We look forward to seeing you during the latter part of this week. Due to unforeseen circumstances some of our colleagues will neither join us nor participate in the conference. They and their contributions will be missed. The schedule has been modified to reflect the resulting last-second changes. This should not affect the planned program. We wish you a safe journey as you pack your bags for our annual congregation.
Welcome to SCAD-Atlanta.
In conjunction with the conference, the SCAD Library will be presenting a special exhibition, Behind the Cels: Selections from SCAD’s Don Bluth Collection, featuring art work donated to the school by Don Bluth and Gary Goldman. Goldman will introduce the exhibit during the conference on Saturday, July 11th, and will also be present at a free reception, which is open to the public, Thursday evening, July 9th, from 6:00-8:00 pm.
Andrew Darley has sent along the following summary of his keynote address, which will be given at the start of the conference on Friday morning, at 10:00 a.m.:
On the Persistence of Animation
Why “the persistence of animation”? Why now? This paper is a direct response to this year’s conference theme and these are just two of the questions it addresses. Two ideas — the “persistence of vision’ and the “digital turn” — sprang to this author’s mind on first hearing the title and this talk discusses these and further concepts in a broad ranging exploration that asks just what, beyond the mere affirmation of the obvious (i.e. animation’s continued existence), the title might be suggesting. Persistence of vision and computerisation are, indeed, understood as important metaphors in the rhetoric generated by the conference theme and hence in the overall message of the conference itself. It is suggested that persistence cannot rest on any simple or facile embrace of new technologies and techniques but must also acknowledge the importance of history and the vitality of tradition. It ends with a call to animation scholars to recognise the extraordinary heterogeneity of their subject and its place and role within the wider context of media globalisation
Revolutionary Cels: The Sydney Waterfront, Harry Reade and Cuban Animation
Abstract: Harry Reade (1927-1998) was an Australian waterside worker-artist who influenced the development of the educational sector of Cuban animation during the early years of that country’s Revolution.
This paper examines the development of Reade’s ideological stance and the circumstances that enabled him to contribute to the use of animation as an agent of social change.
Biographical Statement: Max Bannah works as an animator producing short films, television commercials, illustrations and cartoon graphics. He also lectures in Animation History and Practice, and Drawing for Animation at Queensland University of Technology where he completed his master’s thesis A cause for animation: Harry Reade and the Cuban Revolution in 2007.
Georgia Animation on Our Mind: A Screening of Peachtree State Animation
ASIFA-Atlanta Presents a Screening of Local Independent and Commercial Work
When most people think of animation and Atlanta, Cartoon Network is the first thing that comes to mind. However, the city is also home to a small but thriving independent and commercial animation scene. So we thought it only appropriate to ask ASIFA-Atlanta to put together this program to showcase talent from both the Atlanta and Savannah areas. The High Museum of Art will host this screening on Friday, July 10 at 8 p.m. in the Rich Theatre of the Woodruff Arts Center, 1280 Peachtree Street NE (a short walk from the conference hotel). The event is free and open to the public; The event is free and open to the public; participants will automatically be signed up for tickets. Free registration for all others will be available (at a date to be announced) through the ASIFA-Atlanta website.
Many of the films were previously shown at ASIFA-Atlanta’s two major showcases: “Roll Yer Own” and “Blowin’ Smoke,” which showcase local independent and commercial animation respectively.
Though the schedule has not yet been finalized, ASIFA-Atlanta President Brett W. Thompson reports that so far the films include:
Avery Matthews from Turner Studios [pictured above], a never aired Cartoon Network pilot. In addition, there is Hamid Bahrami’s breathtaking, hand-drawn film Traveler of the Horizon, previously shown at ASIFA-Atlanta’s celebration of International Animation Day at the High Museum of Art; Takuro Masuda’s stop motion Death of a Matriarch, made with a grant from the Atlanta’s Center for Puppetry Arts’ Xperimental Puppetry Theatre program; SCAD-Atlanta graduate Amanda Goodbread’s Curtains and SCAD professor Hal Miles’ stop motion The Madness of Being will also be shown. Also part of the program is Mouse and Cat, an independent effort made by Joe Peery, Turner Studios animation director and former ASIFA-Atlanta president, as well as my first film, Fluidtoons.
ASIFA-Atlanta is the Atlanta chapter of ASIFA, the International Animated Film Association. ASIFA-Atlanta puts on animation events about once a month and has regular workshops, figure drawing classes, and board meetings, and also works with the Atlanta Film Festival. More information available at http://www.asifa-atlanta.com/
The High Museum of Art, founded in 1905 as the Atlanta Art Association, is the leading art museum in the Southeastern United States. With more than 11,000 works of art in its permanent collection, the High Museum of Art has an extensive anthology of nineteenth- and twentieth-century American and decorative art; significant holdings of European paintings; a growing collection of African American art; and burgeoning collections of modern and contemporary art, photography and African art. The High is also dedicated to supporting and collecting works by Southern artists and is distinguished as the only major museum in North America to have a curatorial department specifically devoted to the field of folk and self-taught art. The High’s Media Arts department produces acclaimed annual film series and festivals of foreign, independent and classic cinema. In November 2005 the High opened three new buildings designed by architect Renzo Piano that more than doubled the Museum’s size, creating a vibrant “village for the arts”at the Woodruff Arts Center in midtown Atlanta. For more information about the High, please visit www.High.org.
SAS conferences have often featured workshops dealing with rather practical matters of special interest to its membership. These have included teaching both animation production and animation history. We are delighted to report that this year’s conference will feature workshops on both topics.
On Friday morning, Harvey Deneroff will moderate an open discussion on Teaching Animation History in a Cinema Studies World, right after Andrew Darley’s keynote address; and first thing Saturday morning, Tom Knott will oversee a panel discussion he calls Push/Pull: The Student, The Education and The Industry.
If you have any ideas about what might be included in either of these events, please let us know.
Workshop Moderator: Teaching Animation History in a Cinema Studies World
This workshop will provide an open forum for a discussion of problems and approaches involved in teaching animation history. It is expected to include, but not be limited to such topics as: To what extent should it be taught in the context of film and TV history? How can it be integrated into classes in cinema and media history? Are current textbooks in the field adequate? Do cinema history textbooks adequately deal with animation history? How does one deal with motion graphics, visual effects animation and game animation? And what are the advantages of teaching animation history from nonchronological and/or theoretical approaches?
Biographical Statement: Harvey Deneroff, a Professor of Animation at SCAD-Atlanta, has a special interest in the American animation industry, especially the history of animation unions. He was the first editor of Animation Magazine and Animation World Magazine, and his writings have appeared in Film History, The Hollywood Reporter, Animatoon and Sight and Sound, as well as several books. He is the author of The Art of Anastasia (1997) and helped Fred Ladd write Astro Boy and Anime Come to the Americas (2008). He served as Festival Director of the Week With the Masters Animation Celebration, in India, organized the Ojai Animation Conference, and in 1987 founded SAS, subsequently serving as its first president.
Workshop: Push/Pull: The Student, The Education and The Industry (Moderator)
With the animation industry constantly evolving and with its tentacles in so much of the media world how does an animation program best prepare its students? It can be a push-pull, tug of war — addressing student wants and industry needs preparing the student not just for their first job but also for a long successful career and the many directions a career can take. This conversation will workshop ways and ideas of working together.
Biographical Statement: For the past 14 years Tom Knott has recruited and built animation teams for such studios as Warner Bros (The Iron Giant) and Laika (Coraline), among others. He has also worked on the production side for Warner Bros. (Looney Tunes: Back In Action) and Acme Filmworks (The Drew Carry Green Screen Show). From 1988 to 1995 he was a Director of the Ottawa International Animation Festival as well as assisting and providing direction for the Los Angeles International Animation Celebration. He occasionally writes about animation (Animation Art, Flame Tree Publishing, 2004); lectures and teaches; programs retrospectives; and was part of the planning committee for the 1990 Ottawa and 2002 Glendale Society for Animation Studies Conferences.
Abstract:Australian Experimental Animator Neil Taylor’s (1945-) animated gestures repetitively inscribe the surfaces of flipbooks or note pads (Short Lives [1980-90]) and cash register rolls (Roll Film 1990 and Copy Copy 1998) and are often enhanced by ‘machines’ designed to facilitate such activity. These animations are informed by Taylor’s successful wire-based sculptural practice and his 20 years experience of teaching animation to tertiary students. For Taylor ‘the subject of the films was drawing, itself, and how animating over extended periods affects us.’ (Taylor, 1990: 15 in Cantrills Filmnotes).
Biographical Statement: Dirk de Bruyn teaches animation and digital culture at Deakin University. As well as sustaining his own creative experimental animation and multi-screen performance practice for over 25 years he has written about this area in Cantrills Filmnotes and Senses of Cinema. He is committed to documenting, promoting and presenting Australian animation in his teaching practice and national and international forums. More information on his practice and research is available at: http://www.innersense.com.au/mif/debruyn.html.
We are delighted to announce that, in conjunction with the Persistence of Animation Conference, SCAD-Atlanta will present an exhibition of art and artifacts from the Don Bluth Collecion, which is housed in the school’s Jen Library in Savannah. The exhibit, which will run from July 7th through July 31st, will be on display in Gallery 4 See, which is where registration will take place. (The conference itself will take place in several adjacent rooms.)
The collection, which was donated to SCAD by Don Bluth and Gary Goldman, is being organized by the library’s archivist, Deborah Rouse, who provided the following:
The Special Collections Department of SCAD’s Jen Library is honored to be able to present an exhibit of selections from the Don Bluth Collection of Animation for the Society for Animation Studies’ Annual Conference in July. The collection, a generous donation from Don Bluth and Gary Goldman, arrived at the Savannah campus of SCAD in November of 2005 in 857 oversized boxes. It consists of cels, animation drawings, storyboards, color models, and other materials created by Don Bluth Productions and the company’s later incarnations in the production of animated features and video games between 1979 and 2000. Also included in the collection are administrative, legal, and other documents, as well as scripts, concepts, and publicity-related materials. Various media, including films, sound recordings, VHS tapes, photographs, slides, and other formats, round out the collection. The studio operated in both the United States and Ireland, and was at various times, affiliated with other production companies.
A preliminary inventory was completed in summer of 2006 and processing began in the fall of that same year. Though the processing of the collection will continue for many years, the processed portions of the collection are available to students, faculty, and researchers now. It is an amazing resource for a number of disciplines, including animation, sequential art, illustration, and many others. Please stop by while you are at the conference and see the exhibit. We will try to include a little something from all aspects of the collection to appeal to all areas of interest.
The image about is a detail of a animation cel for the video game Dragon’s Lair II, Below is a model sheet for Bruno, the polar bear, from Song of the Ice Whale, also known as Kandu, an unrealized feature project. Copyright 1988. Both are part of the Don Bluth Collection of Animation, Jen Library Archives and Special Collections, Savannah College of Art.