Credit: Young Juvenile Youth “Animation”, Akihiko Taniguchi
The nearly 1,200 entries submitted for prize consideration to the Prix Ars Electronica’s Animation category this year posed a substantial quantitative challenge to both the organizational staff and the jurors: Anezka Sebek (ID/US), Réka Bucsi (HU), Sabine Hirtes (DE), Shuzo John Shiota (JP) and Memo Akten (TR/UK). An elaborate round of preliminary screenings involving the jurors as well as the Animation Festival curators, Jürgen Hagler and Christine Schöpf, succeeded in reducing the field to a manageable level. The outcome was a rather short list of 212 films that were screened by the jury. These also form the basis of the eight themed programs in this year’s Animation Festival.
Conceptually, technologically, formally and substantively, the works submitted to the Prix this year cover the entire fascinating spectrum of what computer animation is and does today. Impressive above all are the works that also demonstrate alternative presentation possibilities, those that somewhat loosen the bonds of a cinematic narrative’s screen-based nature. Large-format mappings—whether open-air or in the context of a museum—have become significant factors in the artistic event realm. Installations as well as performance projects are expanding long-prevailing concepts of what constitutes computer animation. Due to technologies that are now more affordable than ever, VR has become a new field for artists. And gaming, a hybrid at the nexus of art and play—as this year’s Golden Nica winner David O’Reilly demonstrates in Everything—is another step in opening up this genre to media art.
The seventeen programs on the lineup of this year’s Ars Electronica Animation Festival are once again an international showcase of excellence in current digital filmmaking.
In addition to the eight themed programs, other exciting other screenings will be shown: a Young Animations lineup, two IN PERSONA screenings: IN PERSONA: Job, Joris & Marieke and IN PERSONA: Max Hattler; an Electronic Theatre screening, an Animation Revisited: Digital Media, Hagenberg Campus program, and the guest programs featuring works honored by the Japan Media Arts Festival, the Campus Genius Award, the ISCA (International Students Creative Award) and works selected by the Filmakademie’s Animationsinstitut and ACM Siggraph. The Expanded Animation symposium explores current artistic and theoretical positions surrounding the topic of animation.
Curation and text: Christine Schöpf, Jürgen Hagler
Divisional Articulation, Max Hattler
In Persona: Max Hattler
Max Hattler is an animation filmmaker, media artist and professor at City University Hong Kong. His works often contain allusions to early modernism in animation filmmaking and the cinematic avant-garde as well as in the visual arts—Oskar Fischinger’s dance of colors and forms, James Whitney’s early mandala computer animation, Augustin Lesage’s highly charged, spiritualist drawings, and the radically minimalist painting of Barnett Newman. In doing so, he impressively connects the past and present in ways that are both accessible and intellectual, and has been honored with numerous international prizes. The program features kaleidoscopic loop arrangements, short films and music videos.
A Single Life, short film, Job, Joris & Marieke
In Persona: Job, Joris & Marieke
Short films and music clips from the Dutch animation studio Job, Joris & Marieke. Their work can be described as cute and funny but always centered around weird philosophical questions. Questions like: “What if you accidently exchange heads with your best friend?” or “What if you could travel through your life by playing a vinyl record?” Their stories are always filled with inept and quirky characters who end up in weird situations leading to lots of (dark) humor. In 2015 their short film A Single Life was nominated for the Oscar for best short animation. Their work has been screened at numerous international festivals, receiving over 70 awards.
Everything, David OReilly
Electronic Theatre is the Ars Electronica Animation Festival’s annual best-of program. It is made up of the fifteen best animated films selected by the jury from among this year’s 1,157 entries. At the same time, Electronic Theatre is a showcase of state-of-the-art production both in an artistic-substantive sense as well as with respect to technological innovation.
Until we coleidescape, Reinhold Bidner
This program impressively demonstrates new and innovative approaches in current digital filmmaking at the interface of art and science—e.g. nature and bio-tech studies, morphogenesis, experiments with architecture, fashion and perception.
Levitation, Sila Sveta / Russia K TV
Expanded Animation is a showcase of the new turf increasingly being occupied by digital filmmakers. The program includes computer games, installations, interactive/reactive dance performance, new forms of mappings and audiovisual laser installations.
geophone, Georgios Cherouvim
Uncharted territory is on the itinerary here too. This program spotlights the trend towards the unconventional use of technologies in animation filmmaking. Drones, robots, 3D printers, game engines, laser technologies, et al. offer new ways to depict images and motion.
Life with Herman H. Rott, Chintis Lundgren
Storytelling probably has the longest tradition in the history of animation. Funny and bizarre, poetic, thought-provoking and dark are some of the many moods of the stories told on this lineup—a colorful frog party, a drunken badger running amok and the blind Vaysha, who sees the past and future but not the present.
Disco Beast, Jonathan Monaghan
A train ride becomes a journey into a confusing world of recollections. A woman has lost her head and embarks on a trip to the seaside. Mental entanglements, fears, dead-end situations subtly characterize this program.
M.A.M.O.N. Aparato / Wecanfixit
This program features statements on a wide variety of topics: President Trump’s proposed Mexican border wall, cultural barriers, racial discrimination, a confrontation with addiction to computer games, and a critique of advertising are only a few of the messages these works get across.
HYPER-REALITY, Keiichi Matsuda
Just the thing for after dark! Some are disrespectful and satirical—a case of regicide, a Hieronymus Bosch reinterpretation, the horror of a bald spot. Nevertheless, it’s not all meant to be dead serious; there’s some funny stuff on this late-night lineup too.
Greatness, Raven Kwok / Karma Fields
Music & Visual
The music video genre too has undergone considerable expansion in recent years. Visual music and sound art, performances and installations, and complex technological experiments highlight this program.
Horror in the Woods, students of HAK Retz
Witty, off-beat, subtle, tragic and serious animated work produced by young filmmakers will be screened during the Festival Ars Electronica. Every year, gifted young filmmakers submit their movies to u19 – CREATE YOUR WORLD (AT), bugnplay.ch (CH), mb21 (DE) and C3<19 (HU). The greatest hits will be featured in Young Animations.
okazakitaiiku “MUSIC VIDEO”, okazakitaiiku / Sushi-kun, © SME Records
Japan Media Arts Festival Award-winning Program 2017
The Japan Media Arts Festival honors outstanding works from a diverse range of media in four division: art, entertainment, animation and manga. This program comprises eight highly distinctive works from award-winning works from the Japan Media Arts Festival 2017.
The Life of Miyo, Kazuki Sekiguchi
Campus Genius Award
The Campus Genius Award (Gakusei CG Contest) honors digital artworks created by students. The continuity of this contest, which has been held for 22 years, underpins its important role in Japanese media arts. Incorporating new media and technology forms of expression that change with the times, the contest forms a gateway not only for computer-graphic artworks, but for a wide range of diverse genres. Many past award-winners have also won high acclaim in Ars Electronica, the Berlin International Film Festival (Berlinale) and the Japan Media Arts Festival and are working at the front line of several creative fields, such as art, design and entertainment.
Dear my little…, Kento Yasui / Yokohama College of Art and Design, Kanagawa
ISCA (International Students Creative Award) is an international arts and information media competition for university, graduate school, and vocational school sponsored by the Knowledge Capital Association. It is an international competition open to students from Japan and around the globe.
Song of a Toad, Kariem Saleh, Alexandra Stautmeister
Animationsinstitut, part of the Filmakademie Baden-Wuerttemberg, offers a project-oriented curriculum in the subject areas of animation and interactive media. The institute encourages its students to think outside the box, develop an individual style and, by doing so, create innovative ideas. This screening features a selection of some of the latest outstanding student projects that depict the wide creative range of productions realized at the Animationsinstitut—from 2D and 3D through interactive media to VFX.
Zerebrale Dichotomie, Andreas Atteneder, Hannu Honkonen, Florian Juri, Stephan Müller, Valentin Ortner, Sabine Pils, Christoph Struber
Animation Revisited: Digital Media, Hagenberg Campus
What happened in the eld of com- puter animation just over 15 years ago in a tiny town near Linz? This program features a selection of student works from the Digital Media Department at the University of Applied Sciences Upper Austria in Hagenberg, from the early years of computer animation in Austria to recently created CG lms.
Canal Kitchen, Unit Image, Maxime Luère, Leon Berelle, Dominique Boidin, Remi Kozyra
SIGGRAPH 2017 Computer Animation Festival Traveling Show
The SIGGRAPH Computer Animation Festival Traveling Show features a selection of innovative, creative ani- mated short lms and visual e ects reels produced by professionals and students from around the world. This year’s Computer Animation Festival – a leading annual festival for the world’s most groundbreaking, accomplished, and amazing digital lm creators – premiered at SIGGRAPH 2017, 30 July-3 August in Los Angeles, California.
Moviemento Movie 1 | OK-Platz 1, 4020 Linz
|THU Sept. 7, 2017||FRI Sept. 8, 2017||SAT Sept. 9, 2017||SUN Sept. 10, 2017||MON Sept. 11, 2017|
|1 PM–2 PM||Young Animations||Filmakademie’s Animationsinstitut||Campus Genius Award||Expanded||Narration|
|2 PM-3 PM
||Narration||Hybrid Technologies||Young Animations||Music & Visuals||Campus Genius Award|
|3 PM-4 PM
||Filmakademie’s Animationsinstitut||Statement||Hybrid Technologies||Experimental||ISCA (International Students Creative Award)|
|4 PM-5 PM
||IN PERSONA: Max Hattler||Experimental||IN PERSONA: Job, Joris & Marieke||Narration||Japan Media Arts Festival Award-winning Program 2017|
|5 PM-6 PM
||IN PERSONA: Job, Joris & Marieke||ISCA (International Students Creative Award)||IN PERSONA: Max Hattler||5 PM-6:30 PM
SIGGRAPH 2017 Computer Animation Festival Traveling Show/ with Introduction
|6 PM-7 PM
||Hybrid Technologies||Japan Media Arts Festival Award-winning Program 2017||Filmakademie’s Animations-institut/ with Introduction||Expanded|
|7 PM-8 PM
||Experimental||Expanded||Statement||Music & Visuals|
|8 PM-9 PM
||Music & Visuals||8 PM-9:30 PM
IN PERSONA: Max Hattler/ with Introduction and Q&A
|8 PM-10 PM
Animation Revisited: Digital Media, Hagenberg Campus/ with Moderation
|Japan Media Arts Festival Award-winning Program 2017||Statement|
|9 PM-10 PM
||Mental States||9:30 PM-11 PM
IN PERSONA: Job, Joris & Marieke/ with Introduction and Q&A
|Late Nite||Mental States|
|10 PM-11 PM
||Late Nite||10 PM-midnight
|Mental States||Late Nite|
Deep Space 8K | Ars Electronica Center, Ars-Electronica-Straße 1, 4040 Linz
|THU Sept. 7, 2017||SAT Sept. 9, 2017||SUN Sept. 10, 2017||MON Sept. 11, 2017|
|Deep Space 8K||6 PM-6:30 PM
|7 PM-8 PM
|1:30 PM-2 PM
|1 PM-2 PM
Moviemento Sommerkino | OK-Platz 1, 4020 Linz
SAT Sept. 9, 2017
8 PM-10 PM