Still from BLACK SQUARE (2020) by Peter Burr
The works in this programme were all completed in the USA during 2019-20. This profoundly turbulent and uncertain time has left its mark on each of the works, but in different ways, and some more overt than others. Animation techniques can generate a visceral sense of destabilisation, an undermining of the fluid continuity we might expect from the moving image. They can also reveal what might lie behind the surface of one’s apparent reality; hidden patterns and disturbing truths. Animation is an artform well suited to a time of crisis, enabling the world around us to be broken up, taken apart and remade. It can also provide a space for direct and uninhibited expression where fears, dreams, questions and memories can take form and co-exist without constraint. These films contain perceptive and sometimes painful resonances with contemporary America, but beyond that they are also some of the most vital and original recent animation works from anywhere on the planet.
The Blank Page (Jake Fried, 2020)
One drawing reworked and scanned frame by frame. Ink and white-out on paper, sound design by the artist.
Something to Treasure (Annapurna Kumar, 2019)
Warm showers make me see stars.
Private Properties (Lilli Carré, 2019)
A forensic study of a private space. Linework aligns into fleeting representations, as the architecture perpetually collapses and rebuilds. The film revolves around ideas of ownership of one’s environment, possessions, and body.
BLACK SQUARE (Peter Burr, 2020)
BLACK SQUARE animates a philosophy of perception through a complex assault of optical illusions, highlighting limitations of the viewers’ own body and mind. What emerges is a portrait of an anxious divided society testing the boundaries of physical awareness.
2065 (Gabrielle Ledet, 2020)
Mixing vibrant, drawn animations with home videos, family photos, and audio recordings of loved ones, 2065 is at once autobiographical and otherworldly. Prison, okra, tears and school teachers exist alongside a multiplication of faces and figures, all rendered in Ledet’s signature style.
A Woman in Trouble is a Temporary Thing (Karen Yasinsky, 2019)
A fictional portrait film including Victoria Legrand (of the band Beach House) set in a flat dystopian space. An early interlude includes a horse departing the screen, clearing the space for our subject, tempered by an animated disintegrating cobweb.
Now 2 (Kevin Eskew, 2019)
Who’s grooming whom? Scenes of puzzling new truths piercing through the foam veil.
Domo Dreams (Jack Wedge, 2016-2020)
A dreamhouse travels across space and time inside the subconscious of a small totoro cat.
Two Truths and a Lie (Yifan Jiang, James J.A. Mercer, 2019)
After receiving a name from its grandmother, a baby is faced with the prospects of knowledge, love and death in a game of two truths and a lie. Over a 20 year timeline, the baby journeys across the globe, giving away three aspects of itself to three others.
Maelstrom (Jenny Perlin, 2020)
The great whirlpool arrives and sucks everything into its centre, spitting out only fragments and noises. The shoreline is in view, but unreachable. The maelstrom pulls us under.
Driftless (Jonah Primiano, 2019)
Now only a memory, intimate moments with a family pet emerge and evaporate through delicate graphite drawings.
Please note: Some films in this programme contain flashing imagery which might affect those susceptible to photosensitive epilepsy.
Still from Maelstrom (2020) by Jenny Perlin
With Special Thanks to Arts Council England