4 9977 0142
The Trembling Veil Of Bones
Love & Theft
CANADA, 12’42, 2010
DIRECTOR: Matthew Talbot-Kelly
PRODUCERS: Nicky Gogan, Martin Rose
Bones, a lone clockmaker, sits inside a
darkened studio filled with the sounds of
ticking clocks.
BELGIUM, 9’35, 2010
DIRECTOR: Evelyn Verschoore
PRODUCER: Barend Weyens
A solitary saxophonist makes one or two
hearts beat a little faster when he goes to his
window and plays to the audience of one
across the street.
GERMANY, 6’49, 2010
DIRECTOR: Andreas Hykade
PRODUCER: Thomas Meyer-Hermann
A beautifully crafted piece of over-caffeinated,
morphing, animated madness.
National Film Board of Canada
Postal Box 6100, Centre-ville Station
Montreal, Quebec H3C 3H5 CANADA
Phone: +1 514 283 9000
Cinnamon Entertainment
Lucas Munichstraat 10
Gent 9000 BELGIUM
Ph: +32 476 676 725
Studio Film Bilder
Ostendstrasse 106
Stuttgart D-70188
Ph: +49 711 481 027
Ahhh, abstract animation. How we love
thee! This program exercises me more
than probably just about any other. Just
defining the term abstract can be the
kind of gloriously wobbly rabbit holes
that curators and judges can accidentally
stumble through or wilfully dive into
boots and all.
“Oh, you mean non-narrative?”, one
colleague muttered over a drink at one or
another festival. As I recall this simple
one-liner, I’m not even sure if the quote
should or should not include the question
mark. So, yeah, OK, ‘non-narrative’ but
somewhere between 50% and damn near
100% of the films in competition, in any
given year, might tick that box.
Experimental seems like a reasonable
stepping off point if I do wind up getting
dragged into a conversation on this topic.
But even that phrase raises some hackles.
Films that have no recognisable visual
component? Yeah, maybe, but it’s a guideline I ditch without qualm over and over.
Graduates – in the real and metaphorical
sense, of various schools and movements
– all have conflicting and overlapping
definitions. And then there are the days
when the need to ‘define’ or conform to
the rules of this movement or that
aesthetic either amuse or anger its loyal
advocates and in turn render the process,
in equal parts, a spiky platform for frustration and an engine room for low-octane
anger. This paragraph alone (which probably
should have been deleted at the draft stage)
survives simply as a litmus test for how
wound up this discussion can make people.
In truth, a very significant element of how
a film gets considered – and ultimately
selected – for this program has a lot to do
with how it winds up sitting against all of
the other films that were entered in any
given year. Sifting through 2,000+ films
tends to give one an impression of the full
gamut, ranging from pure ‘beginningmiddle-end’ narrative films all the way
along the scale to the 47-minute opus
featuring nothing but a blurred red glob
moving slowly from one side of the
screen to the other. This total impression
is actually one of the most powerful tools
I use to define where the abstract arrow
sits on the scale in any given year.
There are three Australian films in the
Abstract Showcase this year. Pretty happy
about that. All going well, the program
will open with Paul Fletcher’s1 Time
Ripples In Sense World. In many ways,
Paul is the quintessential multi-media
filmmaker. He works fast and his films
often capture the raw energy of an artist
not obsessed with dotting every ‘i’. Instead,
they create their own inner logic. There
aren’t always that many clues to help those
in the audience who want to decode these
twisting creatures ... so don’t try, is my
advice, just absorb the visual statement. I
still owe Paul $200 for a really great satellite
gig he organised at MIAF last year – this
seems like a suitable public platform to
apologise for this tardiness.
Benjamin Ducroz2 makes geometry cool.
I just can’t imagine anybody not being
impressed by his work. His film Press +
epitomises that. It’s fascinating to watch and
it’s not nearly as digital as a lot of people
might think. In fact, all or most of the
colourful effects that give this film its
distinctive look are pretty much hand-done
with inks or paints and the whole film is
shot from print outs on paper – one frame
at a time.
The third Australian film is Susurrus by
Lindsay Cox3. We screened his film S-Crash4
a few years ago and he’s a loyal patron of
MIAF year in, year out. Susurrus is just
simply beautiful in every sense of the word.
Subtle, almost sensuous, and sound-track
driven, it absolutely defines what I personally think abstract animation is capable of
achieving. World class.
Another highlight has to be Steven
Woloshen’s5 latest film, Fiesta Brava. Steven
was our special guest last year, hosting a
workshop and even creating our 2010
trailer6. He’s one of the sweetest guys in
the biz and he never stops animating. It’s
amazing to see him pull out his little
‘scratch’ rig whenever he has a few minutes
up his sleeve. Fiesta Brava was so good that
I happily agreed to going halves with him
in striking a new print just for us – and
then a funding cashflow glitch means that
I still owe him $250! A pattern seems to be
emerging here.
An event that had a pretty significant impact
on this year’s Abstract Showcase was the
‘Eleven In Motion’7 project organised by
the Toronto Animated Image Society.
Eleven contemporary animators were
matched with an artist from Canada’s
mid-twentieth century Painters Eleven
movement. In the end, we could have
probably happily shown all eleven of the
resulting films but settled on Strips, by
Felix Dufour-Laperriere8, As Above, So
Below, by Elise Simard, and The Yarwood
Trail, by Richard Reeves9. We’ve shown
earlier films from each of these animators
and finding them all appearing on a single
project like ‘Eleven In Motion’ alongside
people like Steven Woloshen, Rick Raxlen
and Nick Fox-Gieg was one of the big
animation treats of 2010.
Probably one of the biggest surprises in
programming this MIAF was to see an
abstract film by none other than Marv
Newland. Marv animated the classic Bambi
Meets Godzilla10, pioneered the ‘animation
jam’ concept in Anijam11 and was the
founder of the renowned and revered
studio International Rocketship12.
International Rocketship produced an
awe-inspiring roll-call of classic Canadian
animated shorts and provided a home for
some pretty funky Canadian animators,
most notably Danny Antonucci13, who in
turn used that crazed haven to produce the
equally crazed, equally classic Lupo The
Butcher14. In recent years, Marv’s films that
have shown in MIAF include Tete A Tete A
Tete15, which he made at the National Film
Board of Canada, and Postalolio16, which
he made for Frederator Studio. He’s the
friendliest face in any festival crowd and I
have incredibly fond memories of driving
around Vancouver in his VW combi and
having him turn over his studio to me
when I was there researching a program on
‘West Coast’ animation (that I still haven’t
put together). At least I’m pretty sure I
don’t owe him money! His latest film,
CMYK, is, however, an amazing departure
in style. I don’t really know why I was so
surprised to see Marv make an abstract
film. Much of what makes a successful
abstract film is in the timing – the visual
and aural rhythms of the work; a sophisticated understanding of colour and shape;
the ability to create a unique visual choreography for whatever visual elements fill
every frame – and Marv has been a master
of all of those things all his working life so
perhaps an abstract film isn’t such a big
departure after all. Actually, I wonder if he
thinks of it as an abstract film?
1. http://tiny.cc/89as2
2. www.ducroz.com
3. http://tiny.cc/g2pia
4. http://tiny.cc/1jofq
5. http://tiny.cc/tjmcn
6. http://tiny.cc/nnblh
7. http://tiny.cc/ryuew
8. http://tiny.cc/cw9l7
9. http://tiny.cc/j9xwb
10. http://tiny.cc/soybx
11. http://tiny.cc/4hjjd
12. http://tiny.cc/1gez8
13. http://tiny.cc/ts26y
14. http://tiny.cc/t31yf
15. http://tiny.cc/o1pb2
16. http://tiny.cc/98ih8
Time Ripples In Sense World
Music Box
Press +
AUSTRALIA, 7’00, 2011
Sense implies its opposite. You are here. Enjoy
the spectacle before the inevitable farewells
and the next departure.
USA, 3’44, 2010
A unique, physical exploration of tactile,
visual and aural space using imprints and
impressions of all manner of cogs, wheels and
other industrial minutiae.
AUSTRALIA, 1’30, 2009
A constantly evolving network of forms and
shapes eternally locked into a rolling chain of
little ‘Big Bangs’.
P.O.Box 128
Lockwood South, Victoria 3551
Ph: +61 5435 3980
67 George St
Fitzroy, Victoria 3065
Ph: +61 432 989 328
18 Second St
Concord, NH 03301
Machination 84
AUSTRIA, 5’43, 2010
If Viking Eggeling had been able to re-do
Symphonie Diagonale in high definition and
16:9 format 85 years after it premiered, the
result might have looked something like this.
AUSTRALIA, 4’04, 2010
Rolling colours and sounds are pushed
together in a stop-motion animation
exploring the possibilities of a rotating two
dimensional set.
AUSTRIA, 5’00, 2008
“Dextro’s compositional frameworks are
seldom equalled. Once unravelled, they
operate with elegant simplicity and offer the
key to unlocking a truly limitless set of
possibilities.” (www.turux.org)
Neubaugasse 45/13
Vienna A-1071
Ph: +43 152 609 900
130A Nicholson St
Brunswick East, Victoria 3057
Ph: +61 416 386 269
Postfach 59
Baden 2500
Ancient Alien Circus
Seattle Solstice
CANADA, 1’42, 2010
An absorbing, always changing deconstructive
ride through the cumulative building blocks
of an urban environment.
CANADA, 4’00, 2010
Malcolm Sutherland
A deceptively simple floaty universe of
revolving planetoids and waltzing amoebae.
USA, 2’40, 2008
An optical print of hand-made 16mm filmframes using a collection of flora to map the
Seattle landscape as the year passes.
13510 90th Ave NE
Kirkland, Washington 98034
Ph: +1 425 605 0595
1617 Leclaire
Montreal, Quebec HIV 2Z5
Ph: +1 514 254 5489
147 West 93rd Street, Apt 3
New York, New York 10025
Ph: +1 212 579 1296
As Above, So Below
JAPAN, 4’45, 2009
Geometry never looked so good. A visual
cacophony of intersections and foreverlengthening perspectives.
CANADA, 5’40, 2009
Felix Dufour-Laperriere
A masculine noun and a shortened form of
striptease. From ‘strip’: to remove, to take
away; and ‘tease’: to entice, to tempt.
And then all this in plural.
CANADA, 1’44, 2009
A colourful homage to pioneering Canadian
artist Alexandra Luke, one of the founders of
the early 1950s Painters Eleven movement.
11-3-A102 Sasame 1
Toda-shi, Saitama 335-0034
Ph: +81 80 3096 6985
6912 St Vallier
Montreal, Quebec H2S 2P9
Ph: +1 514 357 5792
2218 Darling
Montreal, Quebec H1W 2W8
Ph: +1 514 521 6623
An Abstract Day
The Yarwood Trail
HOLLAND, 5’36, 2010
Oerd van Cuijlenborg
An abstract visual story told in sound. We
witness a day in the life of a couple, who fight,
make love and escape the hot and crowded city.
CANADA, 3’58, 2009
DIRECTOR: Richard Reeves
PRODUCER: Toronto Animated Image
A richly coloured, direct-to-film immersion
of texture, light and shapes.
CANADA, 7’13, 2011
DIRECTOR: Marv Newland
PRODUCER: Martin Rose
A sudden change of style for one of our
favourite animators. Marv Newland goes
abstract and we love every second of it.
Il Luster
Schoutenstraat 4ba
Utrecht 3512 AB
Ph: +31 302 400 768
622 10th Avenue North
Creston, British Columbia V0B 1G4
Ph: +1 250 428 2208
Fiesta Brava
Inner View
CANADA, 3’26, 2011
The crazy cattle stampedes on the streets of
Pamplona have ended. Now, the bulls are
throwing the world’s biggest party.
CANADA, 2’00, 2009
A paint-on-glass, animated homage to
Canadian artist Kazuo Nakamura.
5787 rue Cartier
Montreal, Quebec H2G 2VI
Ph: +1 514 270 3563
54 Austin Terrace
Toronto, Ontario M5R IY6
Ph: +1 416 533 2440
National Film Board of Canada
Postal Box 6100, Centre-ville Station
Montreal, Quebec H3C 3H5
Ph: +1 514 283 9000
I keep saying it – David OReilly1 is one of THE people to watch
in the indie animation scene. He has a vision for his films that
somehow combine, and magically balance, the competing and
complementary strands of where animation has come from and
where it just might be heading towards. Bastardised avatars of
classic animation icons are made to move in a way that would
probably gel with Norman McLaren, John Kricfalusi and gamers
the world over – and that, my friends, is a heck of a range of people
to have on your cheer squad. Somehow, you just know that the best
juice from the highest tech concepts has been squeezed from that
fruit, the tasteless pulp chucked out; a triple shot of a rare and
almost poisonous booze has been mickey-finned into the cup; and a
little umbrella, spiked through a piece of tropical fruit, has been
dragged out from under the bench to dress it up and make it pretty.
And his films just get better and better. His latest film, The External
World, feels like a masterpiece to me – but that’s what I said about
his film that we showed last year (Please Say Something) so maybe
I’ll leave the ‘M’ word alone for a while. Let’s see if we can’t get this
guy out here?
The idea behind the Long Shorts program is to set aside a space to
show films that really benefit from being given the time to draw
out their themes, to fully realise the environments and scenarios
they are trying to create. Babel, by Henrick Dusollier2, is likely to
be the film that benefits most from this. Dusollier uses digitally
altered footage of distressed urban and industrial landscapes to
create extraordinary visual epics, perhaps best seen in his 2004
film, Obras3, a film so good we had to reprise it at the following
festival. In Babel, Dusollier has created a modern day Tower of
Babel in the frenetic melange that is contemporary Shanghai. The
amount of live action might raise a few eyebrows and the way all
the elements are integrated into a coherent whole might also spark
a debate about the difference between special effects and animation.
All I can say is, that this is the very reason we have festivals!
1. www.davidoreilly.com
2. http://tiny.cc/pd3au
3. http://tiny.cc/dyypf
The External World
Zbigniev’s Cupboard
Last Night’s Rain
GERMANY, 14’55, 2010
DIRECTOR: David OReilly
PRODUCERS: David OReilly, Henning Kamm
A boy learns to play the piano – the hard
way. Digital surrealism laced with abstract
absurdities conjures up a universe that is
difficult to explain or understand.
UK, 14’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Magdalena Osinska
PRODUCERS: Kurban Kassam,
Magdalena Bargiel
Zbigniev is a hoarder. The arrival of a new
cupboard should be the answer to his
dilemma but he hasn’t reckoned on his father.
RUSSIA, 15’00, 2009
DIRECTOR: Valentin Olshvang
PRODUCER: Valentina Khizhnyakova
A quintessentially classic Russian-style
animation. Beautifully painted, consecutively
sorrowful and joyous, an artful reworking of a
classic mermaid tale.
Prinzessinnenstr 16
Berlin D-10969 GERMANY
Ph: +49 306 098 1248
68 Pearl Street
Bristol BS3 3DL
Ph: +44 750 245 0093
Studio A-Film
"Zh" 50 Lienina Str
Ekaterinburg 620075
Ph: +7 343 3501 638
Journey To Cape Verde
Love Patate
PORTUGAL, 17’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jose Miguel Ribeiro
PRODUCERS: Eva Yebenes, Jose Miguel
Ribeiro, Nuno Beato
A sixty-day-long walk in Cape Verde. No
mobile phone, no watch, no plans for what to do
next – only the bare essentials in the backpack.
FRANCE, 15’00, 2010
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Henrick Dusollier
From the Celestial mountains to the peaks of
Shanghai’s towers, two young peasants leave
their village to get to the metropolis, at any cost.
FRANCE, 13’48, 2010
DIRECTOR: Gilles Cuvelier
PRODUCER: Richard Van Der Boom
How can the love between a man and a potato
even be possible?
Studio HDK Productions
10 rue Biscornet
Paris 75012
Ph: +33 1447 51051
Papy 3D Productions
43 Boulevard Auguste Blanqui
Paris 75013
Ph: +33 603 914 179
Agencia – Portuguese Short Film Agency
Auditório Municipal, Praca da Republica
Vila do Conde 4480-715 PORTUGAL
Ph: +351 252 646 683
GUEST PRESENTER: Laurent Monneron
Laurent Monneron is one of the directors of Meet Buck, a film in this year’s
‘Supinfocom Is Back!’ program. He will introduce the screening of the program and
talk about his experiences during his five years at Supinfocom and about being a
part of the team that produced Meet Buck.
Meet Buck encompasses many of the key qualities of a Supinfocom film. It is an
extremely well crafted film making exceptional use of a range of digital animation
tools. It has very clearly designed and realised characters, everything moves
exceptionally well, the whole thing is a visual treat and it bristles with a near
boundless, but nonetheless focused energy. And it is made by a team. No Supinfocom
film is ever made by a single director.
I asked Laurent to take us through the Supinfocom experience (or least the one he
had) and to tell us some more about how he and his fellow animators Denis Bouyer,
Yann De Preval and Vincent E. Sousa made Meet Buck.
MIAF: What is it about Supinfocom that
makes it such a great course and which
produces so many outstanding graduate
Laurent Monneron: Supinfocom is one of
the oldest and most famous animation
schools in France and in addition to the
great courses and teachers, definitely the
extraordinarily motivated students and
their way of helping each other makes
every project better and allows the school
to produce these awesome movies year
after year.
MIAF: You were in the first graduating
class of the new five-year course. How did
that new five-year course go?
LM: The course didn’t really change that
much. The extra year (4th) was mostly
devoted to specialising in one specific field
(animation, technical direction, directing,
VFX) and also to starting pre-production
of the graduate film, during the last 3
months of that year.
MIAF: What do you hope to do with the
skills you’ve learned at Supinfocom?
LM: Ultimately I’d like to specialise in
special effects but for now I’m interested in
most things and more specifically in reallife footage and proper filming. After all
that time behind a computer, it's good to
hold a proper camera and be in the field.
MIAF: You made Meet Buck. How did the
team that came together decide on this
particular project?
LM: The main idea came from Yann, who
was in charge of concepts, character
designs and animation. Right after his
project was selected he started to work with
Denis (conception, Mat painting and
compositing) and Vincent (technical
director, mat painting and compositing).
They had already made a movie as a team
and wanted to keep working together.
I joined them shortly after, during the
conception process, because I really liked
their previous short and was really
attracted by what they wanted to achieve.
MIAF: What was the most challenging part
of Meet Buck to complete?
LM: The art style was really difficult to
achieve. Straight from the beginning, we
wanted to reach this mix between 2D
classic art and actual 3D animation but it
took a while before finding the correct way
to do it. And, even after that, some shots
were really complicated because of some
of the techniques we had decided to use
(camera mapping mostly). It also involved
a lot of digital painting (Textures, Mat
painting, VFX) and compositing to blend
everything into the final result. The
animation was also a bit tricky because
we wanted the characters to have a really
dynamic way of moving, like classic
cartoons. Vincent built a rig that allowed
maximum deformation, which took a bit
of time but made possible this kind of
MIAF: Did it turn out the way you thought
it would?
LM: I think everyone is very happy with the
final result and the fact that people seem to
like the film. If we had to re-do it, we
would probably try to slow down some
parts to make things a little clearer.
Meet Buck
FRANCE, 4’16, 2010
DIRECTORS: Denis Bouyer, Yann De Preval,
Vincent E. Sousa, Laurent Monneron
MIAF: How important are storyboards at
Supinfocom and how important was a
storyboard to you and the other directors
of Meet Buck?
LM: Storyboards are of course an
important part of the pre-production
process but the more useful tool is
definitely the animatic (a light version of
the movie with very simple models and
animations), which is like the movie
skeleton. This is the best way to test things,
to make quick changes and to have a first
look at the final result. Ideally, you should
start the production of the movie once
you reach the final version of the animatic
but we kept working on it almost until
the end.
MIAF: Can you imagine yourself working
in a different technique such as puppet
animation, cut-outs or hand-drawn?
LM: We experienced a lot of different
techniques during the movie (for example
I had to learn how to draw and animate
2D VFX) and we all made really short
films in stop motion during the Supinfocom
course. Even if I loved this kind of
animation, I’m not sure I’d be patient
enough to work on it. I could give handdrawn animation another try – it’s the
reason I got into this field.
“école Supérieure
d'Informatique de
I remember the very first Supinfocom
film I ever saw – La Processus1 (2000),
by Xavier de l’Hermuziere and Philippe
Grammaticopoulos. With a scorching
Nine Inch Nails music track that sounded
like jagged steel being dragged over
broken glass, it depicted an utterly
dramatic dystopian panorama of one
man hiding within the marching masses
trying in vain to maintain a tenuous grip
on his soul and gather around him whatever meager protection he could to
prevent his evisceration at the hands of
the mob, who might turn against him at
– literally – the drop of a hat. Grammaticopoulos has gone on to make some of
the most visually unique digital animation
we have screened at MIAF, including
La Regulateur2 (2005) and Les Ventres3
Since then, the arrival of the annual
Supinfocom graduation reel was always
one of the major highlights of the entire
MIAF programming process. I took to
making a point of stopping in at the office
of Premium Film, their distribution agent
in Paris, to pick up a couple of copies
rather than wait for the postie.
Formed 23 years ago, Supinfocom has
two separate campuses in France, one in
Valenciennes and another in Arles. There
is, apparently, a third campus underway
in Pune, India, although no graduation
films have been released from there as yet.
Florian Caspar, co-director of Botanica
Liberta, sums up the rollercoaster ride
this way. “I learned a lot during this year,
technically and artistically of course, but
mainly about human relationships, it was
about the team work. That was a really
painful year, a huge amount of work,
pressure, arguing, panic ... I’m glad to be
done with it, but it was an enriching
FRANCE, 7’55, 2010
DIRECTORS: Bertrand Avril, Pierre
Chomarat, David Dangin, Thea Matland
Kicking the program off in style – an exquisite
homage to Jacques Tati and the uber-elegant
cinematic visuality he gave us.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
This year the films have a more diverse
look than previously. That may be an
outcome of having that extra year, it may
be simply a one-off, or it might just be a
flawed observation. But many of the core
characteristics, both technically and
aesthetically, remain.
One of them is the use of the chase. A lot
of Supinfocom films have a chase scene
of some form in them. Florian Caspar
again – who’s film has a fantastic chase
scene in it – on this phenomenon.
“The teachers don’t push us to make
chase scenes. The graduation movie is the
conclusion of several years of studies and
I reckon that a lot of students want to put
their energy into the movie and so they
often want to integrate dynamic scenes
into it. I think also that chase scenes,
given their dynamism, are used by a lot
of students as a way to create rhythm into
their short films.”
The new five-year course wasn’t – it
appears – without its challenges but it’s
just great to have Supinfocom back!
And the next reel is just a couple of
months away.
The four-year-long course specialised in
teaching its students the entire range of
skills required to utterly master the digital
animation realm. With changes in EU
funding models, Supinfocom moved
from this four-year course to a five-year
course structure. In turn, that meant that
last year there was no Supinfocom grad
reel. So when the first grad reel from the
five-year course was released, expectations
were high. And we weren’t to be
Five years is a long time to study animation,
especially at the beginning of a career.
Different students probably have different
experiences but the consensus seems to
have been that it was a year well spent,
even if it was a little fraught.
Slim Time
FRANCE, 4’53, 2010
DIRECTORS: Lucie Casale, Justine
Dubreux, Maxence Hyerneaux, Abel Kohen
A complex world of domino creatures that
manoeuvre, construct and disintegrate in
suspended 3D space.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Meet Buck
1. http://tiny.cc/f2j2o
2. http://tiny.cc/slyv5
3. http://tiny.cc/sv4qd
FRANCE, 4’16, 2010
DIRECTORS: Denis Bouyer, Yann De Preval,
Vincent E. Sousa, Laurent Monneron
Meet Buck. He’s a pretty stylish guy – for a
deer! His new girlfriend thinks he’s pretty
cool too. Pity her Dad is a rifle-toting, redneck hunter with a wall covered in trophies.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
8 Bits
FRANCE, 6’50, 2010
DIRECTORS: Paul Alexandre, Dara Cazamea,
Maxime Cazaux, Romain Delaunay,
Bruno Ortolland
Burger bites man (and swallows baby).
Homicidal maniacs between two sesame seed
buns. The burgers are mad as hell and they
ain’t gonna take it any more.
FRANCE, 5’20, 2010
DIRECTORS: Remy Dereux, Maxime Hibon,
Juliette Klauser, Raphaelle Ranson,
Louise Seynhaeve
A wondrous world of unrestrained magic as
the citizens of a little city hanging in the sky do
battle with the black giant that tries to climb a
stack of crystals to bring them down to earth.
FRANCE, 7’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Valere Amirault, Jean Delaunay,
Sarah Laufer, Benjamin Mattern
A study in statuesque malevolence. The gamemaster stands high above on his stage using his
megaphone to call down death and chaos to
those below.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
D’Une Rare Crudite
A Kaffa
FRANCE, 7’40, 2010
DIRECTORS: Emilien Davaud, Jeremy
Mougel, Marion Szymczak
An utterly spellbinding depiction of nature at
work – a quiet frenzy of flourishing flora.
FRANCE, 3’24, 2010
DIRECTORS: Tolga Ari, Romain Blanchet,
Remy Hurlin, Chung-Yu Huang
Every journey starts with a single step. Or, in
this case, a single birdman with a sudden
last-minute change of heart.
FRANCE, 8’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Joan Baz, Lionel Caruana,
Margaux Demont, Bastien Martin
The essence of madness infests every dark
corner of the kingdom as invasions of crabs,
cockroaches and even a hovering whale
threaten destruction from within, without
and above.
Premium Films
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne,
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne,
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Botanica Liberta
FRANCE, 6’50, 2010
DIRECTORS: Florian Caspar, Frederic Conil,
Nicolas Malovec, Daniel Schiano
A band of clever, rascally succulents hits town
looking for trouble and a good time.
FRANCE, 6’47, 2010
DIRECTORS: Antoine Delacharlery, Leopold
Parent, Lena Schneider, Thomas Thibault
A whole new science. Using a subatomic
resonance engine we generate an electromagnetic field capable of interfering with the
space around us.
FRANCE, 7’10, 2010
DIRECTORS: Raphael Calamote, Mauro
Carraro, Jeremy Pasquet
Picasso meets Goya, they borrow a couple
of ideas from Dali and recreate a seriously
surreal bullfight.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne,
Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003
Ph: +33 142 770 631
On one level, cut-out
animation is a pretty simple
animation technique to grasp.
It’s probably the technique you
would choose to introduce kids
to making animation. Grab
some coloured cardboard, cut
out whatever shapes you like
(abstract or figurative), lay
them out on a table-top under
a camera, snap a frame, move
them a little bit, snap another
frame – repeat 7,200 times
and you have a five-minute
animated film ...
When I was about 13 years old, I remember
laying a plan on my art teacher to make a
film. In my mind’s eye I could see 20 or 30
carefully cut out triangles of various
colours dancing, forming and reforming in
time to a piece of music I’ve since forgotten.
To my face he was encouraging and I
imagined the dawn of a stunning career.
My parents got a decidedly different review
of my plan when they turned up for their
annual flagellation, otherwise known as the
parent–teacher night. They came home
elated (they had expected much worse)
but I felt betrayed and immediately
embarked on a series of alternative careers
that involved shearing sheep, picking
potatoes and crashing motorcycles.
That stalled, art-class project would be the
closest I ever came to actually animating
a film.
I regularly walk into classrooms full of kids
who think that because they can’t draw
they can’t make an animated film. I tell
them that if they can cut out a handful of
cardboard circles and stick them to a wall
over and over again then they’ll wind up
with a film that looks like a tribe of circles
crawling up the walls of their classroom.
At its most fundamental that is cut-out
animation. And it’s fairly inspiring to see
the possibilities light up in their face as
they realise they could be animators!
It’s magic but it’s a kind of magic that
happens right in front of your eyes AND
you can see exactly how the trick is done
but it’s STILL magic.
A few years ago, I was at the animation
festival in Tallinn, Estonia. I’d been happily
roped in as chief judge for a night the
organisers had dubbed ‘The Animation
Olympics’. The idea was that a dozen or
so teams from a dozen or so European
countries would be given an hour to come
up with an idea for an animation, a tabletop to animate it on, and a basket of
random stuff with which to animate it.
The British team consisted of Peter Lord
(Aardman founder), Suzie Templeton
(puppet animation master and Oscar winner
for Peter And The Wolf) and Barry Purves
(one of the finest puppet animators
wandering our rapidly warming orb); the
Norwegian team included Piotr Sapegin (a
true maestro with sand and plastercine);
and the Estonian team consisted of Estonians
(what can I say, cached genius). With time
of the essence, these particular teams each
followed the most obvious technique faultlines that appeared before them. But it was
striking just how many of the other teams
– all consisting of world class, internationally
renowned animators – elected to employ
the technique of cut-outs when put to the
That’s the basic idea anyway. But there are
some practitioners out there who have
taken it to a far more detailed and complex
level than this. And some of them are
pretty famous.
Take Terry Gilliam for one. The vast majority
of the nutty animated segments he created
for Monty Python’s Flying Circus were all
cut-outs. And he learned much of his craft
from watching the films of Stan Van der
Beek, an avant-garde American cut-out
animator whose often crude, cut-out films
still resonate as odes to the false sirens of
consumerism and mindless entertainment.
The first episode of South Park (aka
Cartman Gets An Anal Probe – yeah) was
animated entirely with cut-outs. This
episode got the creators of South Park the
contract they were after and they switched
to computer animation to make the
creative process more sustainable. It would
be several seasons though before South
Park stopped looking like it was made with
Cut-out animation is about as old as cinema.
The earliest known animated feature, The
Apostle, by Argentinean Quirino Cristiani,
which was completed in 1917, employs
cut-outs; and one of the most famous
animated features of all time, Lotte Reiniger’s
The Adventures Of Prince Achmed (1926), is
also a cut-out film.
The great Norman McLaren mastered the
technique with his 1958 film, The Blackbird
or Le Merle, which is screening in this
technique focus program. Likewise, George
Dunning, who would go on to greater fame
as the creative force behind The Yellow
Submarine also utilised the technique to
fabulous effect in The Three Blind Mice.
The undisputed master of the technique,
however, is Yuri Norstein. Born in 1945,
Norstein has created some of the best
animated films ever made. His grand opus,
Tale Of Tales (1979), is regarded by many
scholars and fans as singularly the finest
animated film ever made. Some of his
other most highly regarded films include
The Fox And The Hare (1973), The Heron
And The Crane (1974) and, the film
selected for this screening, The Hedgehog
In The Fog (1975).
Norstein shot his cut-out films through a
unique multi-plane – a device made up
of layers of glass at various levels, which
allowed differing components of the
animation to sit above or below other
components. Cut-out animation had
generally been shot from a single, flat tabletop but with Norstein’s method the camera
was mounted above the multi-plane and
shot down through it giving it a kind of
depth and dimensionality not normally
seen in this technique.
So, would my high school cut-out film
have been any good? Highly unlikely. And
you can bet the homestead it would never
have come close to the standard of work by
the likes of Gilliam, McLaren or Norstein.
I bet I would have made SOMETHING
though and it would have been animated
in the classic sense of the word. Such is the
ease that the concept of cut-out animation
can be grasped by aspirant filmmakers and
audiences alike. It is a technique that
embodies the simplest and most distilled
essences of animation. That said, in the
hands of persistent and patient masters it
has been used for some of the finest, most
famous and best loved films in animation.
The Girl And The Hunter
(La Fille Et Le Chasseur)
SWITZERLAND, 5’23, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jadwiga Kowalska
PRODUCERS: Jadwiga Kowalska,
Claude Barras
The village is in big trouble. Outside it is
raining a young girl’s tears and it’s up to the
hunter to put things in order.
Hertensteinstr 35
Ph: +41 790 780 0567
The Collagist
CANADA, 2’00, 2009
DIRECTORS: Amy Lockhart, Marc Bell
PRODUCER: Amy Lockhart
A collage artist endeavours to complete his work
while interpreting and translating the beauty of
toiling hands and the action of scissors.
71 Arthur Str N, Apt 1
Guelph, Ontario N1E 4T9
Ph: +1 519 495 6917
USA, 4’00, 2010
Phosphena – also known as Phosphene – is
an entoptic phenomenon characterised by the
experience of seeing light without light
actually entering the eye.
29035 Eveningside Drive
Val Verde, California 91384
Ph: +1 575 640 1592
GERMANY, 5’05, 2010
Tim Romanowsky
A graphic revision of a 1929 Ub Iwerks short
film. Famous figures and classic visual
elements flow together in a new and devolved
world without rules or boundaries.
The Rooster, The Crocodile
And The Night Sky
IRELAND, 6’34, 2008
DIRECTOR: Padraig Fagan
PRODUCER: Barry O’Donoghue
A tale of passion, loss, surreal comedy and
explosive violence, all animated to create a
dreamy, hand-made aesthetic. A visual paradox.
BELGIUM, 3’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jade de Paepe
PRODUCER: KASK Hogeschool Gent
Curiosity gets the better of a small boy who
wanders just a little close in his search to find
out what’s underneath the petticoats of
dancing women.
Barley Films
2 Rogan’s Court, Patrick Str
Don Laoghaire, Dublin IRELAND
Ph: +353 1214 5940
KASK Hogeschool Gent
Jozef Kluyskensstraat 2 Gent 9000 BELGIUM
Ph: +32 9223 8102
Ernst Koenig Str 1
Halle 06108
Jeannine M.
The Three Blind Mice
SLOVAKIA, 7’00, 2010
DIRECTOR/PRODUCER: Veronika Obertova
Viliam lives in his own animated life within
the real world. Childish fun turns into a
problem, the problem becomes a solution.
No solution is perfect though …
FRANCE, 4’05, 2010
DIRECTOR: Gregoire Lemoine
PRODUCER: La Poudriere
Lots of motivation, a gassed up rocketship
and a good old-fashioned telephone – all this
crew of pensioners needs to change the world.
CANADA, 5’10, 1945
DIRECTOR: George Dunning
The beloved nursery rhyme is put to use to
illustrate why industrial safety rules must be
observed with no less amputative results than
in the original version.
Ave Hlinku 115
Piestany 921 01
Ph: +421 908 834 671
La Poudriere
La Catoucherie, rue de Chony
Bourg les, Valence 26500
Phone: +33 4 7582 0808
The Blackbird
(Le Merle)
POLAND, 14’00, 1963
DIRECTOR: Jan Lenica
A self-consciously Kafka-esque tale of a
winged, lonely man literally devoured by
totalitarian rule.
CANADA, 4’34, 1958
DIRECTOR: Norman McLaren
The genius of simplicity. Here McLaren
imparts unusual activity onto an old FrenchCanadian nonsense song using little more
than white cut-outs on pastel backgrounds.
The Labyrinth
The Hedgehog In The Fog
RUSSIA, 10’25, 1975
DIRECTOR: Yuri Norstein
One of the finest animated films ever made
by the acknowledged master of classic Russian
cut-out animation.
Arts And Crafts Spectacular #1
Hello Dad
GERMANY, 1’12, 2010
Wolf, Ian Ritterskamp
A short, sharp, beautifully raucous debunking
of everything you’ve ever heard about the
countryside – and some of the gentle folk
who live there.
UK, 1’38, 1987
DIRECTOR: Christoph Simon
PRODUCER: Animation staff, Royal
College of Art
Hello Dad, I’m in jail. Say hi to Mum, from jail.
I like it here, I’m in jail. Hahahahahaha – ha.
Wolf & Ritterskamp
Frankfurter Allee 25, Berlin 10247
Ph: +49 163 747 4888
Condensed Night
UK, 2’00, 1999
DIRECTOR: Laurie Proud
PRODUCER: Animation staff, Royal
College of Art
A scabrous display of the odd relationship
between a window gimp, a pretty school girl
and an oozing, giant beetle-thing.
POLAND, 1’24, 2009
DIRECTORS: Tomasz Cechowski,
Grzegorz Paluch
PRODUCER: Tomasz Cechowski
The professor has a theory. OK. To prove this
theory he needs a spike and an ass. So, you
take the spike and then you put it …
Animation Department
Royal College of Art
Kensington Gore, London SW7 2EU UK
Ph: +44 207 590 4512
Dukes Of Broxstonia: Wash Day
AUSTRALIA, 0’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Suren Perera
PRODUCER: Stu Connolly
Da Dukes is Back! And they’re dirty – reekin’
dirty! It’s time to clean up their act and maybe
burn some clothes.
Sticky Pictures
Suite 203, 166 Glebe Point Rd
Glebe, New South Wales 2037
Ph: +61 2 9692 8732
Ul. Zlotych Piaskow 2/79
Warsaw 02-759
Python In Wonderland
(Pyton W Krainie Czarow)
POLAND, 6’20, 2010
DIRECTOR: Piotr Hoang Ngoc
PRODUCER: Marcin Malatynski
A detailed psychedelic exploration of male
nipples, special rabbits, Can-Can dancers’ legs
and boxing.
Piotrkowska Str 189/191
Lodz 90-477
Ph: +48 793 024 984
Animation Department
Royal College of Art
Kensington Gore, London SW7 2EU
Ph: +44 207 590 4512
Meat Or Die (Yans!Gans!) /
Meat05: Linda
JAPAN, 1’45, 2010
Some insane little jabberers (one with a
bladder problem) try to bite off more than
they can chew when they flip the shopping
switch to ‘brontosaurus’.
Megro 1-24-19 #503
Megro-ku, Tokyo 1530063
Ph: +81 334 909 034
Weenie Wagon Woe
CANADA, 3’36, 2010
DIRECTOR: Willy Ashworth
PRODUCER: Madi Piller
Spurt, our ‘everyday-man’ hero has one
passion in his life – he was born to drive his
weenie wagon.
257 Quebec Ave
Toronto, Ontario M6P 2T9
Ph: +1 416 763 5767
USA, 4’15, 2010
Travis is a dangerous, disturbed and disturbing
young man on a mission.
226 South Str, #2
Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts 02130
Ph: +1 617 997 1080
Green Money Weed
Connection: “Got Milk”
USA, 1’34, 2011
Logan Hugueny-Clark
Bunkfunk MC and Lil’ Joint are practicin’
what they’re preachin’. And they’re preachin’ it
pretty damn hard.
2125 E. Ojai Ave
Ojai, California 93023 USA
Ph: +1 805 807 6593
Nasty Habits: Bono
UK, 3’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Layla Atkinson
PRODUCERS: Matt Holt, Richard Barnett
When bad nuns go worse, not even Bono is
139-143 Rankin House
Bermondsey st
London SE1 3UW
Ph: +44 207 193 6131
Mr Choco In Love
SOUTH KOREA, 10’00, 2010
The city at night can harbour some strange
hybrid creatures who stride, crawl, fly and
creep through the streets, propelled by odd
desires and decaying memories.
FRANCE, 2’50, 2010
DIRECTORS: Arthur Peltzer, Fabien
Guillaume, Jean-Baptiste Maligne, Jeremy
Macedo, Julien Daubas, Paul Nivet, Ugo
PRODUCER: Gobelins L’ecole de L’image
Medical emergency meets sexual urgency in
this crazed romp about CPR gone wrong.
CZECH REPUBLIC, 5’56, 2011
Mr Choco may well be in love but he sure has
a funny way of showing it.
Jangmi Maeul Hyndai Apt 826-1403
Yatap-dong, Bundang-gu, Seongnam-si
Gyeonggi-do 463-792
Ph: +82 109 905 6518
About A Cat
BELGIUM, 3’10, 2010
DIRECTOR: Daan Cools
PRODUCER: KASK Hogeschool Gent
Some cats are just hideous, conniving,
murderous, soulless, pitiless little bastards.
KASK Hogeschool Gent
Jozef Kluyskensstraat 2 Gent 9000 BELGIUM
Ph: +32 9223 8102
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
The Dance Of Death
(Au Bal Des Pendus)
FRANCE/BELGIUM, 8’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Johan Pollefoort
PRODUCER: Arnaud Demuynck
Death – the great equaliser. A swirling journey
through the macabre dance of death and the
passage from one life to another.
Les Films du Nord
27 Avenue Jean Lebas
Roubaix 59100 FRANCE
Ph: +33 320 111 130
SIGGRAPH – the global hitching post
for all things digital. The scale of it has
to be seen to be believed. Last year, it was
back at its LA base, the Los Angeles
Convention Centre. To put this in perspective, it wouldn’t fit into Jeff’s Shed
(ie the Melbourne Convention and
Exhibition Centre for non-Melburnians).
Shorts films are only a part of the overall
gig but they’re a high-profile element of
the mix. Each year, SIGGRAPH is a really
good touchstone to see, not just how
digital animation is travelling, but how
the people who make and love digital
animation think it’s tracking.
of film festival premiers and distribution
indecision put a bit of a kybosh on that. It’s
an outstanding film though, made by a
filmmaker who is going to influence the
way CG animation is made and I haven’t
quite given up on getting him to MIAF to
tell that story in person.
And congrats to the jury for picking The
Wonder Hospital, by Cal Art’s graduate
Beomsik ‘Shimbe’ Shim, as Best Student
Film. This wondrously nutty gem goes out
on alot of different limbs and 11 minutes is a
long time to be dangling out in that breeze,
but it works and it works REALLY well.
Sam Chen2 owes me a lot of beer ... oh
yeah, and he made Amazonia. In 2004, he
made Eternal Gaze3, which divided our CG
Jury that year, or so I heard. And he’s a
programmer at the San Diego Asian Film
Festival4. That gig gives him a front row
seat into the contemporary Asian animation
scene and the plan is to let him start working
off his beer tab by helping to curate a survey
of Asian animation for a future MIAF. You
heard it here first.
And whilst talking of future programming
ideas, be sure to pay special attention to
Animowana Historica Polski. Less a film
and more of an epic animated diorama,
it was created by Poland’s Platige Image
studio. I saw this in 3D stereoscopic format
in their studio cinema last year, along with
a number of other stunning works, and
that cemented my determination to put
together both a 3D stereoscopic program
AND a program focusing entirely on
Platige Image themselves. Coming soon
to a MIAF near you!
1. www.poppyfilm.com
2. http://tiny.cc/v482d
3. www.aivf.org/node/156
See also http://tiny.cc/za7p5
4. www.sdaff.org
It’s pretty rare that I agree with the whole
swathe of prizes handed out at any given
festival (even MIAF) but at SIGGRAPH
they got it right.
Loom by Jan Bitzer, Ilija Brunck, and
Csaba Letay took out the big gong, and
fair enough too. Wow! Detail to die for
with a kind of visuality that can only be
realised with CG and some nice tense
drama thrown in for those who need a bit
of that in their films. I’d actually seen it
before it turned up in SIGGRAPH and it
was always going to get into MIAF but
taking the prize in LA meant I could close
the SIGGRAPH program the way it
should be closed.
Poppy1, by New Zealander James
Cunningham, definitely deserved the Jury
Prize it pulled down. I’d tried to secure it
for MIAF previously but the asinine politics
Cours Toujours
Nuit Blanche
FRANCE, 1’48, 2010
DIRECTORS: Elise Garcette, Olivier Barre
PRODUCER: La Station Animation
Some pretty fancy high-speed scooter work
and a screeching flock of crazy birds provide
the momentum for this wild ride.
CANADA, 4’39, 2009
DIRECTOR: Arev Manoukian
PRODUCERS: Stephanie Swedlove, Arev
A fleeting moment between two strangers,
revealing their brief connection in a hyperreal fantasy.
La Station Animation
132 rue du Faubourg
Saint Denis, Paris 75010 FRANCE
Ph: +33 155 252 000
Get Out
FRANCE, 7’49, 2009
DIRECTORS: Charlotte Boisson, Julien
Fourvel, Pascal Han-Kwan, Tristan
Reinarz, Fanny Roche
PRODUCER: ESMA Montpellier
Gary has, as they say, ‘issues’. He may, or may
not, be living in a beautiful, beautiful aquarium
but it looks like he’ll never see the outside
because he has an all-consuming phobia of
doors. Luckily, he has a really good doctor.
Ecole Superieure des Metiers Artistiques (ESMA)
140 rue Robert Koch
Montpellier 34086 FRANCE
Ph: +33 467 630 180
White Drawing
NEW ZEALAND, 5’34, 2009
DIRECTOR: Kurt Adams
PRODUCER: Western Institute of
Technology Taranaki
An intricately crafted, ghostly and stark
rendition of a gradually collapsing countryside.
TAIWAN, 2’50, 2009
DIRECTOR: Shu-Wei Chang
PRODUCER: National Taiwan University
Of Arts
A deep reservoir of crazy-brave courage and
a working knowledge of steam-powered
ornithopter engineering is not always enough
to keep one safe in the dangerous skies.
The Wonder Hospital
The Sandpit
JAPAN, 3’03, 2010
The ocean is a symbol of life where seeds are
born with purpose for their lives. So what if
it’s a machine?
SOUTH KOREA, 11’34, 2010
Beomsik ‘Shimbe’ Shim
An intensely intriguing journey through a
mysterious hospital that specialises in altering
the perception of physical beauty.
USA, 5’30, 2010
An extraordinary act of ‘re-animation’ using
more than 35,000 individual photos to
re-imagine everyday New York street scenes
as something akin to a model train set.
209 N. Brand Blvd
Glendale, California 91203
GERMANY, 6’24, 2010
DIRECTOR: Verena Fels
PRODUCERS: Regina Welker, Franziska
A lonely cow decides to make friends with
some sheep, a dog, a couple of chickens, a pig
and a budgie on the other side of the room.
There’s just one little problem …
GERMANY, 1’48, 2010
DIRECTORS: Ilija Brunck, Jan Bitzer,
Csaba Letay
PRODUCER: Polynoid
A transfixing glide through a world on the
other side of the magnifying looking-glass.
USA, 4’50, 2010
PRODUCERS: Sam Chen, Crystal Hsiao
The dangers of the jungle floor are not all that
they seem to be when the lights come up and
the applause begins.
Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg
Akademiehof 10 Ludwigsburg 71638 GERMANY
Phone: +49 71 4196 9800
Un Tour De Manege
FRANCE, 3’40, 2009
DIRECTORS: Nicolas Athane, Brice
Chevillard, Alexis Liddell, Francoise
Losito, Mai Nguyen
PRODUCER: Gobelins L’ecole de L’Image
All pastel hues and soft focus. A very magic
roundabout safely transports a family across
some dangerous divides.
Premium Films
130 rue de Turenne, Paris 75003 FRANCE
Ph: +33 142 770 631
Animation History of Poland
(Animowana Historica Polski)
POLAND, 8’52, 2009
DIRECTOR: Tomasz Baginski
PRODUCER: Platige Image
A millennium tour of Polish history. A visceral
3D visual history of Poland’s wars, rulers,
triumphs, disasters and ever-changing
Platige Image
Raclawicka 99, Warsaw 02-634 POLAND
Ph: +48 22 844 6474
GERMANY, 5’20, 2010
DIRECTORS: Ilija Brunck, Jan Bitzer,
Csaba Letay
PRODUCER: Regina Welker
Astounding! An up-close visualisation of the
battle-royale between spider and prey as life
and death plays out on the strands of a web.
Filmakademie Baden-Wurttemberg
Akademiehof 10 Ludwigsburg 71638 GERMANY
Phone: +49 71 4196 9800
GERMANY, 6’24, 2010
DIRECTOR: Verena Fels
A lonely cow decides to make friends with
some sheep, a dog, a couple of chickens, a pig
and a budgie on the other side of the room.
There’s just one little problem …
USA, 4’50, 2010
A kind of scary concert of critters that creep
crawl, slither and bite – to standing ovation.
Ballet Of Unhatched Chicks
Play Ball
USA, 1’50, 2011
DIRECTOR: Shaun Seong-Young Kim
Yay, we’re hatched!! A troupe of happy little
chicks breaks into a crazy, joyous dance.
USA, 1’45, 2009
DIRECTOR: Jennifer Oxley
Probably the best use ever made of a giraffe.
The Squirrel And The Swallow
(De Eekhoorn En De Zwaluw)
AUSTRALIA, 2’36, 2009
DIRECTOR: John Skibinski
A frill-necked lizard’s simple attempt at
getting dinner doesn’t quite go according
to plan.
HOLLAND, 6’31, 2010
DIRECTOR: Arjan Boeve
When the winter forces Swallow to leave for a
warmer place, his best friend Squirrel tries to
figure out a way to stay in touch with Swallow
and help keep him safe.
Whistleless (Flojtelos)
The Gruffalo
DENMARK, 4’48, 2009
DIRECTOR: Siri Melchior
In a vibrantly colourful town, all the people
and all the animals can whistle. Except, that is,
for Whistleless, the whistleless little bird.
What can be done?
UK, 27’00, 2009
DIRECTORS: Jakob Schuh, Max Lang
An Oscar-nominated adaptation of the much
loved book. A plucky little mouse uses his wits
to stay the claws of those who would eat him
– until the product of his own imagination
catches up with him.
When I Am King: Tim Knol
HOLLAND, 2’39, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sverre Fredriksen
On Melancholy Hill: Gorillaz
GERMANY, 3’29, 2009
An explorative journey through
an alternative world with its
own organisms, shapes and
laws. A world of the simultaneously familiar and foreign.
Armour For A Boy
CANADA, 5’11, 2010
Michael Welchman
A manga-inspired folktale of
one ronin’s desire for retribution and a sensei’s final lesson.
The Necessities
Of Life
Wish You Rocked
My World
UK, 3’43, 2009
DIRECTOR: Kate Jessop
A dark, comical love story
featuring two paper dolls.
A relationship built on chaos
and unrequited love.
The Death Of
An Insect
(Eraan Hyonteisen
FINLAND, 6’46, 2010
Vartiainen, Pekka
In a lifeless urban landscape
where time itself has stopped
its crawl, a mad ballet is
USA, 5’02, 2010
DIRECTOR: Gerald Guthrie
A digitally animated exploration Origin Of Mass
of the struggle between basic
USA, 1’45, 2010
human necessities and the need DIRECTOR: Aleksandar
for culture.
A film inspired by the most
Life Forms
recent experiments in highUSA, 2’30, 2010
energy particle physics and the
DIRECTOR: Cathy Karol
Higgs Boson, aka ‘The God
Hand-drawn, sensuous, animated Particle’.
life forms spin, dance and
gather to a jazzy rhythmic beat. Modern
JAPAN, 6’43, 2010
So On
DIRECTOR: Mirai Mizue
An expanding cube, always
GERMANY, 7’44, 2010
morphing. Restless, no where
DIRECTOR: Maja Nagel
to go.
A continuous development
from the singular to the plural Bob
in perpetual alternation between UK, 3’21, 2010
chaos and order.
DIRECTOR: Julie Garrod
Narrative stands aside to make
way for a celebration of
animated movement with
more than a nod to the
Rorschach test.
ITALY, 4’34, 2009
DIRECTOR: Gabriele Gianni
During the progressive
destruction of the alphabet, only
the monosyllable ‘no’ seems to
retain meaning. Life from the
point of view of people who
learn and think in different
UK, 4’40, 2010
DIRECTORS:Jamie Hewlett, Pete Candeland,
Rob Valley
Altar Boy: Rickie Lee Jones
UK, 2’25, 2010
DIRECTOR: Gustavo Arteaga
Bombastic Mind
UK, 3’19, 2010
DIRECTOR: Simon Le Boggit
Kill The Surfers: GhinzuL
ITALY, 2’48, 2010
DIRECTOR: Francesco
The search for identity: multiple,
singular, personal, social, animated!
Gravity: Sam Buckingham
Judgement Day
UK, 3’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jono CandlishWilson
A recently re-animated robot
and a varied cast of characters
travel through a changing
landscape of oriental mountain
ranges, icy caves and derelict
Ooh La La
CANADA, 1’37, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sharon Katz
Composed of hand-painted
imagery in motion, this digital
frame-by-frame animation
playfully critiques the bonds of
sensual partnerships.
BELGIUM, 3’23, 2010
DIRECTORS: L’Atelier Collectif
AUSTRALIA, 2'20, 2010
DIRECTOR: Darcy Prendergast
Perspective: Tim and
Puma Mimi
SWITZERLAND, 4'06, 2010
DIRECTOR: Monika Rohner
Cours Toujours: Pilöt
FRANCE, 1'48, 2010
DIRECTORS: Elise Garcette, Olivier Barre
Wish You Rocked My World:
Mia Vigar
UK, 3'43, 2009
DIRECTOR: Kate Jessop
Bless: KiraKira
USA, 3’34, 2010
DIRECTORS: Overture (Jason & Aya Brown)
Cold: The Black and
White Years
USA, 2’38, 2011
DIRECTOR: Eric Power
Lose This Child: Eatliz
ISRAEL, 3'25, 2010
DIRECTORS: Yuval Nathan, Merav Nathan
We Got More: Eskmo
UK, 2’38, 2010
Into the Cosmos: Architeq
UK, 2’43, 2010
DIRECTOR: Darren Robbie
(Chopsy Animation)
Apache: Danger Beach
NZ, 2’30, 2011
DIRECTOR: Ned Wenlock (Hoverlion)
Sometimes the Stars:
The Audreys
AUSTRALIA, 4’33, 2011
DIRECTORS: Ari Gibson & Jason Pamment
Armour For A Boy
Life Forms
Wish You Rocked My World
The Death Of An Insect
Ooh La La
On Melancholy Hill: Gorillaz
In The Air
ESTONIA, 8’45, 2009
DIRECTOR: Martinus Klemet
PRODUCER: Kalev Tamm
AUSTRALIA, 11’15, 2009
DIRECTOR: Justine Wallace
PRODUCER: Selin Yaman
The Cockerels Egg
DIRECTOR: Peter Allen
DIRECTORS: Susan Danta, Wendy
Tom N Jerry – Jin Sung Choi (PROGRAM 1)
Puffer Girl – Joan Gratz (PROGRAM 2)
Orgesticulanismus – Mathieu Labaye (PROGRAM 3)
Oranus – Jelena Girlin, Mari-Liis Bassovskaja (PROGRAM 4)
The Man Who Slept – Ines Sedan (PROGRAM 5)
Los Estrandados – Derek Evanick (PROGRAM 6)
Missed Aches – Joanna Priestley (PROGRAM 7)
N.A.S.A. “A Volta” – Alexei Tylevich (PROGRAM 8; DIGITAL – JOINT WINNER)
Please Say Something – David OReilly (PROGRAM 8; DIGITAL – JOINT WINNER)
bric-a-brac – Aaron Wendel (PROGRAM 9; ABSTRACT)
Esterhazy – Izabela Plucinska (PROGRAM 10; LONG SHORTS)
Dialogues – Ulo Pikkov (TECHNIQUE FOCUS)
I Know You – Gudrun Krebitz (LATE NIGHT BIZARRE)
Wings And Oars – Vladimir Leschiov (PROGRAM 1)
Madagascar, A Journey Diary – Bastien Dubois (PROGRAM 2)
The Small Dragon – Bruno Collet (PROGRAM 3)
Cracks – Alexis Ducord, Nicolas Pawlowski (PROGRAM 4)
Lipsett Diaries – Theodore Ushev (PROGRAM 5)
Los Estrandados – Derek Evanick (PROGRAM 6)
Missed Aches – Joanna Priestley (PROGRAM 7)
Logorama – H5 (PROGRAM 8; DIGITAL)
M – Felix Dufour-Laperriere (PROGRAM 9; ABSTRACT)
Divers In The Rain – Priit Parn, Olga Parn (PROGRAM 10; LONG SHORTS)
Dialogues – Ulo Pikkov (TECHNIQUE FOCUS)
CuteCuteCute – Clemens Kogler (LATE NIGHT BIZARRE)
Ormie – Rob Silvestri (KIDS PROGRAM)
It’s a funny thing ... I get to see pretty much every film that makes it into MIAF on
the big screen somewhere, somehow, before it gets selected for the festival.
The one program in the main body of the whole festival for which I pretty much
never see ANY of the films on the big screen prior to selection is this one, the
Australian Showcase, one of MIAF’s most important and unique programs.
To a reasonably hefty extent, that highlights how few big-screen opportunities exist here
for Australian animation. To be fair though, the directors of just about every other animation
festival in the world would probably face the same issue when they are trying to bring
together the program that showcases their own local animation.
MIAF is based on a fairly standard model. It was set up to replicate in Australia the animation
festivals that we saw in so many other countries. Most, if not all, of the films in competition
have screened (and/or will screen) in any number of other festivals around the world.
That’s as it should be. But the one program that is different, the program that contains
films that most other festivals won’t get to screen, is this one, the one that showcases our
home team. Again, the same is true for every festival. Gerben Schermer shows more Dutch
films in his festival, the Holland Animation Film Festival, than I’ll ever get to see anywhere
else. Every year Chris Robinson brings together a tasty selection of Canadian films for the
Ottawa International Animation Festival. And ditto for Lea Zagury, who does the same for
South American animation at Anima Mundi in Brazil. I could go on.
The Australian Showcase at MIAF is one of the major opportunities for Australian animation
to have its moment in the spotlight and it’s something I take extremely seriously. Australian
animation is a fragile plant that has germinated within the greenhouse known as Australian
film and television, but because it was not purposefully planted it survives only on the
run-off from the bigger, more popular plants that are nurtured within. To be sure, it’s a
cactus – drought toughened, prickly and yet magnificent when it flowers.
In some ways, making animation has never been easier. In theory, the tools are within the
reach of anybody with a half-decent computer and enough resources to obtain a suite of
software packages. That’s only part of the story though. Actually, it’s only a small part of
the story – a cul-de-sac at the far end of a dodgy suburb in the farthest reaches of
Animationville. Sure, some types of animation can sometimes be made under those
conditions. And, in truth, a percentage of those films can be good/funny/worthy/worldbeating. But most films – a lot of films – simply take skilled people, sophisticated equipment
and professional post-production resources to complete.
Also, noodle this: animation might just be Australia’s most successful cinema and/or movingimage export. Priscilla, Queen Of The Desert certainly made a mark but when I roll up at a
dinner party, a festival launch, an event opening (pretty much anywhere I think I have a
dog’s chance of getting a free drink), it doesn’t matter where I am in the world, when I put
my business card on the table, almost invariably I get asked if I know Adam Elliot, Sejong
Park or Shaun Tan. Not to mention Denis Tupicof, Anthony Lucas and Sarah Watts who
are at least as well known in film culture circles internationally as any of the most famous
live-action Oz A-listers.
And you know what? I don’t want any of these people working on a $500 Dell they bought
at Cash Converters, running some software they pirated from who knows where, working
in the grey (or the coffee coloured) economy to pay the bills, making whatever films they
can squeeze out in their spare time from a desk in the corner of their bedrooms. I want
these people – and the people who look at them and think “that’s what I want to do” or
“I could do a better job than that” or “I have just as good a story in me” – to be able to pay
off a second- hand Camry and have half a shot at becoming enslaved to a bank for thirty
years while they pay off a mortgage and put a couple of kids through school. On top of
that, I want them to be able to pay a producer, employ an editor (trust me, I really want
them to be able to employ an editor) and I want them to be able to stride into a postproduction facility and lay enough 50s on the counter to be able to sing out the kind of
focused demands that only somebody that’s laying 50s down can make so that their vision
can be realised; not compromised by necessity.
Puppet animation takes time – ALOT of time – to do well. Great CG animation takes decent
gear and legitimate software. Creating hand-drawn films (whether onto paper, tablets or
wood bark) is a calling and the best creators of that kind of work should be treated as such.
I don’t know if the Australian auteur animation mob represent a business niche but they
are a community and they are a community that deserves and requires professional respect
and resources. They’re earning their keep and the return on investment is staggering. The
people who strive, work and achieve within this community do more than their fare share
to earn their chance at receiving that support.
If bread and circuses are your thing, pound for pound, Australian animators win more
awards than just about any other form of creative Australian output (writing aside). More
to the point, (again, writing and perhaps dancing aside) animation does more than almost
any other Australian creative form to breach the stereotypical mould of the gormless,
cork-hatted, parochial Australian that international audiences are only too happy to soak
up. Australian animation – when you look back at it – was one of the first ‘audio visual’
forms to quit pretending it was British by adopting our accents, colloquialisms and unique
patterns of speech.
The ‘market’ will never cover this – just like it doesn’t cover grand prix, broadband at the
end of a 700km road, liver transplants or manufacturing car engines. If we want these
things, we have to pay for them. The good news is it’s cheap – comparatively anyway. If you
want to run motor races, set up airlines, create vast industrial and business estates or make
cars with a dubious chance of being sold you need vast tracts of public funds to pursue
your business model. There are, of course, perfectly sound social and business reasons to
back the case for access to this purse. And all of those endeavours may or may not work;
they may or may not bear fruit. For just a few cents on those sorts of dollars though, you
(providing ‘you’ have the talent and creative vision) can produce an engaging piece of
work that will entertain, challenge or intrigue all who are lucky enough to see it. With a bit
of luck and a tail wind, it will serve as a roving ambassador for Australia on the international stage, inform or change the views that audiences the world over have of Australia,
and hold a mirror up to the local audience in the way that art often does. In the process of
making the animation, it might also drop its modest share of pennies in to the bucket of
any number of the support industries that we are striving so hard to keep alive in case
anybody wants to come back down here to make Mission Impossible 7 – or even better,
just in case somebody brings in raw footage or yet another animated gem that needs editing,
sound or some other post-production service.
In Victoria, the good news is that the funding situation is simple and clear. Film Victoria
doesn’t fund short films of any form ... so that makes it nice and easy. Luckily, Jet Star can
get you to Adelaide for eighty bucks, you can pony up another lazy sixty to get a South
Australian drivers licence and you’re probably suddenly eligible to access one of the more
sympathetic and substantial short-film funding schemes that exists in Australia. Federally,
Screen Australia, long-term supporters of MIAF (the key reason MIAF survives to do
what it does is, quite literally, because of the support of the Australian Film Commission,
which morphed into Screen Australia two years ago), do a better job. Even with that very
big arm around the shoulder though, only two short animated films received funding in
the last round. That said, although the directors and producers of those films may well
disagree, those films, from the outside at least, seem to have been funded at a level that
gives them a fighting chance of being successfully realised as substantial and credible
additions to the Australian animation canon.
So hey, things could be worse. But they could be better.
This turned out to be a much different intro to the one I sat down to write. I was going to
talk about the unexpected magic involved in watching a really fine Australian Showcase
program come together from what was a pretty slow and discouraging start. I was going to
give a pithy insight into the reason for choosing every film but I think the various voices of
the Australian filmmakers featured on the following pages speak more definitively on the
films in this program than I can. So, I think I’ll let this intro stand – or fall – on its merits.
But suffice it to say, this program is MIAF’s main moment and for what it might be worth
to all the filmmakers who have a film in this line-up, I’ll be intensely proud to put this
program in front of anybody and everybody I encounter on the circuit in the year to come.
Malcolm Turner
Melbourne International
Animation Festival
The Wendy-Lady
AUSTRALIA, 4’18, 2010
A delicate tale of love, wine, bath-time and
never forgetting where you put your rubber
1/55 Elm Grove
Balaclava, Victoria 3183
Ph: +61 409 579 485
Amy Alexander was
born in 1980 in
Melbourne, Australia.
She works with
animation, comics,
illustration and
painting to make her
characters come to
life. Amy is currently
studying her Masters
in Animation. She
has exhibited work in
Melbourne, Sydney,
Adelaide and Brisbane. Her 2010 film The
Wendy-Lady has been accepted in to the St
Kilda Film Festival, WIZ-ARTS Festival Ukraine,
Detmold International Film Festival, Love
Unlimited Film Festival (award winner), Palm
Beach Womens International Film Festival,
MIAF, Australian International Animation
Festival, OFAFA, ArtFools Video Festival and
the Athens ANIMFEST. Her 2009 film, Two,
screened at the Melbourne International
Animation Festival (Best of the Fest). Amy’s
works are mainly about love and sometimes
about underpants.
AUSTRALIA, 12’32, 2009
Christopher Kezelos
In a world that judges people by their number,
Zero faces constant prejudice and persecution
until a chance encounter changes his life
Christopher Kezelos
was born in 1975 in
Sydney, Australia.
In 1996, Christopher
graduated from
Sydney University’s
Sydney College of
the Arts, majoring in
film production. For
more than a decade
he has worked as a
writer, producer,
director and editor
on ads, viral videos
and short films through his production company
Zealous Creative. In 2009, Christopher wrote,
directed and animated a stop-motion short
film called Zero. It has won 11 awards including
‘Best Animation’ from LA Shorts Fest and the
Rhode Island International Film Festival and
has been nominated for an AFI Award in the
‘Best Short Animation’ category. Christopher is
currently developing a number of new stopmotion animations including a feature-length
film and a short film called The Maker
Press +
AUSTRALIA, 1’30, 2009
A constantly evolving network of forms and
shapes eternally locked into a rolling chain of
little ’Big Bangs’.
67 George St
Fitzroy, Victoria 3065
Ph: +61 432 989 328
Benjamin Ducroz
was born in 1980 and
currently lives and
works in
Melbourne. Inspired
by the forms, patterns,
and movement found
in nature and the
built environment,
Benjamin works with
found objects and
visual abstraction to
create dynamic
single channel
videos and animations. Made with a blend of
stop-motion animation and computer graphics,
his fast-paced works have a vibrant choreographic style.
What made you make the film?
The idea for this film came from a poem I wrote in the
bath. In Peter Pan, the Lost Boys built a ‘Wendy-house’
around Wendy Darling to keep her comfortable and safe.
I began thinking about what makes you feel comfortable
and secure as an adult, and felt that bath-time represented
that comfort.
Is there something you’d like to record about the production
of your film?
This is the fourth film that I have collaborated on with my
sound engineer Jim Griffiths.
Why did you elect to use such a hand-drawn style?
For me, this style comes naturally. I draw fast and resist
any editing. I wanted to create fluid lines to emulate a
dream/water/bath world.
Did you find drawing and animating water challenging?
Once I had established the concept of creating an
animation with fluid line work, animating the water came
almost naturally. Anytime I needed inspiration, it was a
great excuse to take a bath and drink some wine.
Why the use of newsprint/printed material in the
background of some of the art?
All of the paper texture relates to the story in some way.
The typed/printed paper is a story about Noah, Peter
Pan, floods and building a boat to keep everybody safe.
What made you make the film?
A love of filmmaking and photography. A great story to
tell and the hands-on nature of building a world.
Is there something you’d like to record about the production
of your film?
What do you get when you combine 15kgs of silicon, 2km
of wool, 46 highly enthusiastic filmmakers and 2 years of
hard work? ... Zero.
Films of this type risk becoming over sentimental. Was this
a concern or consideration for you?
We knew the themes of the film were powerful and some
of the scenes confronting; however, we believed this
sentiment was the film’s strength.
If so, how did you manage to avoid this trap?
We concentrated on telling the story as well as injecting
moments of levity. It was important that Zero was
‘entertaining’ and not just preaching its message.
The narration seems very strong (and the Narrator gets
the first credit), how hard was it to get the narration right?
There was a question during production on whether the
narrator should be the ‘voice of God' or something a little
quirkier. We tried several options and decided the deep
male voice was the perfect fit.
Is there something you’d like to record about the production
of your film?
PRESS + uses a combination of analogue and digital
techniques. The shapes were improvised, utilising a matrix
of points and lines. Twelve shapes were selected and linked
seamlessly in 3D software. They were then animated in
synchronisation with the soundtrack. Eventually each
frame was printed with an inkjet printer on recycled
paper. Key moments were then further animated using
ink and watercolour.
There are a number of really interesting visual textures on
show, in particular paper folds and a sandy/grainy texture
that appears in a lot of the film. What role do these textures
play and why did you decide to use them?
There is a grainy texture in the image because the frames
are printed on recycled paper. Printing on recycled paper
was chosen because there is a lot of noise in the original
music and doing this brought the image closer to the
sound. The folds, rips and tears happen at key moments
in the soundtrack also to give the same effect.
The colour palette is also a really interesting choice, why
the use of pastels or subdued colours?
I kept the colour pallet very simple for each form so it
could stay bold and not get lost with all the flickering.
Each time a motif changes to the next the surprise of the
next colour comes out. I kept to the authenticity of the
print and did very little grading because the colours in the
print came out quite right.
Clockwork Gentleman
AUSTRALIA, 4’10, 2010
All great actions have their consequences.
A frail inventor spends his last days scheming
ways to repair the damage passed down to him.
Marco Ryan enjoys
candle-lit dinners
and long walks on
the bea …
Originally from the
once small but ever
expanding coalpumping country
town known as
Traralgon, Marco
became obsessive
about drawing
during his childhood
as a means of keeping sanity levels at bay.
Since high school, he has moved to Melbourne,
completed a bachelor of Animation and Interactive media at RMIT and has recently jumped
onto the industry wagon working in 3D design
and animation.
19 The Strand
Moonee Ponds, Victoria 3039
Ph: +61 403 049 598
Dukes Of Broxstonia:
Moon Tour
AUSTRALIA, 0’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Suren Perera
PRODUCER: Stu Connolly
Da Dukes is back! Playing out there – way out
there – on the edge of an alien planet.
Sticky Pictures
Suite 203, 166 Glebe Point Rd
Glebe, New South Wales 2037
Ph: +61 2 9692 8732
Suren is one of
Australia's most
exciting young
animation directors
and designers working
across online and TV.
Suren co-created,
designed, storyboarded, directed
and animated The
Dukes of Bröxstônia,
now in its second
series for ABC3
and Cartoon Network Asia. The Dukes was
nominated for Best Children’s animated series
at Kidscreen Awards and voted Best Flash
Series at the Digital Media Online Festival.
Suren also directed and animated the awardwinning Monster Auditions (SBS) and the short
film Scary Therapy for Sticky Pictures. Suren’s
work has screened at many festivals including
Annecy, MIFF, Sicaf (Korea), Bradford (UK) and
the NY Children’s Film Festival. He is currently
based in Toronto, Canada.
The Show
AUSTRALIA, 4’25, 2010
Subtle and touching collisions of tragedy
and comedy glimpsed through the behindthe-scenes, everyday pre-show rituals of a
travelling carnival troupe.
Studio 806,
37 Swanston St
Melbourne, Victoria 3000
Ph: +61 425 805 232
Rebecca Hayes
(b. 1989) is a
artist working across
animation, illustration,
new media, theatre
and the visual arts.
She is a recent
graduate of Animation
and Interactive
Media at RMIT
(2010). Her animation
work has screened
in exhibitions, film festivals and various public
spaces – once afloat the Darling Harbour as
part of the 2009 Sydney Festival. Rebecca is
also part of The Sisters Hayes, a trio of sibling
artists collaborating across theatre and the
visual arts. Their recent work includes A Good
Death for the 2010 Next Wave Festival and
production design for The Carnival of Mysteries,
2010 Melbourne International Arts Festival.
Is there something you’d like to record about the production
of your film?
Back up your work. This I cannot stress enough w!thout
go!ng crazy with the exc!amat!on marks!!! I lost a big
chunk of my work during production that set back alot of
things, followed by constant sessions of overeating to
make the pain go away.
What made you make the film?
Besides being an integral part of passing Uni and itching
to create a stylistically ‘Steampunk’ animation, I made
Clockwork Gentleman based around the traditional values
and ideals between ‘father and son.’ The high expectations
that our elders have of us can sometimes throw us into
rebellion against what they hope to see us become. After our
parents offer so much to raise and nurture us, it can sometimes be difficult to see just how much we owe it to them.
What is your interest/fascination with the period portrayed
in the film?
Stylistically, intricate details in technical drawings and the
complexity of parts and motion in machinery have always
fascinated me. Clockwork Gentleman was set in an environment based around the Victorian era. The grandeur in
architecture, fashion and design of the time were all very
engaging in comparison to the present time, possessing
unnecessary yet beautiful degrees of intricacy in detail and
design. Also, being an admirer of the ‘Steampunk’ genre, I
was eager to capture the clunky yet complex machinations
of the period.
What made you make the film?
ABC3 asked us to pitch a shorts concept with potential for
longer form series. Our previous project Scary Therapy,
which screened at MIAF 2010, was very talky, so we
wanted to do something with no dialogue and all action.
Plus we loved the anarchy of Superjail. Everyone liked the
concept of combining Suren’s unique designs with the
idea of a crazy punk band – the Dukes was commissioned
in 2009 for ten episodes.
How hard is it to boil these episodes down to 35 seconds
(45 seconds with credits)?
It’s about keeping it simple, there’s really only time for one
big gag. We always start with a situation that is familiar to
a band and then twist off from there! The stories have to
be somewhat linear as there's no dialogue to explain story
What’s the future for the Dukes?
We have just finished (at end of June) the second series of
the Dukes for ABC3 and Cartoon Network Asia. There are
ten episodes of three minutes each and they’re completely
insane. The Dukes are still on tour but with a way tougher
tour bus! The Dukes deal with many issues that bands deal
with – addiction (in their case tomato sauce), jealous ex’s
(an old guitar) and pushy fans (a giant baby!).
What made you make the film?
I wanted to create a small visual journey into another
world that was intricately detailed with rich details and
interesting characters.
This feels like a film that comments on the non-verbal
communication between people and the ways we all interact.
Is that drawing a long bow?
The Show is about what happens when nothing is actually
happening – the drawn out waiting periods, the backstage
chores, the routines of preparation. My interest lies in
finding moments of human drama in seemingly
insignificant situations. As for the non-verbal interactions,
I wanted the film to have a certain level of distance – a
voyeuristic element that heightens the drama of something
they do day after day, town to town, show after show.
Are there other subtleties in the film you’d like to
comment on?
The unfolding narrative is very subtle; however, the visual
style and character-driven elements make it interesting.
My sound designer, Angela Grant, created a subtle, layered
soundscape that immediately transports the audience into
the carnival backlots, enriching the nostalgia and heavy
atmosphere of the film and the importance of what’s not
Polo’s Robot
AUSTRALIA, 9’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Peter Lowey
PRODUCER: Melanie Brunt
A custom-made robot built to make real the
nightmares of its inventor.
Feather Films
Ph: +61 438 680 068
Peter Lowey is an
who specialises in
traditional 2D
animation, inspired
by early 1940s-style
Disney animation.
Peter made a number
of animated short
films while studying,
most notably The
Little Dictator, which
was a hit at the Nickelodeon Animation Festival
and went on to screen on the Nickelodeon
channel in the US. Peter was lead animator on
the award-winning short film The Not-So-Great
Eugene Green, which was nominated for an
Australian Film Institute (AFI) Award in 2009
and won a Monkey King Award for Best Foreign
Animation at the China International Cartoon
and Animation Festival (CICAF) in 2010.
AUSTRALIA, 1’31, 2011
A melding of overlapping colour and shape in
tribute to origami, symmetry and the general
endeavour of finding complexity in the
simplest of things.
The pacing is fairly rapid – many shots of 1 or 2 seconds
only – how does it serve the overall effect of the finished
A lot of my work seems to be fast paced. It’s never been a
conscious decision to make my films that way but I think
that’s just how I see it in my head and it flows out onto the
screen that way. I’ve always thought there is nothing worse
than being stuck in a theatre and sitting through a slow
paced film, so fast paced films seem to be my thing.
The backgrounds are quite unusual for a film made with
this technique, they seem to have quite a bit in common
visually with the old cell backgrounds – was this a conscious
decision and if so, why?
I always saw this film as a twisted, dark Disney fable, kind
of like Pinocchio meets Frankenstein. So I decided to give
the backgrounds that European fable look, very similar to
the old 1940s cell animations.
Daughter’s Dream
What made you make the film?
For most of my animations the characters and visual style
always come first. Even though it’s a very straight-forward
story, I feel there are some deep meanings within the
imagery. I feel the core of the story is that what we create
in life can sometimes come back to haunt us.
Neil Sanders is an
illustrator, teacher,
designer, and
animator from
Melbourne, Australia.
Since graduating
from a Diploma of
Illustration in 1999,
he has been involved
in many rich and
varied illustration,
animation and design
projects. Recently
Neil has created and is currently co-ordinating
LoopdeLoop, an animation blog and monthly
screening night dedicated to animated loops.
He plans to continue making a short looping
animation each month for LoopdeLoop while
also putting together a more elaborate
personal short film in the coming year.
What made you make this film and how does the visuality
of the film relate to the title of the film?
Upon the arrival of my son in November 2010, I had very
little time to animate. I wanted to use the spare moments
each day and when I heard Christian Callaghan’s track
Daughter’s Dream I planned a simple abstract film based
on origami. This gave me obvious key-frames and simple
abstract forms, which I was then able to slowly shape over
the following months. While the film's technique was born
out of necessity, it soon became clear that its simplicity
was its strength. Both the audio and the visuals combined
to create in me a feeling of nostalgia, which was amplified
by caring for my son. As a child I enjoyed origami and
took pride in taking a simple sheet of paper and transforming it into a complex figure. This feeling was mirrored
by abstract forms created in the animation. The title
Daughter’s Dream came from Christian’s music but it also
encapsulated the feeling I was getting from the animation
while creating it.
Do you consider this abstract, why or why not?
130 McMahon Rd
Reservoir, Victoria 3073
Ph: +61 9462 3729
The film is both figurative and abstract. Figurative in that
it is based on the physical reality of folding paper and
abstract in the combination of the simple geometry,
pattern and repetition. I'm very interested to hear people's
opinions on the subject, because I'm torn between the two.
AUSTRALIA, 2’20, 2010
Darcy Prendergast
A tale of two blobs destined for each other.
It was meant to be.
Oh Yeah Wow
342A Albert St
Brunswick, Victoria 3056
Ph: +61 401 732 945
Director Darcy
Prendergast (b. circa
1985) has always had
imagination. At the
age of four, he
wanted to be a
zookeeper and play
with tigers like his
dad. At age five, he
wanted to be Indiana
Jones, who was a
cooler version of
dad. At six, he
wanted to be a paleontologist like Sam Neil in
Jurassic Park – who was cooler than Indy
because he outsmarted a T-Rex. Then, at the ripe
ol’ age of seven, he decided that his constantly
shifting career paths were undoubtedly due to
a poor understanding of the skill-set he was
endowed with. With a keen sense for the
absurd and a taste for the tactile, he moved
into the alluring world of film-making at the
age of 17, where he lives to this day … though
Darcy would still like to outsmart a T-rex.
How did making a music video (vs a solely personal film)
work in this instance?
I guess it’s sometimes nice to have a mood as a starting
point. Or almost have a piece of music direct you. It
challenges me to branch out into different styles and
methods, which I may not have explored previously.
Lucky and Rippled – two light, painting clips I made for
‘All India Radio’ – were never suited to the kind of visuals
I did for Gravity. Nor would the visuals for Lucky be suited
to the Gotye stuff I've done. So, it’s about tailoring a solution
to fit each project.
You’re getting to be a pretty experienced animator – where
do you see your career and your animation going in the
I've got a kids series in development with Nickelodeon at
present, called the Critter Litter. That’s my massive news,
which has been in the works for a long time now. However,
I've also got another couple of shorts in the works as well
as commercials and music vids coming in sporadically.
Live-action also attracts me for certain ideas too. So, who
knows where I'll be? As long as I’m still alive and creating,
no complaints from me.
What’s the best thing about clay/plasticine stop-mo?
It doesn't crash when you haven't saved.
AUSTRALIA, 13’30, 2010
PRODUCER: Christopher Seeto, Luke Eve
When Charlie is run over by his own wedding
car, he is given another chance at life but with
a twist – and extra legs! A story of unrequited
love across the species divide.
PO Box 308
Enmore, New South Wales 2042
Ph: +61 417 265 551
Luke began his
career as a freelance
Armed with a strong
visual aesthetic and
a talent for dramatic
comedy, Luke has
the unique ability
to capture great
performances in a
visually exciting style.
Luke graduated from
the Australian Film,
Television and Radio School in 2005 and in
the same year won Tropfest with his film,
Australian Summer. He was later the recipient
of an AFC funded internship with This is That
Productions in New York City. In 2009, he
directed Dave in the Life for SBS Television and
he has just completed production on SEX: An
Unnatural History also for SBS. Luke directs
commercials and music videos for boutique
production company Jungleboys and he has a
number of projects in development through his
own company, More Sauce.
The Gradual Demise Of
Phillipa Finch
AUSTRALIA, 31’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Emma Magenta,
Aaron Powell
PRODUCER: Rachel Okine
Phillipa Finch is acclaimed artist Emma
Magenta’s newest character. Narrated by Toni
Collette, Phillipa delves into her emotional
history to solve the mystery of how she ’died’.
28-30 Queen St
Chippendale, New South Wales 2008
Ph: +61 2 8303 3800
Emma Magenta is a
much-loved and
prolific artist who,
aside from her
gallery and commissioned work, is also
a part of the Third
Drawer Down
(www.thirddrawerdown.com), and is
an illustrator of
children’s books,
including Toni Collette’s first children’s book
Planet Yawn and her own book, Orlando on a
Thursday. Emma’s adult picture books (The
Peril of Magnificent Love; A Gorgeous Sense of
Hope; and The Origin of Lament) are
published in Australia through Random House,
and also in the US, UK, New Zealand, Canada
and Russia. She was awarded by The Australian
Book Association and nominated for the
prestigious Reuben Award by The National
Cartoonist Society in The U.S.A for The Peril
of Magnificent Love.
the gradual demise of phillipa finch, the first of
her works brought to life through animation,
heralds the beginning of a new character and
What made me make the film?
The script was chosen as part of the John Jameson Short
Film Competition and I was lucky enough to be one of the
directors chosen to make one of the three films. I loved its
story of love and longing and the challenge of mixing live
action and animation really appealed to me.
Is there something you’d like to record about the production
of your film?
The film was a huge challenge for me – not just technically
but story-wise as well. How do we create an animated
cockroach character that is disgusting but also loveable?
I'm really proud of the effects, the animation and the film
as a whole.
A lot of films that blend animation with live action don’t do
it that well. What would you say to somebody attempting
one of these ‘hybrid’ type films?
I would say take a lot of time to plan everything really
well. The lines between pre / shoot / post become totally
blurred in these types of projects. Get the ‘post’ team
working in ‘pre’ to help develop all of the animation and
visual effects before you begin shooting. Involve these guys
as early as possible. Collaboration is crucial. Storyboarding,
animatics and pre-visualisation are also important tools
that can really save you alot of time and effort down the
What made you make the film?
A golden opportunity presented itself to turn my usual
static drawings into an animation. I had written a whole
illustrated book about Phillipa Finch in 2008 and I knew
that her story had the potential to work in this format.
This is, in many ways, a collection of episodes combined
into a mini-feature. How hard is it to create something that
feels like a singular film out of so many fragments?
It’s tricky at first to corral all the ideas together, but once
you have the skeleton, the thrill then becomes the way you
make it work as a whole. Thankfully, I love the relationship
between the bigger picture story arc of a mini-feature and
the minute details that can be worked on in a little episode.
It is a film that seems to be very at home on a wide variety
of screening formats (big screen cinema, download, phone
screens, etc). How hard is it to create a film that works on
all of these formats?
Thankfully, my drawings are so naive that they seem
incongruous anywhere, so they somehow CAN be
anywhere as well. The naivety of the imagery has certainly
allowed a certain playfulness to emerge and can therefore
permit certain modes to highlight the lighter aspects of
the story.
SWITZERLAND, 4’06, 2010
DIRECTOR: Monika Rohner
Following the moon to escape the concrete
jungle, a girl sends her imaginary alter ego
into a fantastically coloured land with no
When Humans Ruled
The Earth
UK, 3’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Stephen Ong
A rolling, strolling, rollicking insight into
the human machine and its self-powered,
self-perpetuating, consumption addiction.
Jumping Puddles
USA, 2’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Scott Peters
Two narratives merge to create a third – a
young boy rides his bike through the early
morning air to cross paths with a freight
train as the audio delivers a story of warfare
in a distant jungle.
SINGAPORE, 4’24, 2010
DIRECTORS: Henry Zhuang Weiguo,
Harry Zhuang Weifu
A flower, a man and an island. The scene is
set for a text-book containment.
City Trip (Reis Door de Stad)
I Love You
HOLLAND, 6’00, 2010
DIRECTORS: Gerben Aqterberg, Jasper
Bos, Emma Hazenak, Daniel Oliveira Prins
An 11-person ‘anijam’ par excellence. 11
animators working in relay with nothing
but a soundtrack and the last frame from
the animator before them to explore the
theme ‘city trip’.
USA, 1’47, 2010
DIRECTOR: Katy O’Connor
A portrait of the teasing banter exchanged
by a couple in the very playful beginning of
their relationship.
Ray Condo’s Crazy Mixed
Up World
Sorry Film Not Ready
CANADA, 4’07, 2010
DIRECTOR: Deb Dawson
An irreverent animated homage to the late,
great Canadian musician Ray Condo, aka
Raymond Tremblay.
CANADA, 1’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Janet Perlman
A dramatic interplay between an ear of
corn, a space monster, a hammer and a
platypus made by accident while creating
experimental animation invisible to the
naked eye.
Noises (Les Bruits)
Let There Be Sound
FRANCE, 4’09, 2009
DIRECTOR: Thibault Petrissans
Why are all the noises of the world found
in the house of just one man?
GERMANY, 4’50, 2009
DIRECTORS: Christian Lachenschmidt,
Christian Scheck, Stefan J. Wuhr
A planet-like creature drifts through space
devouring asteroids and rocks and excreting
new worlds as it floats towards an uncertain
Once Only (A Unica Vez)
PORTUGAL, 4’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Joana Toste
A short, colourful search for the real origins
of life’s pathologies.
PORTUGAL, 5’40, 2010
DIRECTOR: Nuno Amorim
If all this were not a lie, if I were awake
when I went there, I wouldn’t have to learn
everything again, every single day.
Hill 22 “Smoke ’Em If Ya
Got ’Em”
The Accident
USA, 3’19, 2010
DIRECTOR: Daniel Rheaume
Holding down a foxhole in Nowhere, Iraq,
two marines strike trouble when monotony
kicks in and the cigarettes and porn run out.
PORTUGAL, 7’00, 2008
DIRECTOR: Andre Marques
A clumsy bricklayer comes face to face with
the inevitable, unchangeable laws of gravity.
What goes up must come down – only
Old Fangs
IRELAND, 11’32, 2009
DIRECTORS: Adrien Merigeau,
Alan Holly
A young wolf confronts his father whom he
has not seen since childhood.
FRANCE, 11’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sebastien Laudenbach
You have gone, Vasco. You wanted to go far
away. We kept you back with concrete and
kisses and you tasted the blood of whales ...
but it was not enough.
Swimming Pool
CZECH REPUBLIC, 6’34, 2010
DIRECTOR: Alexandra Hetmerova
A sweet tale of night swimming, water ballet
and rule breaking.
This Is Love
CHINA, 3’00, 2010
Prolific, high-energy Chinese animator Lei
Lei returns with a high-speed, high-impact,
brightly coloured exposé on the intricacies
of love.
IRELAND, 5’53, 2010
DIRECTOR: Richard Kelly
The story of Paperman’s quest to find his
one true Papergirl in the paper metropolis.
A story without many twists or bends but
alot of folds.
Morning Routine
AUSTRALIA, 5’59, 2010
DIRECTOR: Robert D. Jordan
Morning Routine is a world where your food
sings and then kicks your head; your skull
cracks open and your face comes apart.
Robot Chef
AUSTRALIA, 4’55, 2010
DIRECTOR: Wang Lewei
Life changes drastically for Robot Chef
when he gets jailed for hurting a general in
a fit of temper.
Remembering Bonegilla
AUSTRALIA, 6’46, 2010
DIRECTOR: David Pennay
Between 1947 and 1971 the Bonegilla
Migration Reception And Training Centre
was the first Australian home for up to
320,000 migrants from more than 30
nations. This film tells three of their stories.
Blown Away
AUSTRALIA, 3’06, 2010
DIRECTOR: Seamus Spilsbury
A clown, mundane in appearance, is totally
unaware his world is about to be blown
away by the smallest of audiences.
Shadows Inside
GERMANY, 5’57, 2009
DIRECTOR: Moana Vonstadl
She is building a box – a box that becomes
a place of refuge for her own shadow. The
search for her sheltering shadow plunges her
into another world.
HOLLAND, 9’49, 2011
DIRECTOR: Leevi Lehtinen
A man, discovering he has no soul, delves
into a multiplicity of darkened rooms and
forlorn spaces in a slow-burn desperate
search for his inner being.
The Orange
CANADA, 2’15, 2009
A close, personal encounter with the
ultimate orange.
Doomed Sunk Deadibones
AUSTRALIA, 2’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Bodie Clare
Uncle Jeffery Jones may know something
nobody else can see – the world is doomed.
Can he tell his family before it’s too late or
has he cried wolf too many times?
Circle Jerk: I h NY
AUSTRALIA, 1’43, 2010
DIRECTORS: Paul J. Laverty,
Ben Pearmain
An episode of an animated, online series
following the lives of Jimmy and Warren,
two 20-something wannabes living in
AUSTRALIA, 3’10, 2010
DIRECTOR: Gavin Barnett
When good frogs turn bad, they turn
very bad.
Post-War Era (Nachkriegszeit)
SWITZERLAND, 9’48, 2010
DIRECTORS: Valentin Kemmner,
Sophie Reinhard
A young boy – the only survivor in a village
razed by war – chases after a rat, ignoring an
old soldier wandering the ruins reliving old
Aww Jeez
AUSTRALIA, 5’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: Michael Greaney
God has to go away on biz, but he doesn’t
trust his slacker son Jesus to behave so he
hires the newly reformed, ultra-conservative
Satan to babysit.
Valmay The Visitor From
Beep Beep Beep Bleetlebox
AUSTRALIA, 15’25, 2010
DIRECTOR: Susan Earl
Valmay, winner of the Miss Universe Beauty
Pageant on her own planet, crash lands on
earth in the midst of Sydney’s Mardi Gras.
White Hair
Lose This Child
UK, 5’25, 2010
DIRECTOR: Yuka Takeda
Finding a white hair on her head one day
triggers an episode of obsession, fear and
obstinate white-hair refusal, which rapidly
disintegrates reality.
ISRAEL, 3’25, 2010
DIRECTORS: Yuval Nathan,
Merav Nathan
A beautiful 3D sand animation that
depicts the perils faced by turtle
hatchlings as they start their journey
in life.
USA, 2’39, 2010
DIRECTOR: Shaun Seong-Young
Ummm … a baseball is not
supposed to come out of a chicken
like that ... but sign him up!
UK, 4’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Ricky Earl
The perfect toon image is just a
touch up away ... and a little more ...
maybe just a tad more ...
Matter Fisher
UK, 7’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: David Prosser
A serendipitous trawl that unites some
estranged matter with a fisherman.
USA, 5’37, 2010
DIRECTOR: Kimberly Weiner
With a bit of luck and some kind
help, a little girl survives the horrors
that befall her village during World
War II but the memories are still
very vivid.
Tanto Tanto
Mad Dogs And Englishmen
UK, 4’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Daniel Chester
A quintessential British summer’s day-out:
picnics, spitfires, real ale, naps and some
good old-fashioned patriotism.
UK, 4’35, 2010
DIRECTOR: Lauri Warsta
Dreams, taxidermy and videotapes. An
animated research into the global reserve
of dreams.
Bird Box
UK, 5’49, 2009
DIRECTOR: Silas Money
A film created and documented in real time
that deconstructs the process of animation.
Can you stick a camera on a motor in a
round box and make animation?
GERMANY, 2’15, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sonja Rohleder
A simple cup of coffee with a good
friend; crafted with such joy.
A Tire D’Aile
FRANCE, 3’14, 2010
DIRECTOR: Fabien Goeau
OK, so we’ve got an artist, a canvass,
some pigeons and a really powerful
sling shot – Naturalism just shot to
another level.
SINGAPORE, 1’31, 2010
Cyan, Magenta and Yellow can really
brighten up a place. Makes you
wonder why they call black ‘Key’,
because it’s just NOT!
Badly Animated
CANADA, 3’00, 2010
Treading lightly as we explore the
world can add a whole lot of colour
to our lives.
Bob And Dog
CANADA, 1’38, 2010
DIRECTOR: Simin Zhang
Bob is undoubtedly a genius! The
hyperactive dog needs a walk, the
TV is on the blink ... and the perfect
reception is just a couch-potato’s
thought away.
Dog-walking Ground
RUSSIA, 8’15, 2009
DIRECTOR: Leonid Shmelkov
A blind man, a lost dog and a totally
dedicated poo-cleaning creature –
how can it not have a happy ending?!
ReNew: The Future
Not Future
TAIWAN, 5’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Xu-Zhan Zhang
In a stark post-apocalyptic world,
fauns are the new canaries in the
mine that is now Earth ... and they
are not surviving.
My Mother’s Coat
UK, 6’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Marie-Margaux TsakiriScanatovits
An Italian mother reflects on the difficulty
of starting a new life in Greece and the
longing to return to the home of her birth.
Lose This Child
The Eagleman Stag
UK, 8’55, 2010
DIRECTOR: Michael Please
If you repeat the word ‘fly’ often enough it
sounds like you are saying ‘life’. This is no
help to Peter. His answers lie in the brain
of the beetle.
Tanto Tanto
Badly Animated
ReNew: The Future Not Future
Bob And Dog
The Light
USA, 3’30, 2010
Certain leisurely pursuits hone the
Machiavellian skills of generals ...
but there’s a time and a place, right?
USA, 3’35, 2010
The magnificent evolution of light
from very humble beginnings.
UK, 2’43, 2010
DIRECTOR: Harjeet Bains
The boat outside the nursing home
is for sale. All that’s needed is the
perfect heist to pay for it, a bus
timetable ... and an afternoon nap.
Retirement never looked so good.
UK, 2’34, 2010
DIRECTOR: Luiz Lafayette
Moments lost for all time are never
Who Dares?
FINLAND, 3’53, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sanni Lahtinen
The people gather to give the King
the breath of life ... and he is totally
deflated by the whole experience.
Bird of Prey
SLOVAKIA, 4’00, 2009
DIRECTOR: Peter Budinsky
The brutalities of war are blamed
on the vicious animals that people
become in extreme conditions, but
who unleashed the evil?
FRANCE, 2’40, 2010
DIRECTOR: Elsa Duhamel
The disarmingly honest and
poignant story of Francois, who
tried at length to find a way out of
the ruins of her abused childhood.
Pension Plan
GERMANY, 2’44, 2009
We can all wear masks from time to
time and it only takes a very simple
gesture to render them totally
I’m Going to Disneyland
FRANCE, 3’03, 2010
DIRECTOR: Antoine Blandin
Some kids are simply irrepressibly
happy. A heart-rending tale of
entirely misplaced optimism.
Rat Race
IRELAND, 3’15, 2009
DIRECTOR: Aoife Doyle
When the economy slumps even the
fiercest competitors need each other.
TAIWAN, 3’12, 2009
DIRECTOR: Hsiao-Yun Lin
The fat little cruel kid just got what
was coming to him. Books are pretty
powerful you know!
USA, 2’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Ting Chian Tey
A life of indulgence and obstinacy
has brought a bear and a moose to
an impasse on a rickety bridge atop
a canyon ... cue cranky rabbit and
ticked off racoon.
Route 66
CZECH REPUBLIC, 3’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Martin Maj
Beware the squirrels on Route 66 –
they’re smart, they have oil, and they
need some wheels.
Cat In, Dog Out
AUSTRALIA, 2’45, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jonathan Freislar
There’s always a new way to nail a great cat and
dog story.
The Batchelor Experience
AUSTRALIA, 2’04, 2010
DIRECTOR: Fiona Dalwood
Straight-laced Albert throws caution to the wind
and visits ‘The Bachelor Experience’, an exclusive
establishment that caters to his unique appetite.
Pieced Together
AUSTRALIA, 3’28, 2010
DIRECTOR: Isobelle Taylor
A mysterious gift left at the door changes the life
of a lonely young boy living at the edge of a forest
Bit By Bit
AUSTRALIA, 2’35, 2010
DIRECTOR: Yangtian Li
Jimmy, the little robot, tries to plant the most
beautiful flower in the land but he may have overlooked something.
Against The Grain
AUSTRALIA, 3’34, 2010
DIRECTORS: Bob Baxter, Chris O’Keefe
Jim is the biggest, bestest, roughest, toughest,
happiest lumberjack in the land ... until he cuts
down the last tree.
Chicken Face
AUSTRALIA, 2’15, 2010
DIRECTOR: Rachel Lewis
A murderous seeing-eye chicken spots its big
chance at the easy life.
The Bacchae
AUSTRALIA, 4’15, 2009
DIRECTOR: Alexander N. Sloggett
Based on an ancient Greek tragedy which contends
that the bestial aspect of humanity may lay dormant
and can never be expunged.
AUSTRALIA, 4’31, 2010
DIRECTORS: Keiko Kamata, Arunima Patke
Rikka is in charge of day and night but one day she
is distracted by a book with near disastrous results
for her town.
Attack And Release
AUSTRALIA, 2’25, 2010
DIRECTORS: Lidia Castelletto, Rowan Karrer
A walk to the edge of the parapet, an eye to the sky,
to be free as the birds.
AUSTRALIA, 4’29, 2010
DIRECTOR: Glenn Hatton
An old tourist’s enthusiasm for photography gets
him tangled up in a local running race. Flash.
AUSTRALIA, 5’30, 2010
DIRECTOR: Sacha Bryning
Desire and desperation play out in comic form as
an unfortunate man is subject to transmogrification
and the whim of an elusive woman.
The Crocodile’s Wife
AUSTRALIA, 7’24, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jody Cleaver
The crocodile’s wife resents the newcomer to the
riverbank, an ever cheerful monkey …
If This Ain’t Real
AUSTRALIA, 7’39, 2010
DIRECTOR: Matt Greenwood
A post-ironic look at skeletons and blinking lights.
Route 66
Rat Race
animation 101
Pause Fest – Future Vision
Presenters: George Hedon, Filip Nakic
Pause Fest is an exciting new festival showcasing the work
of the leading creative minds of the twenty-first century.
It will be a meeting point for global thinkers that dare to
innovate, break new ground and forge ever higher standards.
They are ideally placed to illuminate the trajectories that
animation may travel along through our future creative,
commercial and entertainment landscapes. The Pause Fest
crew will outline a vision of this future, as they see it, replete
with a selection of works from artists at the digital interface.
animation 102
Gaming Culture in Animation
All gaming is animation but not all animation is gaming.
The influences gaming has on auteur, indie animation are
vast, pervasive (perhaps insidious) and fascinating. The
‘look’ of many short animated films obviously owes much
to elements of gaming but perhaps less obvious are the
cultural and narrative cross-pollinations such as the
increasingly brittle relationship we have with words like
‘reality’ and ‘friend’. Using a collection of films from
competition as examples, this talk will explore the soaring
visions, the conceptual gymnastics and even the cultural
toxins with which gaming irrigates the animation artform.
animation 103
Making a Cut-out Film
My Good Half - a work in progress
Presenters: Anna Jeffries, Isobel Knowles
Using the cut-out technique, director Anna Jeffries and
animator Isobel Knowles plan to bring to screen the true
story of two of the most amazing people to ever grace a
regal court. A vast amount has been achieved on the script, a
working animatic is complete and a ‘technique test’ has been
shot. They will present the outline of My Good Half and
draw us a vision for the completed work. Everyone attending
will be offered a free ticket to the future MIAF screening of
the finished film.
Thursday 24 June 7.15pm
Cinema 1
This session is free but seats are limited.
Please don’t forget to grab a ticket from
the ACMI Box Office.
A general discussion amongst panellists and the
audience about the animation industry including job
opportunities, realistic salary expectations and how to
get your foot in the door.
The panel will address the diversity of the industry
including opportunities to specialise in different fields
and work overseas. All aspects relevant to a career in
animation will be covered with the aim to assist you in
deciding if this is the career for you and what skills you
need to enter the industry.
There will be opportunity for you to ask questions and
gain an insight into the exciting career paths in this
fast-growing industry.
animation 104
Animation In All The Right Places
The Gradual Demise Of Phillipa Finch (Emma Magenta,
Aaron Powell) is a rare film. It has maintained a strong,
captivating and engaging creative core even though it has been
produced to run on a multitude of platforms. Impressively, it
works in every neighbourhood of the animation ‘distribution’
system it visits including a range of downloadable formats,
short TV episodes and as a long-form cinematic short.
Key members of the film’s team will outline how this was
achieved both on the purely creative and production levels
with a re-screening of the film to follow.
Polish animation holds a very
special position in the hearts of
all fans of classic animation.
Put simply, Polish animation is
superb. Any list of ‘best ever’
animators is going to have a
strong contingent from Poland
embedded in it. Indeed,
animation has been created in
Poland from the earliest days
of cinema with examples
dating back to pre-1920.
Poles were also among the
first to utilise animation for
making commercials with
examples of those works to be
found in the 1930s.
Animation historian Giannalberto Bendazzi describes the themes of Polish animation as a
“sense of absurdity, surrealism and anguished settings”. All true but to this could also be
added a love of complex, adult fairytales and a willingness to take the best from western
and eastern visual influences.
The names of the finest Polish animators stand high on any list of master animators. Zofia
Oraczewska, Jan Lenica, Jerzy Kucia, Zbigniew Rybczynski, Piotr Dumala. Walerian Borowczyk
and Ladislaw Starewicz produced some of the finest animated films ever screened. These,
and a number of other classic Polish animators, were featured in MIAF’s ‘Masters Of Polish
Animation’ programs back in 2007.
Those two programs really cemented my passion for Polish animation and a desire to ensure
audiences in Australia had the opportunity to see just how good this work was then and
how good it is now.
One of the things that really grabbed me about the current Polish animation scene is the
incredible diversity that it contains. The trip I made there last year to finalise these programs
really drove that point home. One day I was sitting in the cinema at Platige Image watching
a truly breathtaking display of 3D stereoscopic animation that would run rings around
anything that is coming out of the toon mills in California, and the next I was in a cavernous
old warehouse watching a crew of artists painstakingly paint a series of varied facial
expressions on to the faces of tiny puppets that would form a crowd scene for a stop-motion
film about to be shot frame by frame on a table top.
The first port of call was Warsaw. Meeting Jan (a Pole with years of working in the London
film scene under his belt) and Anja (an ex-pat Croatian) of New Europe Film Sales1 was a
great start. Their boutique distribution company represents a good number of the exact
type of films I was interested in for these programs and for future MIAFs. On top of that,
they have their finger on the pulse of a number of projects that will definitely be on MIAF’s
future radar, in particular Wojtek Wawszczyk’s new feature, George The Hedgehog2, that
seems to be cutting a swathe through Poland’s indie cinema circuit at the moment. Anja
showed me a ten-minute grab from the film on her laptop in a bar in Warsaw and, while it
won’t be for everyone, it clearly caught the attention of everybody around us that evening.
From here, a train trip to Lodz brought me to the legendary Film School Lodz and the beyondlegendary Se Ma For Studio.
Se Ma For3 was the first stop and it’s hard to know just where to begin describing it. This is
a studio that has been making animated films since the immediate aftermath of the Second
World War. All told, more the 1,500 animated films have the Se Ma For name on them. In
their museum is a massive 35mm camera that was retrieved by the Russians from the Nazi
propaganda department but which looks more like a second-hand armoured personnel
carrier from a bygone era. It still functions now, although the last film it was actually used
to shoot was Ichthys (Marek Skrobecki) in 2005. The Se Ma For museum is an animation
geek’s wonderland. It contains a substantial number of the puppets and props used to make
Suzie Templeton’s Oscar-winning film Peter And The Wolf 4 and just around the corner
from them is the still-complete set from Zbigniew Rybczynski’s 1983 mind-bending Oscarwinner, Tango5.
In yet another corner is the gorgeously crafted set for Danny Boy and before I leave I have
just enough time to watch a screening of their latest film, The Lost Town Of Switez. At 20+
minutes it’s long but I really like the epic nature of it. I realise at that point though that if
I’m going to show it, my plan to screen only two programs will have to be extended to
embrace a third. That decision is silently made during the farewell handshakes. There’s just
too much great stuff here to contain in only two programs.
It’s impossible to visit Se Ma For without getting covered in a fine, soft coating of the history
that just hangs in the air and permeates every crevice of the building. Every puppet and
piece of set stands on the 65-year history of all the puppets and sets that have been crafted
there before them. The stories that have been told, the craft that has been learned under this
roof ... if Se Ma For were a living human being it would be the wisest of wise old men –
somebody who had seen ‘em come and seen ‘em go, who had heard all the stories, who
knew all the tricks and knew how the history of it all fitted together.
My parting gift from the Se Ma For crew was a collection of some of their oldest films.
MIAF’s passion for Polish animation will not stop at this year’s programs. It will be front
and centre next year when we bring together retrospectives from three different Polish
studios and this collection of Se Ma For classics, which I tucked carefully into my bag, was
the first step on that journey.
A ten-minute walk down the road is the Film School Lodz6. In truth, I wasn’t sure what I
was expecting as I approached. I’d never been to Lodz and it had a reputation, pushed more
forthrightly by many of the locals than by strangers or travel writers, as being a bit ‘rustic’.
Parts of it are I guess, but Film School Lodz is the kind of impressive, imposing building
that the Europeans do so well. Inside are carpets of marble and forests of carved wooden
rails and beams.
Film School Lodz has been sending us impressive, often wildly different, student animation
from the very beginning of MIAF. Like Supinfocom (see pg 30) they are also shifting from a
four-year to a five-year course but they are not doing so without a few concerns about how
best to use that extra year. Time will tell presumably but for the mean time I am feeling
lucky to be there.
Deputy Head Andrzej Bednarek carries the understated but firm authority of a man clearly
on top of his game. He listens to the plan, slowly warms to the idea when he understands
the scale of what I’m trying to achieve and begins pulling DVDs from drawers, shelves and
colleagues’ desks. He provides a page full of contacts he believes will either speed up or
enhance my journey and talks to me a little about the history of the school as well as his
hopes and, to some extent, his fears for its future. Then it’s back into the bracing air, scarf
wrapped around the throat and a short, brisk walk to the railway station to see just what
sort of train I’m booked on – they vary a bit in this neck of the woods.
Krakow7! What a beautiful city. Even in the rain. The rain! The rain! It was like being under
God’s downpipe. Despite that though, as good as things had been going, they were about to
get a whole lot better.
Next up was a meeting with the Krakow Film Foundation8. It’s just hard to imagine a
friendlier and more helpful crew. By the time I arrived at the KFF office I knew this project
was going well but it was here that the pieces of the puzzle really came together. They have
an overview of the Polish animation scene that is second to none. Zofia Scislowska has
worked tirelessly to assist this project and meeting with Krzysztof Gierat, a KFF director, is
to be automatically plugged into the Polish animation circuit. A chance comment on my
part about future retrospectives focusing solely on Polish studios instantly opened up a
flood gate of information about the now defunct Studio Filmów Animowanych (Krakow),
a legendary studio that provided a home for a veritable who’s who of Polish animators for
20+ years until its demise in 2004. A couple of phone calls later and I find myself connected
to the person who is overseeing the archive of their works, and a quick rummage around
and I have a stunning book outlining the history of the studio. I had started expected Mr
Gierat might summons Jerzy Kucia for a coffee because I’m pretty sure he could have done
that too. Anyway, this connection is the vital link in the second of the planned Polish studio
retrospectives planned for next year.
1. http://tiny.cc/j5hms
2. http://tiny.cc/w0v02
3. http://tiny.cc/e9hbw
4. http://tiny.cc/eejaw
5. http://tiny.cc/eqh7e
6. www.filmschool.lodz.pl
7. http://tiny.cc/rzecs
8. www.kff.com.pl
9. www.ofafa.pl
10. www.platige.com
11. http://tiny.cc/5horj
12. http://tiny.cc/3aab6
13. http://tiny.cc/f6eo5
14. http://tiny.cc/7ygaz
15. http://tiny.cc/taygs
16. http://tiny.cc/umom0
17. http://tiny.cc/4udnr
From here, it was just a short walk beside a long castle wall (there are no castle walls where
I live and the novelty of encountering castles still hasn’t worn off) to a lunch date with the
director of OFAFA9, or Ogolnopolski Festiwal Autorskich Filmów Animowanych, aka
National Festival of Authors' Animated Movies. Mariusz Frukacz is what they sometimes
refer to as a ‘quiet achiever’. He established OFAFA to celebrate Polish animation, which is
its primary focus. Although not the biggest animation festival in the world, it nevertheless
represents a kind of ‘hitching post’ for those with a specific interest in Polish animation.
He is the author of many articles and at least one book – a weighty tome that I eye with
what is probably barely concealed envy. He’s half my age too, which just ramps up the ol’
impressometer. It doesn’t take too long to realise that he and I have a lot in common, in
particular the motivations behind starting our respective festivals and our determination to
just keep doing this until the whole world ‘gets it’. He hands over a collection of his
favourite Polish films, some of which I’ve seen but a good few I have not. If there was any
lingering doubt about expansion of the project from two to three programs, it evaporated
then and there. MIAF made a good friend that day and there are plans for on-going
program sharing.
One last stop on this odyssey – Platige Image10. Oh yeah! Platige Image is showing the
world how to make CG animation. And they’ve been doing that for a fair while. Fallen Art11
(2004) is one of MIAF’s all time favourite films. They won an Oscar for Cathedral12 and
MIAF regulars will remember seeing films such as Teaching Infinity13, Moloch14, Undo15,
Mantis16 and The Kinematograph17. And not to forget Ark, which is appearing in this survey.
Their work is a beacon for what CG animation is capable of – intensely rich visuals, clichéfree zones, robust characters and risky, nuanced, sometimes utterly fearless plots. Platige
Image has basically created an altar that any fan should visit from time to time to reconnect
with the most righteous examples of the artform.
Finding the studio isn’t straight forward. It’s part of a larger commercial estate hidden behind a fairly narrow, unpromising looking
entrance that is pretty easy to roll past. But the horizontal traverse is worth the trouble. Their cinema has been booked, chocolate biscuits
unwrapped, films are sitting on pause. First can off the rank was a 2D screening of their latest film, Paths Of Hate. It’s one of the few times
in my life I wished I had at least one kid – securing this film for MIAF 11 would have been worth trading my first born for. Luckily, I was in
the right spot at the right time. The joys of travelling.
The technicians at Platige Image have custom built their cinema to convert it – with a brief flurry of spring-loaded activity – from a 2D to a
3D screening facility. What followed was a collection of 3D works unlike anything I’ve ever seen before. In general, I don’t have much stomach
for the whole 3D stereoscopic thing. The greatest movies ever made in 3D stereoscopic were all made 40 or 50 years ago and Vincent Price
nailed the artform. That said, every second time I roll through the National Film Board in Montreal and see what they are doing with their
SANDE system I take notice. And if I have a 3D animation confession to make it’s that I’ve seen Bugs In 3D at Imax a surprising number of
times – on my own. But what Platige Image is doing in 3D is happening on a whole different level.
They screened an example of an aerial ‘photo diorama’ of an utterly destroyed Warsaw in the immediate aftermath of World War II. This
aerial overpass was created using more than 1,500 different photos matrixed, reconstituted and amalgamated to reproduce an astounding
representation of a city that had been razed to nothing more than smouldering rubble, sheltering a populace that had been reduced from
about 1.7million to around 1,000. The overall effect was less to do with viewing this molecular destruction of a great city and more about
finding oneself being parachuted directly into the midst of it. I’ve never been exposed to this kind of destruction in a place I’ve live and the
experience profoundly shocked me – I can’t begin to imagine what the average (or an older) Pole must feel as they watch this.
Another example was the 3D stereoscopic recreation of a giant painted mural slated for two years of restoration. Rather than have this
national treasure disappear from public view altogether during the restorative process, its guardians commissioned Platige Image to digitally
recreate it. Under their 3D animation process, this giant, iconic artwork comes to life; it takes on flesh, texture and a pulsing life that has to
be experienced to be believed.
So I wandered away from Platige Image happy in the knowledge that Paths Of Hate was in the bag and certain that they would be the third
Polish studio for MIAF’s retrospectives next year. Polish animation! What can you say? Whether it’s past masters, stunning contemporary
practitioners or a small galaxy of superb studios – this country is one of the great centres of animation.
Cos W Tym Gatunku
Canal (Kanal)
POLAND, 6’38, 2010
DIRECTOR: Urszula Palusińska
One of the most visually commanding films
in the entire festival. A bookshelf of birds,
bats, sharks and unicorns.
POLAND, 6’40, 2008
DIRECTOR: Paulina Bobrycz
A soothing dive through the coral reef-like
innards of a root canal gone psychedelic.
Gallery (Galeria)
Uncle (Wujek)
POLAND, 4’44, 2010
DIRECTOR: Robert Proch
The eye of an artist, the hand of a calligrapher
and the imagination of an animator all
combine in this wonderfully imagined study
in perspective-bending, shape-changing,
black and white, moving image.
POLAND, 8’00, 2008
DIRECTOR: Maciej Sznabel
Uncle goes a bit native after a sudden
electrical jolt sees him heading off to the
country for a bit of R&R.
Virus (Wirus)
POLAND, 4’33, 2009
DIRECTOR: Robert Proch
A funky, high-speed, uber-contemporary
romp through the alleyways of the night.
POLAND, 8’32, 2010
DIRECTOR: Jaroslaw Konopka
The cyclical nature of existence combines
with the past and the future to pursue the
destructive influence that ancestors have
on man.
Danny Boy
POLAND, 10’01, 2007
DIRECTOR: Malgorzata Bosek
An abstracted, full-technicolour, synchronised-ballet medley of a meal from purchase
to wash up.
POLAND, 10’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Marek Skrobecki
Making connections and avoiding dangers
is doubly hard when you have no head.
Triply hard when nobody else does either.
You’d think having one would be the best
thing in the world but you’d be wrong.
Coats (Plaszcz)
Paths Of Hate
POLAND, 5’35, 2009
DIRECTOR: Ewa Grzesiak
The subtle, unbearable weight of the
strolling, faceless masses.
POLAND, 10’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Damian Nenow
A simply astounding testament to the
madness of war and the unhuman lengths
to which some warriors go to fight on long
after any meaning has taken flight.
The Ritual (Rytual)
The Chick
POLAND, 5’35, 2010
DIRECTOR: Zbigniew Czapla
A complex depiction of the simple things in
life painted with an audacious brush.
POLAND, 5’08, 2008
DIRECTOR: Michal Socha
Colour to die for; elegance flowing thick
and fast from every frame; grace abounding.
A very big, sumptuously stylish night in.
The Wine (Wino)
POLAND, 5’35, 2011
DIRECTOR: Anita Kwiatkowska-Naqvi
A feast for the eyes: an intensely aquafied
swirl through the tiniest of universes.
POLAND, 9’18, 2010
DIRECTOR: Krzysztof Szafraniec
A text-book search for the essence of human
animation – one drop at a time.
The Well (Studnia)
POLAND, 10’36, 2006
DIRECTOR: Grzegorz Koncewicz
A rain spattered tale of urban desire, multiheaded revenge and image manipulation in
graphic novel-style black and white.
POLAND, 9’10, 2008
DIRECTOR: Andrzej Gosieniecki
The source of life; a reservoir of inspiration;
a stream of silver.
Who Would Have Thought?
(Kto By Pomyslal?)
Gibbon’s Island
(Wyspa Gibonow)
POLAND, 10’41, 2009
DIRECTOR: Ewa Borysewicz
Only at times can humans endure the
fullness of the divine. Who would have
POLAND, 8’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Malgorzata Bosek
A carnival of colour and a menagerie of
animals acting … oddly!
The Razor (Brzytwa)
Superstring (Superstruna)
POLAND, 10’30, 2009
DIRECTOR: Grzegorz Koncewicz
A man in need of a shave, a barber of
dubious temperament and a fat, dancing,
pink pig.
POLAND, 5’00, 2009
DIRECTOR: Andrzej Jobczyk
A film inspired by string theory and
stretched to beyond the limit of its logical
Television (Telewizor)
POLAND, 5’34, 2008
DIRECTOR: Andrzej Jobczyk
Inside outside in. Every journey, no matter
how warped, begins with a sock and a clock.
POLAND, 8’23, 2005
DIRECTOR: Tomasz Siwinski
A ‘paint-under-camera’ masterpiece.
An achingly beautiful portrayal of the grey,
urban landscape.
Ark (Arka)
POLAND, 4’13, 2010
DIRECTOR: Marcin Gizycki
An utterly fascinating rolling pastiche of
shapes and images animated entirely with
coloured water.
POLAND, 8’15, 2007
DIRECTOR: Grzegorz Jonkajtus
The ultimate vessel of last resort. A ship to a
promised land or a downward slide to an
ever-narrowing infinity?
The Lost Town Of Switez
POLAND, 7’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Bartek Kulas
You must have heard about ‘The Curse of
Millhaven’? How last Christmas Bill Blake’s
little boy didn’t come home?
POLAND, 20’41, 2010
DIRECTOR: Kamil Polak
An utterly epic, apocalyptic adaptation of
an Adam Mickiewicz poem about a flood
that mysteriously submerges the town of
POLAND, 15’00, 2005
DIRECTOR: Marek Skrobecki
A mysterious restaurant just beyond the fog
has but one item on its giant menu. Patience
is a virtue.
I first met Tee Bosustow at the Ottawa
International Animation Festival four or five
years ago. He was presenting a major
retrospective of UPA animation and I was
immediately captivated. I went to every screening
and began discussing the possibility of a version
of that for MIAF. I learned that he was planning a
documentary on UPA and I thought that that
would be worth waiting for – at least for a while.
Tee and I next connected at Cinanima in Portugal
and the overall shape of the MIAF UPA Retrospective started coming together. Our next
meeting never really happened – it was in LA
at SIGGRAPH of all places. We were both in the
building but just never in the same part of the
building at the same time. It was a ships-passingin-the-night kinda thing. BUT it’s there that I
learned of his plans to set up his own festival
called ’Animazing Spotlight’ and I was more than
delighted to accept a gig as a panelist/jury member.
The idea behind the festival, Animazing’s ‘secret
sauce’ if you like, was that every film entered
would be reviewed by a panel of experts (and
me) and those comments would be passed on to
the filmmakers. This can be a triple-layered bitter-sweet cake some days. Not every filmmaker
wants to hear the unvarnished truth, not every
industry expert wants to risk receiving an
engraved bullet through the mail from an unhappy
animator (some of them have VIVID imaginations)
and there’s not that many festival directors who
want to put their naked arms into the midst of
that dog-fight. But mostly it’s been a force for
good with, I hope, not too many broken-hearted
animators. Tee still seems to be standing and
there have been no bullets in my mail – not from
animators anyway.
The main hat that Tee will be wearing as he
strides into MIAF will be that of UPA historian.
His Dad, Steve Bosustow, was co-founder of this
unique and uniquely important studio and Tee has
helped us curate these three sublime programs
of classics, oddities and UPA essentials. He has
journeyed to MIAF to introduce them and will
give us a first-hand insight into this dynamic
chapter of animation history.
I asked him a few questions about Animazing,
his connection to UPA, recollections of his
Dad and his own tastes in animation.
MIAF: When did you set up Animazing Spotlight
and what gave you the idea to set up a festival in
this style?
TEE: Over the summer of 2008, I began tinkering
with the idea of a festival specifically for
animated shorts. I’ve been a member of the
Shorts Branch of the Academy since 1971 and
had been to a number of international animation
festivals during the 2000s. Oh, yes, and I’d also
begun doing videotape interviews with animators
for a documentary I wanted, and still want, to
do on UPA Pictures. These three activities
began to mold me into a devoted fan (fanatic
may be more like it) of animated shorts. On the
one hand, I loved their creative variety and
reckless experimentation, and, on the other
hand, I felt they got short shrift compared to
feature animation and live action in general.
October 1, 2008, I launched Animazing Spotlight
to try to support and promote animated shorts
filmmakers. I say “I” but there were many people
who helped, helped alot, yourself included, as
one of the first judges on our international
MIAF: Yes, and I must say it’s an interesting
experience knowing that the filmmakers will
read my comments. What has been your
experience working as the ‘in between’ when
filmmakers read the judges’ comments.
TEE: Well, I’ve been so pleased with the results.
Since I had no money to begin with, I had to do
everything on the internet. So, our website
www.animazspot.com has become the ‘clearing
house’ for information going out and coming in.
Filmmakers go to our site to enter their short;
they send it to us via YouSendit; I convert it on
my computer to a standard mp4 format –
iSkysoft makes a great little converter that’s
never failed – and once I have about a half hour
of shorts, all in mp4, I send them off to you guys.
There are about a dozen of you. Right now, I
have judges in France, The Netherlands, England,
Norway, Spain, Singapore, China, Taiwan,
Argentina, Canada, New York, and the rest in
California, and of course, you here in Melbourne.
The beauty of this process, I have to admit, was
totally accidental. I set it up this way, as a sorta
virtual panel, so to speak, for reasons of economy,
since I couldn’t afford to bring in a jury from all
over the world as other festivals do. However,
the enthusiastic responses I continually get from
entrants makes me realise we have something
very special here. First of all, instead of a preselection process, and then a room full of judges
picking the winners the week of the festival,
we have no pre-selections and our judges are
reviewing the shorts by themselves, so they’re
not influenced by other judges in the room,
and both of these factors have huge positive
consequences in my mind. First of all, very few
shorts receive a unanimous ‘thumbs up’ or
‘thumbs down’. For instance, a short that you
may think is one of the best you’ve seen in years
may be seen by another judge as a total waste of
their time. It happens more often than not,
much more often. But, as I said earlier, I get
responses from entrants that can’t say enough
about this process. The difference of opinions
gives them a great variety to learn from and the
suggestions for improvement are priceless. Just
the fact that such luminaries in animation are
not just looking at their short but ‘talking’ to
them personally about it makes them feel very
special. For me it’s what I love so much about
animation, the generous sharing of ideas. I’m
certain that more than one of our filmmakers
has felt encouraged enough to continue on in
their passion. Remember the self-taught kid in
Ghana who entered a pretty bad film and, after
the comments he got from you guys, sent in a
second film that was much better? So, the
process was one of those happy accidents, and
I just love it.
MIAF: I think one of the real successes of
Animazing Spotlight is that its unusual structure
has meant its line up is significantly different to
a lot of standard animation festivals. Is that your
TEE: Yes, that’s very perceptive of you. I think
that’s due primarily to the lifting of any preselection process and our requirement that the
short can’t have won any major award because
our purpose is to support the ‘unsupported’
filmmakers. That comes out of my seeing the
same few shorts each year win the Oscar, the
Annie, and several major animation festivals
and I felt others should get a shot at ... well, ours
is the Bozu Bronze, which Larry Loc designed
after a 1934 Disney caricature of my dad.
Serguei Kouchnerov, from the Ukraine, won the
first one. So, yes, we get shorts that other festivals
don’t even let in and often there are great little
gems, which may not be terrific in all aspects
but have an unusual story, a new-looking
character, or some never-seen-before technique,
or what ever. Also, we give out alot of category
awards to recognise as many filmmakers as we
can, since even the worst animated short takes
huge amounts of passion, patience and determination. The other thing we do is put all our
entrants up on our website with links to their
work to give them one more promotional outlet.
Finally, I should add that I’m beginning to see
filmmakers include comments from the panelists
in their promotional campaigns.
MIAF: As far as I know you started as an
animation historian and then branched into
being an animation festival director. Your obvious
connection with UPA must give you a certain
perspective on a style of animation that is
different from that of many young animators. I’d
be really interested to explore that divergence.
TEE: Actually, it may seem strange but, other
than having a father and brother in animation,
I have no animation background. I was a
documentary filmmaker and editor most of my
life and then around 2000 I decided to do a documentary on UPA Pictures. So, my experience is
not much more than a decade old and began as
I interviewed animation people. I was amazed
at how many young animators had never heard
of UPA and one thing I did know was that it
was instrumental in – and I think it was Bob Kurtz
who said it - turning cartoons into animation. I
interviewed Derek Lamb of the Canadian Film
Board, as well as many other early pioneers
from Zagreb, France, Asia, and elsewhere, who
said they wouldn’t have been doing ‘personal’
animation had it not been for UPA. Did you
know that the first Oscar that UPA won was the
first Oscar for any animation that had not been
won by Disney, Warners or MGM? So, once
that Oscar went to this little upstart studio, it
opened the flood gate to independent and
international animated shorts. I must say
though, going back to your question, I actually
appreciate all forms of animation now. I’m no
longer a hold-out for the UPA-style. In fact, I
love seeing styles and techniques in every single
way they can be and I’m always ready for more.
MIAF: Tough question. Would your Dad have
worked for Pixar (I’m talking pre-Disney Pixar)
TEE: Actually that’s an easy one. He would have
loved working at Pixar. He didn’t want to do
television animation, which was where it was
going in the early 60s, and that was a financially
bad decision. That’s when he lost the studio. He
liked to tinker and tweak and experiment with
each short at UPA and in Hong Kong, where I
worked with him, and later when he worked
with my brother, Nick. I loved working with
my Dad because I enjoy the tinkering process as
well, having an editing background, but it was
frustrating for Nick, who had a business
background. The films would continually go
over budget, which I realise now was another
problem at UPA. By the end of my Dad’s nearly
20-year tenure at UPA, they were having trouble
meeting payroll but when Hank Saperstein took
over, as much bad press as he’s gotten, he got
UPA running well into the black by turning out
low-budget Magoo shorts and specials, and
re-releasing rereleases. Magoo’s Christmas Carol
runs every holiday and continues to get good
ratings. That was Saperstein’s Magoo, but my
Dad didn’t like it because it broke out of the
original character points they’d set for Magoo
and it was poorly produced – skimped on
everything he’d tinkered with – but it made big
bucks, and still does.
MIAF: If you had to pick a favourite UPA film
what would it be? And if you had to pick a
favourite animated film what would it be?
TEE: For many years Rooty Toot Toot was my
favourite. It’s still one of my favourites but there
are so many I love now for different reasons.
Bob Cannon’s Fudget’s Budget I enjoy every
time I watch it and I love his The Jaywalker too,
based on an early WWII training film they did.
I also love John Hubley’s early Magoo
Barefaced Flatfoot, Bill Hurtz’s Magoo Hotsy
Footsy and what I think was Pete Burness’ first
Magoo Trouble Indemnity. Of course, Gerald
McBoing Boing is their classic. John Culhane
called it his favorite film, not just animation or
features, but his all time favourite film. My
Dad’s favourite was Madeline, which is the
name my daughter has given her puppy. There
are few UPA theatrical shorts that I don’t enjoy,
although, I didn’t care for the Pete Hothead
shorts, glad you didn’t program any of those.
I also enjoy most of the shorts they did for the
CBS Boing series. I think there are a couple
hundred of them, which were very low budget,
but some of them were absolutely wonderful.
Outlaws is probably my all time favourite from
that show. I hope they release some better
prints of those. Oh, I keep straying from your
question, sorry. So, my favorite non-UPA
animation is probably the feature Triplets of
Bellville by Sylvain Chomet.
The UPA story comes together in 1943. That
bitter Disney animators’ strike created scars that
never healed and even when it was settled there
were many animators who could not or would
not return.
UPA is an essential, elemental
part of animation history. Borne
out of the bitter 1941 Disney
strike, it brought together
animators who believed in the
power of art and who didn’t
believe in the relentless realist
approach to animation design
that Disney comprehensively
made his own. Together they
took animation off on a whole
new path creating enduring
characters, thought-provoking
subject matter, and a surprisingly
diverse body of modern work
along the way, often pushing the
animation envelope.
Stephen Bosustow was teaching at CIT (California
Institute of Technology). As well as being exDisney he had also worked for Ub Iwerks, Disney’s
one-time chief character designer and close
friend. One of Bosustow’s students asked him if
he was interested in creating an instructional
animated film to encourage industrial safety at
a local shipyard. Partnering with two other
ex-Disney artists, Zach Schwartz and Dave
Hilberman, they produced Sparks And Chips
Get The Blitz, an experience that lead to them
forming their first entity known as Industrial
Film And Poster Service.
This business model proved to be a path forward
and their small company had soon morphed
into United Productions of America, or UPA.
fixation with recreating detailed realism in
every frame was countered by the UPA design
style. An entire cityscape need not be a vast,
complex collection of detailed buildings with
every window drawn in and every building
represented but, instead, could be stylishly
insinuated with a few jagged lines to represent a
skyline, a few rough squares of black paint to
suggest windows and perhaps a couple of lamp
UPA’s ‘limited animation’ technique not only
sped up the production process but quickly
came to be recognised as a valid, stand-alone
style with its own rules, conventions and unique
properties. At its best, it encouraged a certain
elegance in the way characters moved and it
opened up whole new avenues to present
elements such as the hyper-pacing of characters
and objects.
UPA also did an extensive collection of commissioned films for the US armed forces, most
notably the US Navy, which employed UPA to
create 16 different films on flight safety for
naval pilots. Titles such as Landing Accidents
and Bailing Out probably speak for themselves
but Flat Hatting is the most fun and probably the
most esoteric of this series. Its raison d’être was to
discourage pilots from the temptation to indulge
in low-level aerobatics just for the fun of it.
UPA also played a large role in bringing the
notion of a ‘dramatic’, or non-gag, animated
film to the screen with their 1953 classic film,
The Tell-Tale Heart, an animated version of the
chilly Edgar Allen Poe story. The trademark
UPA ‘limited animation’ style had never looked
better nor had it been put to better use. It
proved, if proof were needed by this stage in
UPA’s history, that ‘limited animation’ was a
stand-alone aesthetic style that could be used to
create brilliant animated films full of atmosphere
and intrigue. Much of the inherent drama of
the piece is brilliantly portrayed in the backgrounds and painted scenery, which were
created by Paul Julian. (They are surely some of
the best backgrounds to ever appear in any
animated film before or since.) And the icing on
the cake is the narration by James Mason, who
gave a textbook performance of the descent into
madness. At the time, Mason was one of the
most famous actors in America and he possessed
one of the most recognisable and versatile
voices in the industry. His presence on the film
bill assisted The Tell-Tale Heart achieve a breakthrough of sorts and find a wider audience. In
fact, it was nominated for an Oscar only to be
beaten by the one Disney film that might have
been inspired stylistically by UPA, Toot Whistle
Plunk And Boom. Oddly, although The Tell-Tale
Heart was shot in 3D, no 3D version ever made
it to the screen and, apparently, nobody knows
where the 3D master is. Uncovering this missing
master is animation’s Holy Grail.
These early commissioned films gave the fledgling
studio both the resources and the experience to
at least survive, if not prosper. This, the sheer
talent of the directors, and the innovative and
unique style of UPA lead to bigger films and
more success. The classic, one-off cinematic
shorts that followed like Gerald McBoing Boing
and Mr Magoo speak for themselves, as does the
bulk of the UPA legacy that survives to this day.
Animation just wouldn’t be the same had UPA
not existed. The innovation they bequeathed us,
the pure animated fun they infused into so
many of their films that endures 50 and 60 years
on, and the style they painted onto our collective
cinematic consciousness are all wonderful
legacies. They are – in a nutshell – the guys who
made cartoons look like … well, cartoons – at
least what we think of as cartoons nowadays.
These films changed the way animation was
imagined, created and viewed. The Disney
Now, THAT is a legacy.
In fact, the foundations for UPA’s success were
built on their ability to create innovative and
engaging commissioned or sponsored films.
Their first major production, Hell Bent For
Election (1944), was sponsored by the United
Auto Workers Union and the brief was to create
a film that would encourage people to vote for
Franklin D. Roosevelt. It depicts Roosevelt, a
Democrat, as a speeding, sleek and powerful
steam engine roaring past a dilapidated, worn-out
engine in the likeness of Roosevelt’s opponent,
Jim Crow. Multi-media propaganda was a
developing tool in the campaign arsenal at that
time and the overt markings of ‘Jim Crow’ on
the struggling engine was less than subtle. Likewise, Brotherhood Of Man (1945), was also
commissioned by the United Auto Workers
Union. Based on an illustrated pamphlet called
The Races Of Mankind, its agenda was the promotion of racial tolerance and equality for all people.
Blues Pattern
The Jaywalker
Tom Sito Hello
Gerald McBoing Boing
USA, 1’35, 1955
DIRECTORS: John Whitney,
Ernest Pintoff
Hot jazz, a pretty cool band and an
exuberant revelry of shapes, all
hoppin’ and movin’ to the beat.
USA, 6’38, 1956
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
A crazy addiction to one of life’s
little pleasures and neccesities.
USA, 5’40, 2006
Tee Bosustow
An introduction to the history and
back story of UPA from animation
writer, producer and historian, Tom
USA, 6’55, 1951
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
One of the most famous cartoons
ever created. Gerald McBoing Boing
can’t make words, he just goes
“boing boing” instead.
USA, 3’35, 1955
DIRECTOR: Osmond Evans
Yippy yay yay, there’d never been
three cowhands who could draw
a gun, use a rope or run like
Darefoot Dan.
Mr. Charmley Greets
A Lady
USA, 3’35, 1955
There is but a single way to greet
a lady. There are rules, you know!
Be Quiet, Kind, And
USA, 4’15, 1955
DIRECTOR: Phil Duncan
A simple creed for a good life –
crooned low and mellow.
The Lost Duchess
USA, 5’55, 1955
DIRECTOR: Rod Scribner
Case No 600. The private dick search
for a missing duchess – UPA style.
Bringing Up Mother
USA, 6’35, 1954
DIRECTOR: William T. Hurtz
Life is tough on these hard-boiled
streets when you’re John Smith and
you’re on the run from da cops.
The Wonder Gloves
USA, 6’40, 1951
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
The gloves are what makes the vital
difference – just pull ’em on and,
shazam, you’re the champ.
Christopher Crumpet
USA, 6’50, 1953
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
Well, you know Christopher. You get
him what he wants or you have a
chicken for a son. Problem is,
Christopher wants a rocketship.
Rooty Toot Toot
USA, 7’35, 1952
DIRECTOR: John Hubley
An open and shut case: a smoking
gun, a femme fatale, a shyster lawyer
and a Rooty Toot Toot. She shot her
man ‘cause he done her wrong.
Hell Bent For Election
The Unicorn In The
USA, 12’30, 1944
DIRECTOR: Chuck Jones
One of UPA’s first films and a true
classic. An express train-sized push
to get Roosevelt elected.
USA, 6’40, 1953
DIRECTOR: William T. Hurtz
Being a little bit crazy has its
advantages. Is there REALLY a
unicorn in the garden?
Brotherhood Of Man
Fudget’s Budget
USA, 10’35, 1945
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
An early, commissioned UPA film
that showed just what they were
capable of as they make the case for
multiculturalism in a pre-PC world.
USA, 6’45, 1954
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
Say hello to George and Irene
Fudget, just two of the courageous
people who live within a family
budget (and you know that rhymes).
Flat Hatting
The Tell-Tale Heart
USA, 5’45, 1946
DIRECTOR: John Hubley
They don’t train ‘em with cartoons
anymore! A wonderful ‘instructional’
film designed to warn US Air Force
pilots about the perils of cowboy
USA, 7’45, 1953
DIRECTOR: Ted Parmelee
A true classic and a complete change
of vibe. An absorbing adaptation of
the Edgar Allan Poe tale, narrated
with chilling effect by James Mason.
The Magic Fluke (aka Fox
And Crow)
USA, 6’55, 1949
DIRECTOR: John Hubley
The quintessential UPA cartoon.
The tale of Fox, the suave band
leader, and Crow, his multi-talented
one man band.
USA, 6’40, 1952
DIRECTOR: Robert Cannon
Twelve school girls on a Paris
sojourn and Madeline is the
smallest one, the smallest one of all.
The Jaywalker
Tom Sito Hello
Gerald McBoing Boing
Be Quiet, Kind, And Gentle
Bringing Up Mother
Brotherhood Of Man
Fudget’s Budget
Rooty Toot Toot
The Magic Fluke
The Tell-Tale Heart
Mister Magoo. Where to begin? Mister Magoo has to be one of the
most beloved cartoon characters of all time.
Looking back through our twenty-first century spectacles, it’s easy to
miss some of the revolutionary aspects of that half-blind old duffer.
Firstly, he was a ‘human’ character in every sense except the literal.
Think back to those times and the vast majority of cartoon characters
were animals. Humans, if they appeared at all, tended to be either
relegated to bit parts, often as the hapless foils to cunning animal plots,
or they would not have particularly human properties – they could
sustain all sorts of violent damage, hang suspended in mid-air or flip
over heavy objects in their paths.
Magoo did not fit either of those templates. He was the centre of every
plot and most of the physical properties of the universe applied to him.
In fact, that’s where a lot of the drama and the humour came from.
Magoo couldn’t defy gravity, wouldn’t be able to sustain being hit by
a car and would certainly be calling it a day if he were to plummet to
the earth from a great height. His obstinate refusal to accept his shortsightedness constantly put him at risk of succumbing to these fates and
the dramatic/comic tension came from us, the audience, knowing he
couldn’t survive the fate he was blindly stumbling towards and that
some utterly unlikely miracle would be required to save him.
His first name was Quincy; he had a hopeless nephew called Waldo;
and a dog named McBarker, who bore a striking resemblance to his
We first met Mister Magoo in 1949 when Ragtime Bear was released.
Created by John Hubley, it unleashed a surprisingly well-formed
Magoo onto the world. He would go through a variety of subtle visual
redesigns during his cinema career but his character contained most of
the resplendent flaws that would entertain audiences for the rest of
time. His ego was one that arrived more or less fully formed. He was
born unto us as a man stubbornly certain of his infallibility at every
turn and this would never waiver.
The Ragtime Bear
USA, 7’15, 1949
DIRECTOR: John Hubley
Magoo mistakes a banjo-playing
grizzly bear for his nephew, Waldo,
during a weekend trip to Hodge
Podge Lodge.
Trouble Indemnity
USA, 6’40, 1950
DIRECTOR: Pete Burness
Mr Tirebiter, a slippery insurance
salesman, signs up Magoo for a juicy
$400k policy. It’s looking pretty
good until Magoo takes a shortcut
through a construction site.
Multiple risks!
Fearing his troubles with the blacklist were far from over, Hubley
handed over the Magoo character to William T Hurtz and then to Pete
Burness, who went on to become the most prolific of all the Magoo
directors. Under the watch of Burness, Magoo went on to win two
Oscars – one in 1955 for When Magoo Flew and the other in 1966 for
Magoo’s Puddle Jumper.
Barefaced Flatfoot
USA, 6’50, 1951
DIRECTOR: John Hubley
Things traverse from silly to sillier
when Magoo plays amateur
detective in a bid to save Waldo
from the non-existent dark forces
of the night.
Trouble Indemnity
Hotsy Footsy
USA, 6’30, 1952
DIRECTOR: William T. Hurtz
A wild night on the dance floor gets
everyone in a spin when Magoo
steps into a spotlight he can’t quite
see. Oooh, that Magoo.
Magoo Express
USA, 6’15, 1955
DIRECTOR: Pete Burness
Spies, mysterious plots and subtle
subterfuge cascade around Magoo
after he smuggles his poodle, Gigi,
onto the Orient Express.
Hotsy Footsy
That voice! For Magoo’s whole entire cinematic career he was voiced
entirely by Jim Backus. Some blessed with a long, and still functioning,
memory will remember having seen Backus play James Dean’s father
in Rebel Without A Cause and those with a taste for a certain flavour of
retro might connect the dots and remember him as Thurston Howell
III in Gilligan’s Island. He also had occasional walk-on roles in shows
such as The Brady Bunch and The Beverly Hillbillies and he did most of
the voice work in the Magoo revivals in the late 1960s and early 1970s.
Magoo moved to TV in 1960 but was being animated by a different
company. The pressures of TV production timelines, the introduction
of new character sidekicks and – who knows – maybe the changing
times and tastes just weren’t kind to Magoo. He would never really be
quite the same.
Leslie Neilson played Magoo in a live-action feature film based on the
character which, in the parlance of the industry, was deemed to “have
not found critical or popular acclaim”. Perhaps the strongest legacy of
this particular experiment is some ‘interesting’ news clippings criticising
the production for its negative portrayal of people with impaired sight.
Fair enough, that was then and this is now. But we still have the originals
to look back on and they’re glorious!!
When Magoo Flew
USA, 6’30, 1955
DIRECTOR: Pete Burness
Magoo takes a wrong turn on the
way to the cinema and winds up on
an aeroplane. A little disappointed
with the picture, he decides to step
out for a moment.
Hubley deserves much of the credit for the creation of the early
Magoo. Hubley had, however, run afoul of that rotten little historical
question mark Joe McCarthy and found himself on the infamous
blacklist. It’s not an especially long stretch to see elements of protest
and parody in Magoo’s latent, blind conservative outlook on life and
legend has it that Magoo was originally conceived as a character who
would be capable of voicing strident tracts of foolish misanthropy as a
form of social satire for the entertainment of those with willing eyes
and ears.
Magoo Express
London’s Royal College of Art animation
department has been doing what they
do best for 25 years – where does the
time go?! There’s not been a year that
MIAF hasn’t happily played a healthy
number of RCA films in competition
and with the quarter century ticking
over we decided it was time to do a
stock-take on the hundreds of films
that have been created there.
A Retrospective
But where to begin? In true MIAF style
we went straight to the top. That would
be Joan Ashworth, Professor and Head
of Animation at RCA. Despite being
nearly an hour late (a classic London
distance miscalculation common to us
simple country folk not savvy to the
ways of the big city) I was gifted a
collection of RCA’s ‘best’ 100 films.
This is now one of my most treasured
possessions and the temptation was to
leave immediately before they changed
their minds and asked for them back.
The study of Animation at the Royal College of Art, London, began in 1958 as part of the
Film and Television Department, which drew together students from across the College
who were curious about filmmaking. This included the Brothers Quay, Phil Mulloy, Vera
Neubauer and Ridley Scott. Animation became a separate area of study in 1985, with the
first MA Animation students graduating in 1987.
From that staggering collection of
animated wonderfulness comes this
tribute to 25 years of outstanding
animation craft. I must have watched
those 100 films at least a dozen times
a piece. Several months after that
initial meeting I sat down with Joan
again, this time at a festival in Estonia
where she was presenting her own
version of the RCA 25th anniversary
program, and we compared notes,
swapped ideas and she helped me
refine the MIAF retrospective.
Joan Ashworth is an accomplished
filmmaker in her own right1. Her
film Mushroom Thief is playing in
competition and will be fresh from a
screening at the Edinburgh Film
Festival just days before it hits MIAF.
Her most successful film to date How
Mermaids Breed (2002) set a very high
bar for the CG design and animation of
water. It showed at virtually every
key animation festival in the world at
the time.
Joan’s overview of the RCA animation
course taken from the notes of the
retrospective curated by RCA itself
gives a wonderfully stripped down
picture of the course’s history and its
immersive, integrated approach to
teaching its students.
This collection brings together films from the first 25 years of the study and practice of
animation at the Royal College of Art. These films map the growth of the course during a
period of expansion, diversity and growing confidence for animation, and evidence the
changes in technology and contemporary art practice.
The filmmakers emerging from this Master’s course have contributed substantially to the
development of animation as an innovative and exciting medium, and have helped to
shape the independent culture and vibrant industry of animation.
Students come to the College from a variety of different disciplines and backgrounds,
bringing together an eclectic mix of artistic expertise and technical knowledge. This potent
mix is a key element of the ‘crucible of genius’ referred to by Eric Loret of Liberation,
France, when writing about the Royal College of Arts.
Immersed in an environment of lectures, debates and workshops, students navigate
influences from a wide range of subject areas while being practically supported by technical
and subject-specific expertise, from practicing filmmakers and subtle thinkers. As with all
courses at the College, students are encouraged to reflect on and engage with contemporary
art practice, film and animation theory, as well as the practical and physical making of
moving-image projects.
Animation provides an immersive environment that draws out the personal response to
the world, and helps strengthen and refine a personal voice. This development of ideas and
imagination, and the playful use of animation tools, is crucial to the development of the
subject and yields surprising, delightful and powerful work.
The Animation Department aims to invigorate the medium into a new position in the art
world, to find new audiences and new contexts for exhibition.
Professor Joan Ashworth
Head of Animation Department
Royal College of Art
1. www.joanashworth.com
Animation Is …
Some illustrious RCA alumni and famous friends reflect
on the nature of animation.
“Animation is still the best way I know to make a dog say
funny things, to divert the debilitating effects of gravity and
to shine a dim light upon the beauty and stupidity of staying
indoors for lengthy periods with a pen, a computer and a
shed-full of crap.” STUART HILTON
“Animation is a CCTV system surreptitiously on the look out
for clandestine activity in the forgotten airport lounge of the
Hello Dad
This Is Harrow
UK, 1’38, 1987
DIRECTOR: Christoph Simon
Hello Dad, I’m in jail. Say hi to
Mum, from jail. I like it here, it’s
warm, I’m in jail.
UK, 4’15, 2001
DIRECTOR: Monika Forsberg
In Harrow there is a curry place
called Lahore, and a corner shop
with nice people. In one of the
houses is Ethol – and she KNOWS
a thing or two.
The Ticker Talks
UK, 7’30, 1995
DIRECTOR: Steven Harding-Hill
The whole life story of a simple,
heartless man.
“Animation is addictive! Animation is ‘Jesus I’m not going
to put myself through this again’. And you always do it again.”
“Reinventing the universe 25 frames per second (unless you’re
working on 2s). A practice that allows unlimited expression
and exploration of ideas.” JOE KING
“Animation is a ridiculous alternative to shooting things
live action.” MARK HEWIS
“Moving painting and visual music. It is poetry, sculpture
and dance. Animation is an amalgamation of all art forms.
Animation is a condensation of time and meaning, and
animation is the mother of all film. And its daddy, too.”
“Animation is basic magic – it steals time and loans it to
inanimate matter – so it can dance.”
“Animation is the world’s favourite magic trick.”
UK, 5’40, 2001
DIRECTOR: Suzie Templeton
Some of life’s grimmer realities
are simple to grasp but difficult to
explain. From the filmmaker who
went on to make the Academy
Award-winning Peter And The Wolf.
“Animation is 25 frames per second, or 24 frames per second
if you’re viewing on an old film projector. Animation is
repetition. Animation is repetition, but slightly different.”
UK, 1’05, 1996
DIRECTOR: Jan Otto Ertesvag
A short, sharp, finely sculptured
abstract swarm of swarms.
UK, 3’00, 1991
DIRECTOR: Stuart Hilton
30 seconds to go. Surge. Heat.
Eat. Thank God Dad’s safe. I have
something to do.
Moi, L’Autre
UK, 6’20, 1999
DIRECTOR: Marie Paccou
The lines that join and the lines that
separate mothers and daughters.
Animated entirely in evocative sand
UK, 3’10, 1992
DIRECTOR: John Parry
Playing ball, hanging washing,
plenty of room to run around. A
story told in 10,000 water colours.
Nothing Happened
UK, 6’25, 1993
Rubber stampery ratcheted up to an
intricate artform. Signs, arrows and
a hundred childhood memories.
UK, 4’50, 2007
The gradual dissolution of love as a
once-exciting moustache heads for
middle age.
UK, 5’20, 2008
DIRECTOR: Ed Suckling
Heather is out of control. After two
weeks, I asked her to marry me.
I expected her to say no.
She said yes.
“Animation is the root of all film. Animation is the art of
visual deception.” MATT BALDWIN
UK, 7’40, 1989
DIRECTOR: Karen Kelly
A tribute to the fallen heroes who
sacrificed their lives labouring in
the treacherous gold mines for a
Prophet And Lo$$
UK, 4’25, 1988
DIRECTOR: Jonathan Bairstow
Dollars, dreams and a crazy dance.
Pulling the levers of power to the
beat of a different drum.
UK, 9’15, 1990
DIRECTOR: Andrew McEwan
A bubbling, gurgling, oozing tour
through the tiniest of worlds.
“Animation is one of the very few mediums that can really
connect your brain to the outside world… with animation
you can put out what is really deep inside. You use your limbs,
you use your hands, to translate what is inside, what is in
your brain.”
The Ticker Talks
Nothing Happened Today
Profit And Lo$$
Converging threads. This program had a
winding path to the big screen. It was originally envisaged as a historical New York
animation program, the notion for which
was realised when New York became the
intersection for a number of animation
avenues I was travelling down at the time.
Researching the Felix The Cat1 Retrospective for MIAF 10 was probably the catalyst.
Otto Messmer and Pat Sullivan (director
and producer respectively) created Felix in a
cramped little office not far from Central
Park. That building still stands and I was
keen to see it and to talk to Felix historian
extraordinaire John Canemaker2, who, in
addition to writing the definitive history
of Felix, is an Oscar-winning animator.
I had also seen a retrospective of Emile
Cohl3 in Paris and I had gleaned alot of
information from the presenters of that
program4. Born in France in the 1857,
Cohl is considered by many (and most
definitely by himself) to have been the
inventor of modern animation, creating
many of the key techniques that would
underpin the production of animated film
from that point onwards. His first film,
Fantasmagoria, created in 1908, signalled
Cohl’s arrival as an animation pioneer and
he moved to New York soon afterwards, where
he made many narrative and abstract films.
1. http://tiny.cc/mchbz
2. http://tiny.cc/p2z4t
3. http://tiny.cc/ou9u4
4. http://tiny.cc/rntku
5. http://tiny.cc/4cl0o
6. www.jjsedelmaier.com
7. http://tiny.cc/9gpp2
8. www.signebaumane.com
9. http://tiny.cc/uknv9
10. http://tiny.cc/49sor
11. http://tiny.cc/c560v
12. http://tiny.cc/8f37i
13. http://tiny.cc/fvhnb
14. http://tiny.cc/vipzi
15. http://tiny.cc/ulp5h
16. http://tiny.cc/nuv0k
17. http://tiny.cc/56u9g
18. www.tastyhand.com
19. www.film-makerscoop.com
20. www.marthacolburn.com
21. http://tiny.cc/ywa2t
22. www.stretchfilms.com
23. http://tiny.cc/2aez2
24. http://tiny.cc/kaoja
But the clincher was an exhibition entitled
It All Started Here5, curated by JJ Sadelmaier6 and Howard Beckerman7, that
celebrated 103 years of animation history in
New York. JJ is just one of those guys you
feel lucky to know. His studio is the kind of
place you want to be just locked inside of
and left. It contains thousands of items collected over a lifetime, celebrating the tools,
stories, products and history of animating
in general and New York animation in
particular. JJ picked up what was left of me
at JFK airport one morning after United
Airlines had worked their magic on me for
nigh on 30 hours and sat me down in the
middle of this treasure trove with a vandalstrength coffee and a notepad. It was like
being given keys to the magic kingdom.
Plans to bring JJ out to MIAF in 2009 were
sacrificed on the twin black altars of
schedule conflicts and budget restraints but
since then the momentum for something
with a New York flavour in MIAF has
gathered critical mass. So here we are.
Oddly, perhaps, the New York indie
animation scene isn’t as big as some people
might think. The same names keep coming
up over and over; they all know each other;
and most of them agree that there aren’t
that many opportunities to screen their
work. Also, a substantial number of them
have ‘day jobs’ to pay the bills. The concept
of funding simply doesn’t exist there and
this, combined with New York’s natural
rhythm, means that most of the films are
short, they crackle with a barely constrained
frenetic energy and they have a very
hands-on feel to their production values.
One of the first people I drafted into this
project was Signe Baumane8. We’ve shown
just about all of her films at MIAF and I
cross paths with her fairly regularly on the
circuit. Originally from Latvia, she lives in
New York and would have to be one of the
most connected and best known members
of the indie scene there. She curated a New
York program9 for the Leipzig festival last
year; she has the energy of any six people
you could nominate; and the sheer willpower of another half dozen on top of that.
Riding the lift up to her office/apartment,
the last thing I expected to hear her say was
that she was working on a feature. Rocks In
My Pocket is the title and an excerpt from it
is the obvious way to kick off the program
in style.
It’s pretty hard to discuss New York animation
without the name Bill Plympton coming
up. Bill is an original and presumably needs
little introduction to anybody reading this.
A force of nature, he holds the position of
grandmaster of the indie animation scene
in the big apple and has an instantly recognisable style. I knew this program would
miss its brief if there wasn’t a new Plympton
short in it and, as is often the way when the
gods decide to blow a tail wind for you and
turn all the lines on the boulevard green,
Bill offered up two really interesting works
that step outside of his regular style.
Firstly, Guard Dog10 made quite a splash in
2008 when it was released and even earned
Bill an Oscar nomination. Fast forward a
couple of years and Bill decides to invite
animators the world over to animate short
segments of the film in their own style.
About 70 different clips get edited together
and – shazam – a whole new version of the
film emerges as Guard Dog Global Jam in
Bill’s second piece was even more fascinating
and is the perfect addition to this program.
The Flying House is still a work-in-progress
and is an utterly fascinating project. For this
film, Bill has adapted and re-animated the
original artwork of a Winsor McCay film.
Winsor McCay11 is often credited with
creating the first auteur animated film,
Gertie The Dinosaur12, in 1914. Whether or
not the ‘first’ tag is an accurate one, there is
no doubt about his importance to the New
York comic art and animation scene in the
early twentieth century. As America was
dragged into the horrors of the first world
war, his 1918 animated documentary, The
Sinking Of The Lusitania13, contributed to
changing the minds of the American people
about their participation in that war. Three
years later, he created an animated film
called The Flying House14 based on his
comic strip Dream Of The Rarebit Fiend.
It is this film that Bill Plympton is recreating
using McCay’s artwork, maintaining the
look and feel of the original, with occasional
additions of colour and voice. To see these
two quintessential New Yorkers ‘collaborating’
on a film – masters of their form at opposite
ends of cinema’s century of existence – is a
wonderful treat.
Andy and Caroline London are two of the
coolest people I know – an essential drop-in
every time I pass through New York. Their
films The Back Brace15, The Lost Tribes Of
New York City16 and especially A Letter To Colleen17 all screened well
at previous MIAFs. The London’s have a way of chiselling a stonehard skeleton of bare, unbleached truths from which they hang the
sometimes pretty, sometimes torn fabrics of their films. When I last
sat down with them, they were most excited about making a series of
super short, sharp ‘upper cuts’, eschewing the fine art approach and
highlighting some truly cringe-worthy, utterly horrible moments in
Andy’s life. The resulting series of these 30-second ‘horror’ films is
still pouring off the press but we nabbed a few of the first Made You
Cringe episodes just to see what they’d look like.
Together, by David Sheahan18, was the best film that never screened
at the Ottawa festival last year. I kept hearing about it and people kept
asking me if I’d seen it. I hadn’t but the underground murmur about
it at Ottawa just kept coming. I was able to connect with Sheahan at a
coffee bar (just around the corner from Signe Baumane’s place as it
turns out), DVDs were passed over, promises were made and here we
are showing Together.
And speaking of the Ottawa festival, I came out of that gig last year
with some sure-fire bets for this program in the bag. LGFUAD, by
Kelsey Stark (a student at Pratt University, where Andy London
teaches), Q&A, by the Rauch brothers, and Something Left, Something
Taken, by Ru Kuwahata and Max Porter, were all New York films that
screened really well there. Sometimes this job is just too easy.
It was Signe who alerted me to the diverse joys of Divers, by Paris
Mavroidis, Accumulonimbus, by Andy Kennedy, and Down To The
Bone, by Peter Ahern. I had seen Divers before but hadn’t made the
New York connection. The other two filmmakers were news to me
and being introduced to their films was just another bonus of
bringing this program together.
I had wanted to learn more about abstract animation in New York
and I made a point of visiting the Film-Makers Cooperative19, an
organisation that has been supporting abstract and experimental
filmmakers for some fifty years. A remarkable organisation, they
threaded up film after film for me to watch. What I came away with
was a reminder of just how great Martha Colburn’s films20 are and
including her Triumph Of The Wild was an easy decision. The other
thing I came away with was a plan to show a ‘New York Film-Makers
Cooperative Fifty Year Showcase’ program at a future MIAF – you
heard it here first.
The Flying House USA, 7’31, 2011
DIRECTORS: Bill Plympton, Winsor McCay
A unique project that spans the history of New
York animation. Using original footage, the
grandmaster of the New York indie scene, Bill
Plympton, adapts and re-animates the 1921
Winsor McCay classic, The Flying House.
Made You Cringe
USA, 3’00, 2011
DIRECTORS: Andy London, Caroline London
Hot off the press! A series of brand new, decidedly
low-brow mini-episodes from the fertile minds of
the Londons.
USA, 4’15, 2009
DIRECTOR: David Sheahan
A turbo-charged, psychedelic, bug overload
that follows the highs and lows of a freaky little
collection of cockroaches.
USA, 4’22, 2010
DIRECTOR: Kelsey Stark
Ghosts just wanna have fun. An everlasting limbo
where death has no meaning.
Q&A USA, 4’00, 2009
DIRECTORS: Mike Rauch, Tim Rauch
Twelve-year-old Joshua Littman, who has
Asperger’s syndrome, interviews his mother Sarah
about everything from cockroaches to her feelings
about him as a kid.
You’re Outa Here USA, 3’37, 2009
DIRECTOR: George Griffin
A spunky descendant of Betty Boop tells her
no-good boyfriend to hit the road to the striding
rhythms of Fats Waller’s The Minor Drag, reinvented
as You’re Outa Here. A modern soundie.
Down To The Bone
USA, 4’00, 2009
DIRECTOR: Peter Ahern
Life just ain’t no good when you’ve had your skin
pulled off you.
Divers USA, 3’07, 2008
And closing things out are a couple of new films by well-established
animators who are intrinsically linked to the New York animation
scene. George Griffin21 has been a working animator for 40+ years
and has produced one of the most diverse and important bodies of
work by any American animator, past or present. Probably best
known for It’s An OK Life, Flying Fur and KoKo (the film he nominated
as his favourite when asked), his films often carry the cadences of
various creative movements that have found willing audiences in
New York over the years – everything from the avant-garde to others
influenced by various styles of jazz and the imperatives of commerce.
DIRECTOR: Paris Mavroidis
Free-form elegance and free-falling grace. An
experimental animation inspired by Busby Berkeley’s
mass gymnastics and experimental cinema from
the ’20s and ’30s.
John Dilworth22 is as New York as they come. Crazy and skilled in
equal measure, he has made TV cartoons that have shown on most
of the major networks, short indie films that have blitzed the international festival circuit and has had work shown in the Met, MOMA
NY and the Guggenheim. Probably his best known film is The Dirdy
Birdy23 but my hands-down fave Dilly film is the Dali-esque Life In
Transition24. In person, Dilworth really knows how to work a crowd
and a live presentation is always a moment to savour. His latest film,
Rinky Dink, carries on where Dirdy Birdy left off and is a nice way to
bring us right up to date with what’s going on in New York.
Something Left, Something Taken
USA, 4’33, 2010
DIRECTOR: Andy Kennedy
A meditation on motion and the life cycle of matter,
animated hands-on in soft clay on a spin cycle.
USA, 10’15, 2010
DIRECTORS: Ru Kuwahata, Max Porter
Everyone who enters a crime scene leaves something
behind and takes something away.
Guard Dog Global Jam USA, 5’26, 2010
DIRECTOR: Bill Plympton
Bill Plympton’s classic Guard Dog re-animated by a
small battalion of online contributors. A vast array
of techniques and styles but a ’Plymptoon’ down
to the core.
Triumph Of The Wild
Rocks In My Pockets (excerpt)
USA, 4’00, 2011 DIRECTOR: Signe Baumane
We’re feeling a bit lucky – a sneak preview of a
Signe Baumane feature, which is still in production.
Signe helped ALOT to put this program together
and she’s right in the middle of the New York indie
scene. Her new feature promises to be something
USA, 10’00, 2008
DIRECTOR: Martha Colburn
A searing exposé on American battles and the
impotence of man to face down the forces of nature.
Rinky Dink
USA, 4’41, 2009
DIRECTOR: John Dilworth
A decidedly post-modern fairy tale about a
princess who finds her decidedly post-modern
true love.
down Neubaugasse in Vienna (a street
which feels, for all the world, like a narrow version of Brunswick St, Melbourne
circa 2000), search out a door with a tiny
sign that reads, ‘sixpackfilm’, ring the
bell and … VOILA, enter a treasure
trove of Austrian experimental and
abstract film. Abstract Nirvana! Shelf
after shelf of DVDs, VHS tapes, a
climate-controlled room of 16mm and
35mm films, books, magazines, artwork.
Established in 1990, sixpackfilm is another
distributor that MIAF has featured pretty
much every year. Often, their films have
formed the backbone of our Abstract
Showcase and, always, their annual
package of submissions is one of our
postal highlights. Often challenging and
uncompromising, sixpackfilm titles are
at the forefront of the abstract and
experimental animation scene and this
program reaches back deep into their
archive to make that point.
To be sure, it’s a specialised taste, but if
this kind of filmmaking intrigues, inspires,
confounds and excites you as much as it
does me then you’ve just found a second
home. Sixpackfilm is just as energetic a
promoter of live-action shorts and
documentaries but it is their wondrous
roster of abstract and experimental
animators that always rings the bells
loudest at MIAF HQ.
The sixpackfilm catalogue (and subsequent
updates and supplements) records a
motherlode of the creative power of
cinema. Over the years, around 1,200
films have found their way into sixpackfilm vaults. The initial visit to their office
one (surprisingly) hot day was an almost
overwhelming experience. Surveying
shelf after shelf, rifling through the
library, talking to the sixpackfilm crew
and thumbing page after page of that
catalogue evoked a strange combination
of nostalgia, with a walk down memory
lane recalling a decade of stunning films
that MIAF had shown, and a sense of
dread at seeing a mountain burst forth
from beneath the floorboards signifying
the scale of the task, which was boiling
this colossal collection down to the tribute
program that we have before us now.
Various approaches were considered in
trying to arrive at the final line-up. A
program concentrating on key directors
and another focusing on the chronology
of sixpackfilm productions were both
One very significant idea that emerged was
a suggestion to consider a retrospective of
the works of Maria Lassnig1. Ultimately,
this wasn’t really the direction I wanted
to take this particular program in and,
although I don’t have any particular plans
to show this retrospective in the next couple
of years, her life and works are definitely
worth acknowledging and discussing.
Born in Carinthia (Austria) in 1919, Lassnig
was an extremely significant, although often
overlooked, pioneer of experimental filmmaking. An exhibiting artist for much of
her career, she began making films and
animated shorts in the early 1970s in New
York after taking an animation course at the
School of Visual Arts there. These films
carried on many of the themes of her
earlier artworks, including the changing
states of male/female relationships, alternative views of erotica, and explorations of the
way the female form was being depicted in
art. Her crude, often roughly crafted
animations were intriguing extensions of
her earlier artworks and helped cement her
place as a master of experimental film.
Sixpackfilm is clearly dedicated to ensuring
her legacy continues to be experienced and,
for me, being introduced to her works was
the most significant side-bar benefit to my
In the end, though, pulling together this
program came down to a good old-fashioned
curatorial slog – surveying back-years of
VHS tapes, re-reading notes from goodness
knows how many screenings at festivals and
galleries, trawling through a musty mental
suitcase of sadly faded, or inexplicably
enhanced, memories of individual titles,
and lots of consultations with sixpackfilm
staffers. The generosity of the team and the
passion for their task absolutely infuse this
program and – despite some stiff competition
for the crown – this was probably the most
enjoyable program to create for MIAF 2011.
A very big thank you to Maya McKechneay
and Gerald Weber, who have been so
supportive of MIAF over the years; and an
extra round of applause please for Dietmar
Schwärzler, who patiently shepherded me
through the sixpackfilm vault, introduced
me to the films of Maria Lassnig and
answered every question, replied to every
email and ultimately arranged the screening
material for us.
He also selflessly sat down for a Q&A to
help us understand the sixpackfilm story.
MIAF: Why was sixpackfilm established and
who were some of the key people who set it
Dietmar Schwarzler: The founding members
were Martin Arnold (filmmaker/artist),
Brigitta Burger-Utzer (managing director of
sixpackfilm), Alexander Horwath (director
of the Austrian Film Museum), Lisl Ponger
(filmmaker/artist) and Peter Tscherkassky
They recognised the need for a more stable
and proficient distribution outlet following
the phenomenal success, on the festival
circuit, of Pièce Touchée (a film by Martin
Arnold). Sixpackfilm soon expanded into
a distribution outlet and started also to
organise events.
MIAF: The term ‘experimental’ can be a
controversial one. How does sixpackfilm
define that term and how does it decide
which films to represent?
DS: Sixpackfilm has no definition for the
terms experimental film, avant-garde film
or artists’ film; all ‘categories’ are simply
workarounds for films that are non-narrative or simply unconventional. Nevertheless,
experimental films are probably those that
are closely connected to modern art. The
categorisation also helps to differentiate
these films from mainstream cinema.
For me personally, the term also has a
practical value, not an ideological one. The
films we represent, which also include
documentaries and (short) fiction, are
selected by an independent jury (six people
plus two members of sixpackfilm) and four
times a year people can submit their new
films, within these categories, for active
festival distribution.
MIAF: A lot of audiences are resistant to
ANYTHING non-narrative. How does
sixpackfilm work to break down those
DS: Films have to find their audience but
audiences also have to find their films. We
are not pedagogical in that sense. I found
my way to experimental film by simply
watching lots of artists’ films and dealing
with them.
Love can also appear or develop by simply
learning. It’s not that different to trying new
food. If you like the taste you’ll go for it. If
not, you keep away. The important thing is
that you get the chance to try.
One way to break down the barriers
(besides through festivals) is through
television. Another is by combining diverse
forms in a short-film program. We are
working on both approaches,
among others.
have also started to work with
figurative aspects or elements.
MIAF: What creative changes (if
any) do you think the rise of
computer animating has made to
the realm of experimental or
abstract animation?
The first reason they have this
influential status might be, of
course, the high quality of their
work. Another reason, quite
important as well, is that their
videos continually found their
way to festivals and alternative
cinema venues on a national and
international level. The
DIAGONALE – Festival for
Austrian Film (directed by
Christine Dollhofer and
Constantin Wulff) – built up
something like a platform for
abstract animation film at the
end of the 1990s and still shows
their work. Most of the artists
mentioned continually produced
videos because they knew they’d
find an audience at the festivals.
DS: Of course technologies had,
and still have, a huge impact on
the aesthetics as well as the
production possibilities. With
computers came the possibility
for artists to use the tools of
computer software for creating
their visual language or visual
form of expression. In the case
of the ‘Austrian Abstracts’, a label
that emerged at the end of the
1990s, artists like lia, Manuel
Knapp and Tina Frank also
created their own software
programs to make their videos.
Most of these artists are also
working in the field of graphic
design, studied at an art university and do have an educational
background in new media.
Actually, most of these videos go
along with the success of the
Viennese electronic music scene
at end of the 1990s, which also
developed an appetite for working
with computers.
MIAF: Could you highlight a couple
of the most influential experimental/abstract animators that
sixpackfilm has been involved
with and explain why they have
this status?
DS: The most successful animation films in our distribution
program (animation in the
classical sense) are Copy Shop
and Fast Film, both directed by
Virgil Widrich. Another very
important person in the animation field is Maria Lassnig,
although, like her paintings, her
animation films are not that well
known internationally. By the
way, Lassnig’s films have recently
been published on the dvd label
INDEX (www.index-dvd.at), a
joint venture between sixpackfilm and Medienwerkstatt Wien.
Maria Lassnig was also the
person who founded the studio
for experimental animation at
Vienna’s University for Applied
Art in 1982, during her professorship from 1980-1997. She had
lots of influence on artists like
Mara Mattuschka, Nana Swiczinsky, Bady Minck, among many
In the field of abstract animation,
artists like lia, Michaela Schwentner, Michaela Grill, Tina Frank,
Karø Goldt, Annja Krautgasser,
Manuel Knapp and Billy Roisz
are probably the most well
known, although most of them
MIAF: Are there some places
that have audiences more open
to abstract animation? And are
there some that are more closed
to it?
DS: The club and the music
scene might be one that is more
open to abstract animation film
than, say, classic short/feature
film festivals. Also, the audience
in cinematheques is normally
very open. Surprisingly, the
abstract video films find an
audience with kids and
teenagers, probably because of
their relationship to sound or
more broadly to the music video
MIAF: Does the future for
abstract animation seem strong?
DS: During the last few years, the
production output in that field
has been a bit less than before,
which seems to be a logical
thing. The abstract language
became something that is known
or re-known now.
As you know, abstract films were
made in the 1920s by filmmakers
such as Oskar Fischinger, Len
Lye, Walther Ruttmann, Viking
Eggeling, Hans Richter and others.
Also, in the field of video art
during the ‘60s and ‘70s, abstract
forms gained huge attention. It
looks like aesthetical and political
influences develop specific eras
with specific interests.
G.S.I.L VI / almada
AUSTRIA, 4’00, 2001
Though built around the music
of ‘@c’, this piece autonomously
explores the visual context of the
Can I Have 2 Minutes Of
Your Time?
AUSTRIA, 2’00, 2005
DIRECTOR: Brigitta Bodenauer
A cubist reinterpretation of the
forward movement of time (two
minutes to be precise) as depicted by
the progression of a clock’s hands.
AUSTRIA, 6’00, 2000
DIRECTOR: Michaela Schwentner
A visual staccato adventure, set to
short, choppy segments of noise
fragments, revealing the underlying
interface at which graphic and
acoustic elements have always overlapped.
Spatial Lines
AUSTRIA, 4’00, 2001
Imagery drawn from three continents
constantly change colour and format
and are deformed by the ‘planimetric’
animation process employed by
AUSTRIA, 2’00, 2000
DIRECTOR: Dariusz Kowalski
Superimposed horizontal and
vertical patterns in rich, dark
colours pursue Paul Virilio’s
‘nihilism of speed’.
AUSTRIA, 5’00, 2001
DIRECTOR: Maia Gusberti
Using a journey along electric
powerlines, the filmmaker creates an
essay on abstraction by subverting
simple, everyday perceptions.
AUSTRIA, 7’00, 2000
As in dreams (or the processes of
memory) various levels of thinking,
knowing and feeling fuse; they
intensify and transform into
mysterious symbols.
Paths Of G
notdef./version one
AUSTRIA, 1’30, 2006
DIRECTOR: Dietmar Offenhuber
A fragment of Kubrick’s Paths Of
Glory is rendered down to its most
elemental componants of dialogue
and imagery.
AUSTRIA, 4’00, 2000
DIRECTOR: Maia Gusberti
An intentional and focused exercise
in animating associations. Wild
geometric growth from the interior
of the machine.
Wieder Holung
AUSTRIA, 8’00, 1997
DIRECTOR: Nana Swiczinsky
A visceral, meandering nightmare
that oscillates between apocalyptical
fantasies and the commonplace. Part
documentary, part observational,
part alternative universe.
AUSTRIA, 5’00, 2000
A visually symbiotic relationship
with Ruckenwind – a piece of
experimental music from unique
Viennese electronica duo Shabotinski.
AUSTRIA, 5’00, 2004
DIRECTOR: Michaela Schwentner
Fractures in a soundscape are
accentuated on screen as various
tableaus are scanned, framed and
re-sequenced through windows of
varying dimensions.
AUSTRIA, 2’00, 2005
DIRECTOR: Tina Frank
The doors open on to a shimmering,
colourful space that is simultaneously an excess of colour, a frenzy of
perception and a pop carousel.
MIAF: What does the future for
sixpackfilm hold?
DS: We do hope only the best.
MIAF: We’ll drink to that!!
1. http://tiny.cc/p7f55
See also http://tiny.cc/jk8oa
notdef./version one
There has not been a single MIAF that
has not shown at least one film from the
Animate Project. Based in London,
Animate has been responsible for some
of the best and most important short
animated films to come out of the UK in
the last 20 years.
The Animate mission is to select, fund and
assist in producing six or more short
animated films annually. The emphasis is
on risk-taking, breaking new ground and
pushing the imagination of artists and
audiences alike. A project of this magnitude
can’t help but affect and alter the direction
of the artform and, as such, the body of
films contained within the Animate cache
stands as a substantial testament to what
contemporary animation is capable of
Its alumni is a virtual roll-call of British
animation royalty, rogues, mystics and
jesters. Phil Mulloy, Paul Bush, Run Wrake,
Ruth Lingford, Sarah Cox, Jonathan
Hodgeson, Tim Webb, Chris Shepherd,
Vera Neubauer, Tal Rosner, Kayla Parker
and the Quay Brothers are just a few of
the animators who have created films
under the Animate umbrella.
Animate has provided a platform for the
most experienced British animators to
experiment; for young animators to make
a vital transition up into the thinner air of
the animation elite; and for otherwise
shelved ideas to be given free rein and a
chance to live forever on the screen.
Animate’s director, Gary Thomas, takes up
the history, the importance and the future
of Animate ...
MIAF: What is Animate? When did it start
and how did it get started?
GARY THOMAS: Animate began in 1990 as
the ‘Animation Awards’ – a collaboration
conceived by David Curtis, then Artists’
Film and Video Officer at the Arts Council
of Great Britain, and Clare Kitson,
Commissioning Editor for Animation at
Channel 4. It was an open call for proposals
for experimental animated films for television
from UK animators and artists – both
established and emergent artists and for
animators working in the industry who
wanted to make personal projects. We
always commissioned the filmmakers, not
the producers.
MIAF: What, if anything, were the teething
problems with the Animate model?
GT: There had already been Arts Council/
Channel 4 schemes for artists’ film and
video, so the open call had been tried and
tested. An ongoing issue was that both
funding partners could only commit on a
year-by-year basis, and never at the same
time, but they did keep on re-committing.
For the first couple of years there were no
restrictions on length or production schedule.
It did have to become a bit less open over
the years though, mainly with a view to
getting a bit more prominence in the TV
schedule, and tighter schedules and fixed
film lengths (at a rough cut stage) were
MIAF: Dick Arnall took me under his wing
when I was starting out in this field. His
advice, guidance and encouragement had a
big impact on what I was able to achieve
until I learned to swim in the deep end by
myself. I owe him more than I can ever
explain and his sudden death was as big a
shock to me as it was to everybody else.
Could you explain Dick’s role in the history
of Animate?
GT: Dick was already something of an
animation legend as an animation producer
and because of the festivals he’d started.
He was Animate’s ‘independent production
advisor’. The Arts Council did the administration and Dick supported people in
making their films. He was there to help
realise visions and make the films the best
they could be.
He took a break for a couple of years then
from 2000 he took on a bigger role when
Animate was ‘outsourced’. By then,
Animate had become more than just its
films – there was a ‘critical mass’. I don’t
think it’s that it represents practice, there’s
other stuff going on, but I think it does
offer an indication of a particular approach.
Dick began promoting the films more and
we started to refer to Animate as a ‘project’,
not just the scheme. The commissions became AnimateTV; there was Animate Live –
events and programs with a range of partners – the National Portrait Gallery, music
festivals. Dick set up the Animate Award at
Encounters Festival in Bristol, the Animate
Residencies at the London College of
Communication, and built Animate’s first
website, animateonline.org, which had
information but no films. By this time, I
was Animate’s main man at the Arts Council
and, with Dick, we began to try and make
more connections with the visual arts world
and to talk about, and question – endlessly!
– what we were trying to do. The Animate!
Book: Rethinking Animation came out of that.
MIAF: It seems to me that Animate is one
of the very few film and animation organisations that has really nailed down how to
create a credible and worthwhile presence
on the web. Can you give an overview of
your history and experience with your web
GT: Thank you! We set up Animate Projects
following Dick’s unexpected death in 2007.
There was one round of AnimateTV commissions in production and another to get
started. Since Dick set up animateonline.org,
technology had moved on. We had commissioned nearly 100 films and it was our
priority to get the films digitised and online.
Animate makers retain ownership of their
films, so we had to get permission and there
were a couple of underlying rights we
couldn’t clear, but most of the AnimateTV
films are there in their entirety, free to view and
with background materials. We then started
doing interviews and commissioning essays.
It just seemed obvious to us that we had to
do this in this way. It’s all about the work.
And the important thing is that we show
the work in a context. It’s not like an
animation YouTube channel because
YouTube is that already – it’s a ‘space’.
Just as we used to commission for broadcast,
we now commission for online. The films
always have lives in other spaces – festivals,
cinemas, galleries – but they always exist
online too.
MIAF: (tongue in cheek) Dude, where’s my Oscar?
GT: When we announced back in January that we weren’t getting Arts
Council money we noted that Animate films had won awards, including
one British Academy Award and five BAFTA nominations. Someone
commented on our blog that one BAFTA didn’t seem much for 20
years, but that’s like asking why no avant-garde film has ever won an
Oscar for best picture! (Well, except Norman McLaren’s, which did win
an Oscar…) But the films really do get out there and get recognised in
all the right places! Animate films have won 11 British Animation
Awards over the years. And Apichatpong Weerasethakul, an Animate
director, won the Palme d’Or at Cannes for something we cocommissioned.
MIAF: How would you characterise the role that Animate has played in
supporting the auteur animation artform within the UK? And how would
you extrapolate that to the role Animate has played in promoting (or at
least showcasing) British animation talent to the world?
GT: Modesty forbids! But when we announced that we might have to
close, we were overwhelmed by messages of support. Animator Kayla
Parker said we’d “established a thriving community of practice – a new
space to engage with ideas about the animated moving image”; and
Chris O’Reilly, founder of Nexus Productions (and an Oscar nominee!),
noted that you can't have a cutting edge animation industry if you don't
support its practitioners’ most artistic endeavours, and that that has
been Animate’s role. I don’t think it’s a spectrum from the commercial
A to the experimental A – Aardman at one end and Animate at the
other – things are more fluid than that. Innovative animation happens
in all sorts of places – art, design, commercial contexts. Animate has
always aimed to be an interstitial organisation, working with artists
from a range of disciplines to make great art.
There used to be other support for other kinds of auteur animation:
Channel 4 had two other schemes and commissioned single films; there
was the BBC animation unit; and S4C in Wales. That’s all gone and it
seems bizarre to me that something the UK is so brilliant at, and for
which we’re internationally recognised, has been more or less abandoned.
As for promotion, that’s simply about how important it is that people
get to see the work. That was a key ambition in the first place – getting it
on television – and it’s why it’s important for us to respond to requests
around the world.
MIAF: Another observation is that many Animate films have a fairly
British-centric feel to them. Is this a fair observation?
GT: Unfair! AnimateTV was for UK-based people but that included
UK-based people from the USA, France, Norway, Japan, and Germany.
And of course the films often explore British themes but I don’t think
there’s a single Animate film that only a British audience would
MIAF: The stories we are hearing down here about the British arts and
film funding environment sound grim. I know Animate has been caught
in this but to what extent and what is your impression of what is
happening in the film funding realm?
GT: It is grim and there is a critical lack of strategy – Arts Council
England describes animation as a ‘sub-artform’ of the visual arts. When
the UK Film Council was shut down this year, the production team
moved to the British Film Institute so hopefully, now that is settling
down, they may be looking to do something for animation.
It doesn’t help that there isn’t really any co-ordinated lobbying. The
diversity of the ‘animation’ sector is its strength but it also means it
doesn’t have a voice. And frankly, we’re all much too modest. We need
to build an alliance and raise our voices.
Tad’s Nest
Feeling My Way
UK, 4’48, 2009
DIRECTOR: Petra Freeman
A gorgeous paint-on-glass work,
which takes us on an intriguing
journey to that oddest of all little
places where memories are invented.
UK, 5’32, 1997
DIRECTOR: Jonathan Hodgson
What goes around comes around:
the daily cycle of home-work-home
illuminated in collage, Hi-8 and
paint. A layered, luminous insight.
The Life Size Zoetrope
UK, 6’33, 2007
DIRECTOR: Mark Simon Hewis
The celebratory life story of one man
told via a one-take live-action shot of
a spinning, human zoetrope.
UK, 6’07, 2005
DIRECTOR: Damian Gascoigne
A seven-year-old girl escapes the
attentions of her over-protective
mother and flies off on an accidental
adventure through a surreal
The Emperor
UK, 4’20, 2001
DIRECTOR: Elizabeth Hobbs
A colourful tabloid tale of Bonaparte
and his not-so bony part as his pickled
organ goes under the auctioneer’s
UK, 6’30, 1994
DIRECTOR: Karen Kelly
Soft bodies, hard landings, tenement
times – living ain’t easy. Drawing
our own conclusions about the city.
UK, 8’30, 2005
The random justice of nature told
with curious images from a distant
childhood. When an idol is found in
the stomach of a rabbit, great riches
Dad’s Dead
UK, 6’36, 2002
DIRECTOR: Chris Shepherd
A compelling story of friendship
and denial told through a series of
ghostly reminiscences and visual
flashbacks from a young man’s
fragmented memory of the past.
Without You
UK, 4’50, 2008
DIRECTOR: Tal Rosner
A visual exploration of London’s
industrial suburbia following
colours and surfaces into abstraction
and revealing the complexity of
apparently simple forms.
What She Wants
UK, 5’00, 1994
DIRECTOR: Ruth Lingford
A woman travelling on the underground is be-devilled with images
of desire.
Sunset Strip
UK, 3’30, 1996
DIRECTOR: Kayla Parker
12-frame, half-second days and a
year of sunsets. Stan Brakhage-style
interventions directly onto filmstock in this recording of light and
cloud. Time-lapse goes transcendent.
3 Ways To Go
UK, 4’16, 1997
A trinity of techniques trace a trinity
of deaths to probe the mystery of the
final moments. Potent and disquieting
as it seeks answers to the great
Who I Am And What
I Want
UK, 7’23, 2005
DIRECTORS: Chris Shepherd,
David Shrigley
Some may say Who I Am and What
I Want is a snapshot of the human
condition. Others might think Pete
is just plain weird.
MIAF: What is the near-term future for Animate?
GT: We have Arts Council funding to keep us going until March 2012.
For our online exhibition program we’ve got some great work lined up
and there’ll be essays, interviews and some ‘off-line’ events. A strand of
the program – Digitalis – will explore, question, subvert or confound
our expectations of art and ‘the digital’. As part of that, we’ve got the
Animate OPEN, an online exhibition selected from an open call
(though UK only this first time), and there’ll be some small-scale
commissions, supported by the Jerwood Charitable Foundation.
The question is how we carry on beyond this year? We haven’t got an
answer to that yet but the search continues.
Dad’s Dead
What She Wants
Three Ways To Go
Who I Am And What I Want
French Artistic Director Christian Janicot invited 12 of the finest
contemporary illustrators and artists working in cartoons, the
publishing industry and the press to team up with one hundred
student directors from the prestigious Supinfocom school of animation
to find out how their 2D artistic styles would come to life – in moving
3D images!
Entitled Le Laboratoire d’Images, together they have created 12 original
3D short films and have set the benchmark for the creative arts of
tomorrow. And I decided to show the lot as a stand-alone program.
Somehow, it just seemed like the right thing to do. It fitted in nicely with
the Supinfocom Is Back! program that I was working on at the same
time and, besides, I couldn’t choose which ones to leave out.
The designers were an integral part of this project and give each film
that extra dimension.
Killoffer (Apres Moi) was a co-founder of French independent comic
publisher L’Association. He is published regularly in a wide range of
magazines including Lapin and he has received multiple nominations
for awards in the Angoulême International Comics Festival
Tchikioto (Cosmic Jungle) revels in creating ambiguity and exploring
Speedy Graphito (Evasion) is one of the early pioneers of the French
street art movement and is regarded as one of the greats, rating beside
Keith Haring, Jerome Mesnager and Miss Tic.
Jean-Francois Martin (L’Inventeur) is a prolific graphic designer who
blends a kind of chic 60s aesthetic with splashes of avant-garde poster art.
Lisa Lugrin and Clement Xavier (Modern Spleen) are recent graduates
of l’École Européenne Supérieure de l’Image and are co-founders of the
comic strip association ‘NA’.
Henning Wagenbreth (Moskito Bravo) is a prolific and bold illustrator
probably best known for Cry For Help, a collection of drawings exploring
36 scam emails from Africa.
Les Jeanclode (Puppet Mansion) is a French collective of three
illustrators (Nicolas, Mathieu and Sebastien), which collaboratively
develop creative and commercial projects.
Guillaume Plantevin (Rubika) is an established 2D artist who created
the original idea and entire universe for this film.
Alexios Tjoyas (Tattoo XXL) is a graphic designer who uses tribal
African motifs.
Placid (T Ou?) has been described as ‘Picasso on acid’. He was the artistic
director of the publishing house Le Dernier Terrain Vague from 1988 to
1996 and the magazine Omnibus from 1991 to 2000.
Rocco (Le Fantome De L’Apero) contributed the whimsical skeleton
characters to this film.
Muzo (Muzorama) aka Jean-Philippe Masson, is a slightly mysterious
figure who some don’t believe actually exists.
Apres Moi
Puppet Mansion
FRANCE, 4’17, 2010
DIRECTORS: Paul Emile Boucher,
Thomas Bozovic, Madeleine
Charruaud, Dorianne Fibleuil,
Benjamin Flouw, Mickael
Riciotti, Antoine Robert
The stuff of nightmares. An ocean of
silent, screaming heads breaking out
from under every hiding place.
FRANCE, 4’09, 2010
DIRECTORS: David Lacaille,
Vivian Ebran, Julien Geraert,
Victoria Jardine
A true tunnel-of-horrors ride
complete with scary monsters, a
frenzy of near misses and a poke in
the eye with a sharp tentacle.
Cosmic Jungle
FRANCE, 3’58, 2010
DIRECTORS: Claire Baudean,
Ludovic Habas, Mickael Krebs,
Julien Legay, Chao Ma, Florent
Rousseau, Caroline Roux,
Margaux Vaxelaire
A horizontal plunge into a vertical
city. Expect diagonal obstacles.
FRANCE, 5’28, 2010
DIRECTORS: Marie Ayme, Martin
Brunet, Alexandre Cazals,
Sebastien de Oliveira Bispo,
Fabrice Fiteni, Mathieu Garcia,
Alexandre Vial
Marching FBI, manic nipple dispensers,
very frustrated traffic cops – an
urban jungle with a twist (but dogs
still love the hydrants).
FRANCE, 4’10, 2010
DIRECTORS: Remy Dupont,
Gaspard Roche, Paulin Cointot,
Paul Emile Boucher, Benjamin
Flouw, Antoine Roberts
A mystical tale of urban escape with
the style and aesthetic of street art
ground into its DNA.
FRANCE, 4’38, 2010
DIRECTORS: Gary Fouchy,
Jeremy Guerrieri, Paul Jaulmes,
Nicolas Leroy, Leslie Martin,
Maud Sertour, Alexandre
Every problem has a solution. Every
solution creates a new problem.
Modern Spleen
FRANCE, 4’07, 2010
DIRECTORS: Yohann AurouxBernard, Romain Borrel, Paulin
Cointot, Boris Croise, Nicolas
Loudot, Benjamin Rabaste,
Gaspard Roche, Yoan Sender
An armadillo, a whale, a sock
centipede, a table with a tail, a
moustache forest and an electrical
Moskito Bravo
FRANCE, 3’56, 2010
DIRECTORS: Alexandre Cuegniet,
Paul Serrell, Emeline Chan Kam
Shu, Sarah Sutter
It takes all kinds of villages! Even
this psychotic, psychedelic, fully
whacked, 2D village of shoplifters,
crazed space travellers and coloured
amoeba explorers.
Tattoo XXL
FRANCE, 3’40, 2010
DIRECTORS: Loris Accaries,
Guillaume Cunis, Remy Dupont,
Gael Falzowski, Arnaud Janvier,
Audrey Janvier, Vincent Tonelli
A bizarrely re-imagined urban
landscape from the depths of a
wondrous imagination.
T Ou?
FRANCE, 3’53, 2010
DIRECTORS: Amaury Brunet,
Victoria Bruneel, Ingrid Menet,
Celine Seille
The multiple distraction of screens,
the unexpected sounds that escape
headphones, a bad moment at an
ATM, a worse moment in the
chicken-coop office.
Le Fantome De L’Apero
FRANCE, 4’34, 2009
DIRECTORS: Paul Alexandre,
Tolga Ari, Pierre Chomarat,
David Dangin, Mathieu Hassan,
Hadrien Ledieu, Nicolas Malovec,
Thea Matland
A skeleton goes live, gets lucky, loses
a foot and kills the girl.
FRANCE, 3’15, 2009
DIRECTORS: Elsa Brehin,
Raphael Calamote, Mauro Carraro,
Maxime Cazaux, Emilien Davaud,
Laurent Monneron, Axel Tillement
An utterly ingenious display of
meta-creative perspective reinvention.
Tatoo XXL
Apres Moi
Cosmic Jungle
Sky Song
ESTONIA, 45’00, 2010
ANIMATION: Mart Kivi, Marili Toome,
Andreas Tenusaar, Raivo Mollits,
Villem Tammaru
EDITORS: Urmas Joemees, Mati Kutt
MUSIC: Tonu Korvits
SOUND: Horret Kuus
An ode for all those who like to fly. Is it
possible to reach the moon in one
breath? It is if you have the will to fly and
the right training, as Postman Rain
discovers. A film gloriously saturated
with symbolism, surreal imagery and
characters drawn from the century that
made us what we are.
MIAF wouldn’t be MIAF without a
piece of the annual schedule devoted
to Estonian animation. Estonia sits as
a unique contributor to the field of
animation. The vast majority of
Estonian works come from either the
Joonisfilm Studio, which tends to
focus on drawn works and is home
to grandmaster Priit Parn; or
Nukufilm, which has specialised in
creating benchmark puppet animation for more than fifty years.
Nukufilm is an utterly inspiring place to
visit. Housed in a huge, ex-Soviet-era
bank-cum-sock factory (complete with a
labyrinth of barred cells in the basement), it
houses a family of artists engaged in making
the puppets, drawing the storyboards, crafting exquisite and often vast puppet film sets
and, of course, animating these gloriously
confounding imaginary worlds, one frame
at a time.
The latest film to be set loose on an unsuspecting world from this warm cauldron of
alternative realities is Taevalaul (Sky Song),
by Mati Kutt.
Mati Kutt
D.O.B:APRIL 5TH 1947
Much Estonian animation addresses issue
of ‘place’; often looking to explore, albeit in
fairly abstract ways, where Estonia might
fit into the various incarnations of the
world that have blanketed it. This sense of
changing geography under ones feet or the
inquiry into an undefined, alternative
geography that might be interested ‘out
there’ somewhere is the fine gauze cloth
that covers the tabletops that many
Estonian animated tales sit on.
Kutt’s classic 1992 opus, the 23-minute The
Smoked Spratt Baking In The Sun, unpacked
this theme in an underwater environment.
Inverting the norm by positioning a fisherman
as a resident of the undersea world, much
of the film depicted his efforts to understand
why his environment had become so
degraded and his desire to pursue the
impossible task of leaving it.
Some of Kutt’s subsequent films, particularly
Institute Of Dreams (2006), have expanded
those notions of the ethereal search into
the realm of space and the night sky. To
some extent, these themes are intriguingly
depicted with the ‘focused roaming’ of a
postman who wants to learn how to fly to
the moon.
This sense of pure myth underpins the feel
of the film but lest the magical carpet ride
is too smooth and easy to absorb, Kutt
encourages us to keep our seatbelts fastened
and our eyes front and forward with a
constant, gentle buffeting turbulence of
historical and creative symbolism.
Kutt himself rarely discusses the creative
and narrative essences of his films. He
gently, but firmly, declined to take part in
a Q&A for this article. It helps, I think, to
know something about the underlying
themes of Estonian animation over the
years but his films have always been works
that allow people ALOT of room to pull up
a seat, take in the sweeping panoramic
view and lay their own experiences and
interpretations over the joyously, perplexing
Goodbye Mister Christie
UK, 89’00, 2010
DIRECTOR: Phil Mulloy
PRODUCER: Spectre Films
We don’t show many features at
MIAF. But this is Phil Mulloy!! His
short films (particularly the Intolerance Trilogy) have been some of the
most unique and acerbic inclusions
in our programs and have won Best
of Fest awards in years gone by.
MIAF: You are often described as the enfant
terrible of British animation. I do it myself
when I can’t come up with a more original
description. I’ve seen you laugh this off and
I’ve seen you react more forcefully to it. How
are you feeling about that title these days?
Phil was ill the week they were doing
‘Compromise 101’ at film school and
his films are all the better for it. And,
it would be fair to say, he’s never
been a slave to the notion of fine art.
His films are often (in fact, normally)
a gut-punch delivered with a paint
brush. They hold up a sort of pseudomirror that somehow reflects where
we might be about to go (typically
some version of hell). And they are
made by a man in a hurry. These
images burst from the screen in
much the same way as they were
probably thrown down on the page in
the first place. They can be ugly and
actually quite nice. Recently I was called
‘brilliant’ and ‘rubbish’ for the same film.
For his feature, Phil has parked his
brushes and plugged in a tablet. The
look has changed a bit, so has the
pacing, even some of the anger has
been given a backseat but that
strange mirror his films put in front
of us is still in our face. The Christies
feel like ’un-people’ and they live in
a world where talk is cheap, friends
aren’t really friends and nothing that
anybody says seems definitive or
important. Sound familiar?
Phil very kindly took some time out
to answer some questions about his
latest film, the path to making features, and pompous monumentality.
PHIL MULLOY: To be called anything is
MIAF: What was the motivation for moving
from short films to feature-length films?
PM: When times get tough and films get
harder to make some people stop making
films. My films get longer. It’s a matter of the
MIAF: Your earlier short films have such a
strong ’hand-painted’ ethos to them. To me,
that’s where part of their sheer power come
from. What was it like to move into using a
PM: I have always tried to do my drawings
as quickly and in as unconsidered way as
possible. Losing control allows for the things
you didn’t anticipate to happen. The
computer allowed me to do things even
more quickly. Now I manage to do hardly
any drawing at all. And anyway, you can
always access other people’s drawings on the
internet and use those.
MIAF: The first time I saw Goodbye Mister
Christie was at the London International
Animation Festival. Your introduction that
night, to my mind, was one of the most
honest introductions I’d heard in a while. You
spoke less about the art and content of your
film and more about your desire to work fast,
to get the images out there, to get the voices
speaking. Is that a fair enough assessment?
PM: Yes, working in the way I did with that
film allowed me to work very quickly. I shot
that film, the first part of The Christie
Trilogy, in a year and am now finishing the
second part. That has taken me another year.
Of course I don’t just work for speed’s sake.
Working quickly allows me to work through
ideas and not get so precious about everything. I can try things out, afford to make
mistakes. If things fail, so what? Move on.
This may sound very cavalierish, but of
course everything I do is intensely important
to me. It’s a balancing act between caring
and not caring, between being brilliant and
being rubbish.
"If Disney is
animation's heart,
then British
animator Phil Mulloy
is its bowels.
Or maybe it’s the
other way round?"
Chris Robinson, Artistic Director, Ottawa
International Animation Festival.
MIAF: The ‘energy’ level inherent in Goodbye
Mister Christie (and in your previous feature
The Christies) seems virtually the inverse to
that in most of your short films. Is this how
you see it and, if so, is that a conscious
decision; something that is fundamental to
the longer feature-film length; a progression
of your filmmaking style; all of the above;
none of the above?
PM: I have always liked the pacing of Robert
Bresson’s films. Bizarrely, I was thinking of
him when making The Christies. I was also
thinking of the Canadian experimental
filmmaker Michael Snow and a particular
film by him called Back and Forth, mainly for
the movement of the camera. Both these
filmmakers could be said to pace things
slowly. I also tend to have the music in my
head as I am making the film. The music
(more sound than music) for The Christies
was to be slow to give the film a monumental
feel. To me the contradiction between cheap,
simple means to create an image that is
pompously monumental is attractive.
Needless to say, The Christies should really be
seen in an Imax theatre.
MIAF: What are the similarities and
differences between Goodbye Mister Christie
and its predecessor The Christies?
PM: I began making The Christies as a series
“One of the most
pieces of
freakery I’ve seen in
a good long while”.
A certain Richard who probably doesn’t
want his name splashed through the MIAF
and then put all the bits together at the end
to create a feature-length film. In some
respects this was not very satisfactory. With
Goodbye Mister Christie, I set out to write a
feature. However, I did not write a script. The
film was written as I was making it. Why?
Because while making it, I never knew what
the next scene would be or where it would
lead. For me this was exciting. Illustrating a
piece of writing with a beginning, middle
and end would have been dull. My own
pleasure creating is paramount.
MIAF: The dialogue in The Christies is a vital
and unusual element of the film. How was
this dialogue arrived at and what drew you
towards creating a film with these voices?
PM: I became interested in computer-
generated voices around 2000 and, in fact,
made two shorts with the animator Paul
Bush using the voices. They were really quite
primitive and robotic. A couple of years later,
I went back to the internet to see if the voices
had progressed. They had. Now they were
almost human. I began playing around
writing dialogues, made a six-minute film,
became interested in the characters and now,
over five years later, I am still interested in
these same characters.
I work in this fashion – I write a scene of
dialogue, then shoot the scene, then write the
next scene, then shoot the scene, etc. After a
few scenes, I go back and readjust things if
I have to. The whole process is really quite
simple and of course everything is quite
literally at my fingertips.
MIAF: What is the future for Phil Mulloy
short films?
PM: When I finish the trilogy, no doubt I
will make some short films again. At any rate
I will be playing around with ideas and
imagery in some fashion.
MIAF: There are plans for a third Christies
PM: I have two more films to make in The
Christies Trilogy. Right now I am completing
the second. I will be laying the sound track in
about a month. I hope to begin part three in
MIAF: Which gives me all the reason I need
to get to London in August!
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Death Of An Insect, The
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Down To The Bone
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Drop Out
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Flat Hatting
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Flying House, The
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Freud, Fish And Butterfly
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Get Real!
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Gibbon's Island (Wyspa
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Eagleman Stag, The
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Emperor, The
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Enter The Lovely
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Philip Hofmanner (22)
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External World, The
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Gloaming, The
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Goodbye Mister Christie
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Time Ripples In Sense
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To Swallow A Toad
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Valmay The Visitor From
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Who I Am And What I
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Who Would Have
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Down To The Bone (76)
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The Wendy-Lady (48)
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Mem (40);
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Hambuster (32);
Le Fantome De L'Apero
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Without You
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Animation History of
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White Hair
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Rocks In My Pockets
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Can I Have 2 Minutes Of
Your Time? (78)
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The Squirrel And The
Swallow (De Eekhoorn
En De Zwallow) (41)
Boisson, Charlotte
Get Out (39)
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Who Would Have
Thought? (Kto By Pomyslal?) (67)
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City Trip (Reis Door de
Stad) (54)
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Tom Sito Hello (71)
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Apres Moi (81)
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Sleep (Schlaf) (19)
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Muzorama (81)
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Mem (40); Loom (40)
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T Ou? (81)
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Against The Grain (59)
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T Ou? (81)
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A Kaffa (32)
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Cosmic Jungle (81)
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Calamote, Raphael
Matatoro (32);
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The Crocodile's Wife (59)
Candeland, Pete
Gorillaz: On Melancholy
Hill (42)
Cline, Caryn
Seattle Solstice (27)
Candlish-Wilson, Jono
Judgement Day (42)
Cointot, Paulin
Evasion (81); Modern
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Cannon, Robert
Madeline (71);
The Jaywalker (71);
The Wonder Gloves (71);
Christopher Crumpet (71);
Brotherhood Of Man (71);
Gerald McBoing Boing
(71); Fudget's Budget (71)
Colburn, Martha
Triumph Of The Wild (76)
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Vie D'Enfer (21)
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Susurrus (27)
Carraro, Mauro
Matatoro (32);
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Cox, Sarah
3 Ways To Go (80)
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A Kaffa (32)
Casale, Lucie
Split (31)
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Botanica Liberta (32)
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Attack and Release (59)
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Un Petit Bol D'Air (23)
Cauwe, Jerome
Hot Car And Crazy Coyote
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Cosmic Jungle (81)
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Comrie, Stewart
Battenberg (23)
Conil, Frederic
Botanica Liberta (32)
Croise, Boris
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Cuegniet, Alexandre
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Cunis, Guillaume
Tattoo XXL (81)
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Das Tub
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Love Patate (29)
Czapla, Zbigniew
The Ritual (Rytual) (67)
Dalwood, Fiona
The Batchelor Experience
Cazaux, Maxime
Hambuster (32); Muzorama (81)
Dangin, David
Slim Time (31);
Le Fantome De L'Apero
Cechowski, Tomasz
Thesis (36)
Daubas, Julien
Jean-Luc (37)
Chan Kam Shu, Emeline
Moskito Bravo (81)
Davaud, Emilien
D'Une Rare Crudite (32);
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Chang, Shu-Wei
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Charruaud, Madeleine
Apres Moi (81)
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Escape His Stare
(M'echapper De Son
Regard) (23)
Chen, Sam
Amazonia (40, 41)
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Mad Dogs And
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Dawson, Deb
Ray Condo's Crazy Mixed
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de Beijer, Evert
Get Real! (17)
de Oliveira Bispo,
Cosmic Jungle (81)
de Paepe, Jade
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De Preval, Yann
Meet Buck (31)
Delacharlery, Antoine
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Hambuster (32)
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43 (27)
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Press + (27, 48)
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Strips (28)
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Be Quiet, Kind, And Gentle
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Time Ripples In Sense
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Rendezvous With A Dead
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Apres Moi (81); Evasion
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Gorillaz: On Melancholy
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Nothing Happened Today
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Valmay The Visitor From
Beep Beep Beep
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The Rooster, The
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Janvier, Audrey
Tattoo XXL (81)
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Cat In, Dog Out (59)
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Flash (59)
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Wisdom Teeth (19)
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Le Fantome De L'Apero
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Tad's Nest (80)
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The Undertaker And The
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Mem (40); Loom (40)
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Amar (17)
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Bob (42)
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The Ticker Talks (74)
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The Girl And The Hunter
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When I Am King (42)
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Vie D'Enfer (21)
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Leroy, Nicolas
L'Inventeur (81)
Hazenak, Emma
City Trip (Reis Door de
Stad) (54)
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EAM 2009 Masterclass
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You're Outa Here (76)
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Inner View (28)
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Wish You Rocked My
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Jobczyk, Andrzej
Superstring (Superstruna)
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Hell Bent For Election (71)
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Wrong (74)
Kaayk, Floris
The Origin Of Creatures
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The Emperor (80)
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SunDay (59)
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Feeling My Way (80)
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Secret Bee (16)
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Evermore (22)
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Life Forms (42)
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Old Fangs (54)
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Attack and Release (59)
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Ooh La La (42)
Huang, Chung-Yu
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Egoli (74); Stressed (80)
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Paperman (55)
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Rooty Toot Toot (71); Flat
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Green Money Weed Connection: "Got Milk" (37)
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Zero (48)
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Ballet Of Unhatched
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L'Inventeur (81)
Hurtz, William T.
Bringing Up Mother (71);
The Unicorn In The Garden (71); Hotsy Footsy (72)
Fels, Verena
Mobile (40,41)
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Jean-Luc (37)
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Vie D'Enfer (21)
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Aleksandr (32)
Fibleuil, Dorianne
Apres Moi (81)
Gusberti, Maia
.airE (78); notdef./version
one (78)
Hyer, Zach
Correspondence (59)
Kohen, Abel
Split (31)
Hyerneaux, Maxence
Split (31)
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Exit (67); The Razor
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Cosmic Jungle (81)
Guthrie, Gerald
The Necessities Of Life
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Suiren (40)
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Unterwerk (78)
Kranot, Michal
White Tape (20)
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White Tape (20)
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To Swallow A Toad (17)
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Rubika (81)
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Millhaven (67)
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Machination 84 (27);
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Un Tour De Manege (40)
Lin, Hsiao-Yun
Switch (59)
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Little Deaths (25); What
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Sky Song (Taevalaul) (85)
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Zhen (58)
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Something Left,
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The Collagist (34)
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Puppet Mansion (81)
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Let There Be Sound (54)
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Who Dares? (59)
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L'Atelier Collectif
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Circle Jerk: I Heart NY
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Le Fantome De L'Apero
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Armour For A Boy (42)
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(Ego) (55)
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Made You Cringe (76)
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Made You Cringe (76)
Losito, Francoise
Un Tour De Manege (40)
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Polo's Robot (50)
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The Gradual Demise Of
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Route 66 (59)
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Botanica Liberta (32);
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Nuit Blanche (39)
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Mr Choco In Love (37)
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The Accident (54)
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Dry Fish (17)
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A Kaffa (32)
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L'Inventeur (81)
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Jeannine M. (35)
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The Tell-Tale Heart (71)
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Goodbye Mister Christie
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rewind (78)
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Circle Jerk: I Heart NY
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Paths Of Hate (21,66)
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Remembering Bonegilla
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Dukes Of Broxstonia:
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Dukes Of Broxstonia:
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Sorry Film Not Ready (54)
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Wieder Holung (78)
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Q&A (76)
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The Yarwood Trail (28)
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Szymczak, Marion
D'Une Rare Crudite (32)
Reinarz, Tristan
Get Out (39)
Schwentner, Michaela
Transistor (78); Tester (78)
Reinhard, Sophie
Post-War Era
(Nachkriegszeit) (55)
Scribner, Rod
The Lost Duchess (71)
Rheaume, Daniel
Hill 22 "Smoke 'Em If Ya
Got 'Em" (54)
Riba, Marc
The Twin Girls Of Sunset
Street (Les Bessones
Del Carrer de Ponent) (17)
Ribeiro, Jose Miguel
Journey To Cape Verde
(Viagem A Cabo Verde)
Sender, Yoan
Modern Spleen (81)
Talbot-Kelly, Matthew
The Trembling Veil Of
Bones (25)
Serrell, Paul
Moskito Bravo (81)
Sertour, Maud
L'Inventeur (81)
Seynhaeve, Louise
Aleksandr (32)
Riciotti, Mickael
Apres Moi (81)
Sheahan, David
Together! (76)
Ritterskamp, Ian
Arts And Crafts
Spectacular #1 (36)
Shepherd, Chris
Dad's Dead (80);
Who I Am And What I
Want (80)
Robert, Antoine
Apres Moi (81); Evasion
Shim, Beomsik 'Shimbe'
The Wonder Hospital (40)
Peters, Scott
Jumping Puddles (54)
Roche, Gaspard
Evasion (81); Modern
Spleen (81)
Shrigley, David
Who I Am And What I
Want (80)
Petrissans, Thibault
Noises (Les Bruits) (54)
Rodic, Aleksandar
Origin Of Mass (42)
Pintoff, Ernest
Blues Pattern (71)
Rohleder, Sonja
Tanto Tanto (58)
Simard, Elise
The Crossing (La Treversee) (19); As Above, So
Below (28)
Please, Michael
The Eagleman Stag (58)
Rohner, Monika
Perspective (54)
Simon, Christoph
Hello Dad (36,74)
Plucinska, Izabela
Josette Und Ihr Papa (21)
Romanowsky, Tim
Peanuts (35)
Sito, Tom
Tom Sito Hello (71)
Plympton, Bill
Guard Dog Global Jam
(21,76); The Flying House
Rood, Sjaak
Fast Forward Little Red
Riding Hood (21)
Siwinski, Tomasz
Television (Telewizor) (67)
O'Connor, Katy
I Love You (54)
Polak, Kamil
The Lost Town Of Switez
Nguyen, Mai
Un Tour De Manege (40)
Nivet, Paul
Jean-Luc (37)
The Gloaming (23)
Norstein, Yuri
The Hedgehog In The Fog
Obertova, Veronika
Viliam (35)
Offenhuber, Dietmar
Paths Of G (78)
Oh, Erick
Heart (25)
O'Hare, Sam
The Sandpit (40)
Rosner, Tal
Without You (80)
t Hooft, Albert
Little Quentin (19)
Takeda, Yuka
White Hair (16,58)
Shmelkov, Leonid
Dog-walking Ground (58)
Petegnief, Marion
Chernokids (22)
Seille, Celine
T Ou? (81)
Roche, Fanny
Get Out (39)
Ngoc, Piotr Hoang
Python In Wonderland
(Pyton W Krainie Czarow)
Sutter, Sarah
Moskito Bravo (81)
Skibinski, John
Lizard (41)
Taylor, Isobelle
Pieced Together (59)
Templeton, Suzie
Dog (74)
Tey, Ting Chian
Bridge (59)
Thibault, Thomas
Telegraphics (32)
Tillement, Axel
Muzorama (81)
Spatial Lines (78)
_relifted (78)
Tonelli, Vincent
Tattoo XXL (81)
Toste, Joana
R-XYZ (54)
Toufaili, Alexandre
L'Inventeur (81)
My Mother's Coat (58)
Vaara, Jari
Birthday (23)
Valley, Rob
Gorillaz: On Melancholy
Hill (42)
van Cuijlenborg, Oerd
An Abstract Day (28)
Rousseau, Florent
Rubika (81)
Skrobecki, Marek
Danny Boy (66);
Ichthys (67)
Pollefoort, Johan
The Dance Of Death
(Au Bal Des Pendus) (37)
Roux, Caroline
Rubika (81)
Sloggett, Alexander N.
The Bacchae (59)
Vartiainen, Hannes
The Death Of An Insect
(Eraan Hyonteisen Tuho)
Porter, Max
Something Left,
Something Taken (76)
Rowe, Daniel
Travis (37)
Socha, Michal
The Chick (67)
Vaxelaire, Margaux
Rubika (81)
Ryan, Marco
Clockwork Gentleman
Solanas, Anna
The Twin Girls Of Sunset
Street (Les Bessones Del
Carrer de Ponent) (17)
Veikkolainen, Pekka
The Death Of An Insect
(Eraan Hyonteisen Tuho)
O'Keefe, Chris
Against The Grain (59)
Powell, Aaron
The Gradual Demise Of
Phillipa Finch (51)
Olshvang, Valentin
Last Night's Rain (So Vechora Dozhdik) (29)
Prendergast, Darcy
Gravity (50)
Sousa, Vincent E.
Meet Buck (31)
Verschoore, Evelyn
Memee (25)
Prins, Daniel Oliveira
City Trip (Reis Door de
Stad) (54)
Spilsbury, Seamus
Blown Away (55)
Vial, Alexandre
Cosmic Jungle (81)
Stark, Kelsey
Vink, Paco
Little Quentin (19)
Ong, Stephen
When Humans Ruled The
Earth (54)
Wada, Atsushi
In A Pig's Eye (Wakaranai
Buta) (18)
Wang, Haiyang
Freud, Fish And Butterfly
Warsta, Lauri
Traumdeutung (58)
Wehrle, Nina
The Smaller Room (Der
Kleinere Raum) (16)
Weifu, Harry Zhuang
Contained (54)
Weiguo, Henry Zhuang
Contained (54)
Weiner, Kimberly
Perista (58)
Welchman, Michael
Armour For A Boy (42)
Whitney, John
Blues Pattern (71)
Wolf, Sebastien
Arts And Crafts
Spectacular #1 (36)
Woloshen, Steven
Fiesta Brava (28)
Wrake, Run
Rabbit (80)
Wuhr, Stefan J.
Let There Be Sound (54)
Yoon, Ihsu
The Light (59)
Zhang, Simin
Bob And Dog (58)
Zhang, Xu-Zhan
ReNew: The Future Not
Future (58)
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