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Derek haugen
08.17.2009   

Infinite Animation: The Work of Adam Beckett - Presented by the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Science and Technology Council and The iotaCenter

Categories: [Events] 

As one of a core group of animators in the early years of Cal Arts' Experimental Animation program, Beckett had an inimitable style and often twisted vision of the world. He made only six films, began two more, and had a short but influential career in the visual effects industry. This included a credit as head of the Rotoscope and Animation Department on the film Star Wars (1977). Tragically, the completion of his films and the flourishing of his career were cut short by his tragic death in 1979.

In remembrance of a life well lived and artistic vision well realized, this special evening will feature a lineup of panels and screenings co-moderated by iota board member and Beckett biographer Pamela Turner, along with visual effects artist Richard Winn Taylor, with several of Beckett's contemporaries speaking about his films, personality, and effects innovations. The program will also include the premiere of Beckett's elusive unfinished work Life in the Atom, recently restored by the Academy Film Archive. In conjunction with the event, there will be an exhibit of Beckett's artwork as well as artifacts from his estate. Hosted by visual effects artist Richard Winn Taylor and Adam Beckett biographer Pamela Turner.

When: Monday, August 17, at 8 p.m.
Place: Linwood Dunn Theater, 1313 Vine Street, Hollywood, CA 90028

For more information, please visit the Academy's website.
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Jeremy schwartz
08.17.2009   

The iotaWeekly - August 17-23, 2009

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
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from Carnival (1963)

Clip of the Week
Carnival (1963) by Jules Engel

Made in France and less abstract than the majority of Engel’s work, Carnival is a surrealistic tromp through an absurdly nightmarish cartoon carnival where the workers are inept as well as masochistic (for the amusement of its patrons), the rides are broken and the magic acts turn violent. An ironic twist is the film’s whimsical visual style, which is clearly influenced by Engel’s years at the UPA Studio.

This title and fifteen other works by Jules Engel are included on iotaCenter's new Kinetica Video Library release, Jules Engel Selected Works Volume 1, which is available through our store. Click here for more information and to purchase.



Site of the Week
Preservation Insanity

What kinds of special factors go into a film preservation project, especially one involving the special considerations of experimental film? iota works closely with preservationist Mark Toscano on maintaining and preserving works from our collection. Outside of his job at the Academy Film Archive, Mark maintains the informational and anecdotal blog Preservation Insanity, which details some of the issues inherent in realizing a preservation project for experimental films.

Of particular interest to iota's community might be the following posts - 1) Hell Split Flexion, about some discoveries Mark made while examining the original hand-painted negative of Brakhage's film, and 2) Know Your Enemy, about Ektochrome Commercial (ECO) film stock and how its use by animators and experimental filmmakers can cause particular problems for the preservationist down the line.


from Ace of Light (1984)

Artist of the Week
Sky-David

A graduate of CalArts, Sky-David (formerly known as Dennis Pies) has created several beautiful abstract films with pastel on black paper (Luma Nocturna) and paints and inks on white (Sonoma). He also given dance performances with his animations: his film Dissolve in Light uses a central film with a spiritual/mythological narration, while he, dancing, carries a screen reflecting other animated imagery.

The above image is from Sky's work Ace of Light (1984), a film that explores the concept of verbal construction as a pure visual stream. Animated to Sky's voice reading a poem aloud, the film, according to Sky, "allows a great deal of room for the viewer to construct the mystery of that narrative." After filming some sections on paper and others using clay on glass, the negative was projected through an ariel image projector on the Oxberry Animation stand into water, with cels of a bird blocking light from the projector, and re-filmed frame by frame by frame. The film took three years to complete. Ace of Light is available for viewing in iota's Study Center at our offices in Culver City.

For more information about Sky-David, please visit his iotaCenter profile or you can visit the artist's website directly.
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Derek haugen
08.13.2009   

Calculations: Pioneers of Computer Animation | August 13, 2009 - Presented by The iotaCenter and Echo Park Film Center

Categories: [Events] 

In an effort to enlighten both art and technology, artists worked with computers to create an aesthetic specific to the machine decades before Hollywood CGI spectaculars. At IBM, Bell, and in their own home-built labs, they generated visionary spectacles from mathematical precision--complex abstractions, stroboscopic patterns, kinetic rhythms, and volumetric illusions. Tonight’s program is an introduction to these early pioneers and a cross-section of some of their finest works. iota is working with local venue Echo Park Film Center, in conjunction with Chicago-based artist Jodie Mack and Amy Beste to bring you this program.

For more information about the program, visit the event page.

When: Thursday, August 13, 2009, 8pm
Where: Echo Park Film Center, 1200 N. Alvarado (at Sunset) in Los Angeles
Map and Directions
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Derek haugen
08.10.2009   

The iotaWeekly - August 10-16, 2009

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from 1/3 v.1

Clip of the Week
1/3 v.1 (2006) by Chiaki Watanabe

Experience the audial and visual intensity in an excerpt from "1/3 (one over three)," a 2006 piece from award-winning abstract artist Chiaki Watanabe with music by Tristan Perich.

Find out more about Chiaki Watanabe at her iotaCenter Profile and her page at The Visual Music Village.



Site of the Week
Cartoon Brew

Bringing "the latest news and trends in animation to over 10,000 different artists, entertainment execs and cartoon aficionados," Cartoon Brew is a fantastic resource for the experimental and character animator.

This renowned animation blog features the writings of animation authorities Jerry Beck and Amid Amidi who not only post on the latest happenings in the world of animation, but also highlight incredible finds from the animation of the past for rediscovery by new generations of animators.


Adam Beckett

Artist of the Week
Adam Beckett

A star among many rising stars, Adam Beckett had a great influence on his fellow students in Jules Engel's then newly-formed Experimental Animation program at CalArts. Both prolific and talented, Adam is still remembered by those who participated in the vibrant film festival community of the 1970's, and who were aware of the evolving animation and experimental film genres. Between 1970 and 1975, Beckett completed seven groundbreaking films: "The Letter" (with James Gore), "Dear Janice," "Evolution of the Red Star," "Sausage City," "Flesh Flows," "Heavy-Light" and "Kitsch in Synch." Two larger independent animations, "Life in the Atom" and "Knotte Grosse," remain unfinished due to Beckett's work in the growing visual effects industry and his tragic and untimely death in 1979 at the age of 29.

Although Adam Beckett's personal films are over 30 years old, they still resonate as unique and relevant in the ongoing discourse of art animation. Join The iotaCenter and the Academy of Motion Pictures Arts & Sciences' Science and Technology Council for "Infinite Animation: The Work of Adam Beckett," an August 17th event celebrating the life and work of this unique vision.

For ticket and event information, please visit the Academy's website.

For more information about Adam Beckett and his work, please visit his iotaCenter profile.
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Derek haugen
08.03.2009   

The iotaWeekly - August 3-9, 2009

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from Tongul Torture

Clip of the Week
Tongul Torture (2009) by Chris Casady

Watch the colorfully frantic and dynamic excerpt from "Tongul Torture," a work-in-progress from award-winning animator Chris Casady (Pencil Dance, Puddle Jumper).

Chris can be seen on the panel of the August 17 event "Infinite Animation: The Work of Adam Beckett," presented by The iotaCenter and the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences' Science and Technology Council, at the Linwood Dunn Theater in Hollywood, CA.

Find out more about Casady and his work at his iotaCenter Profile and his page at The Visual Music Village.



Site of the Week
Echo Park Film Center

Echo Park Film Center is a non-profit media arts organization located in the Echo Park neighborhood of Los Angeles. EPFC makes an effort to champion local filmmaking by providing the community with exhibitions, an extensive film library, affordable classes and equipment rental, and an international touring festival showcasing local established and emerging filmmakers. Learn more about the EPFC and submit your film for future programming today!

Echo Park Film Center is also hosting the August 13 event, "Calculations: Pioneers of Computer Animation," organized by Jodie Mack and curated by Amy Beste and The iotaCenter.


from Yard Work is Hard Work

Artist of the Week
Jodie Mack

"Jodie Mack is a Chicago-based artist working in various forms of cut-out and stop-motion animation. Her films combine traditional feminine crafts with rhythmic editing and obsessive nuance to create a radical domesticity that is new to the film world.

Mack received her MFA from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago and in 2008 was the recipient of an Illinois Arts Council Media Arts Fellowship. She works with young filmmakers and spends her free time making pop-up cards and coordinating screenings and film festivals."

--Flavorpill



Jodie Mack's 29-minute, 16mm animated film Yard Work is Hard Work premiered August 2008 in Chicago and was screened earlier this year at the Panorama Theater in Los Angeles. Be sure to catch the upcoming August 13 event, "Calculations: Pioneers of Computer Animation," organized by Jodie Mack in conjunction with The iotaCenter at Echo Park Film Center.

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Derek haugen
07.27.2009   

The iotaWeekly - July 27-August 2, 2009

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from Scratch Pad

Clip of the Week
Scratch Pad (1960) by Hy Hirsh

"Hy Hirsh's (1911-1961) filmmaking grew out of the unique combination of his generous aesthetic bon vivant personality, his still photography which took him far and wide, and his extraordinary technical facility which allowed him to build his own optical printer, recording studio, etc. By the time he composed his first personal film, he had participated in making a dozen experimental films by other people..."

--Dr. William Moritz



Find out more about Hy Hirsh and his work at his iotaCenter Profile.



Site of the Week
Society for Animation Studies

"The Society for Animation Studies (SAS) is an international organization dedicated to the study of animation history and theory. It was founded by Dr. Harvey Deneroff in 1987. Each year, the SAS holds an annual conference at locations throughout the world, where members present their recent research."


from Slither

Artist of the Week
Jeffers Egan

"Jeffers Egan's work defines a new digital aesthetic for Video and Fine Art. Developed entirely with handcrafted, computer based algorithmic processes, Egan's abstract animations explore the concepts of digital as organism, and software as ecosystem. His motion paintings, Live AV performances, and videos have been showcased worldwide at festivals, galleries and museums including Transmediale, Netmage, Dissonanze, Plateaux, Cimatics, Interieur Biennale, Walker Art Museum, Guggenheim Bilbao, and the New York Video Festival. Egan's work has acheived international critical acclaim, nominated for media art awards at the D-Motion, Popkomm and Backup festivals, and hailed as 'astounding'(Groove), 'beautiful'(New York Times), 'fascinating'(Musicwoche), 'an extremely provocative multi-media performance with an absolutely unique aesthetic'(KEYS), 'a mesmerizing and meditative experience(ArtWeek)" and "the most advanced trip imaginable in the current field of video art.'(De:Bug)"

--www.jefferseagan.com



Purchase Jeffers Egan's "Slither" at the iotaStore.

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Derek haugen
07.20.2009   

The iotaWeekly - July 20-26, 2009

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from Impossible Spaces

Clip of the Week
Impossible Spaces (2008) by Sylvia Pengilly

Sylvia Pengilly is a retired professor of music theory, composition and electronic music who previously taught at Loyola University in New Orleans and currently resides in California. Her collaborations with musician Michael Rhoades yielded four of the works found on her DVD collection, Six Videos, available from The iotaStore here.

Find out more about Sylvia Pengilly and her work at her website.



Site of the Week
ASIFA-Hollywood Animation Archive

In the heart of Burbank, ASIFA-Hollywood hosts the Animation Archive, "a museum, library and archive dealing with the subject of animation for the use of researchers, students, artists and the general public," but if you can't make it out to the physical space, the Animation Archive's website is a smorgasbord of classic animated films and scanned original art from legendary animators and cartoonists.


REDCAT

Artist of the Week
Phil Solomon

"Solomon has mastered the step-printer (a machine which permits precise, and if one wants, automated rephotography, reversal of the motion picture image, photography within the frame. It can be said of both him and (James) Herbert, then, that they proceed a frame at a time: there the similarity ends. Solomon disintegrates the entire pictorial 'fabric' (of what is mostly found-footage, or a 'gift' as he calls it) of old movies in various states of emulsion rot. He utilizes the organic mold and dry crack patterns, the natural decay of the footage, until the original subject matter, its anima, crawls with the textural 'maggots' of its own chemical decomposition and dissolves in a beautiful display of multi-faceted light."

--Stan Brakhage, "Time ...on Dit," Musicworks, 1995



Check out Phil Solomon's work at his website.

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Derek haugen
07.13.2009   

The iotaWeekly - July 13-19, 2009

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
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from Runa's Spell

Clip of the Week
Runa's Spell (2007) by Stephanie Maxwell

Stephanie Maxwell has been creating stunningly beautiful and original experimental animation for over twenty years. As a film artist who specializes in hand painting and engraving directly onto the surface of 35mm film stock, Maxwell employs a wide variety of materials and tools, including paints, markers, bleach, stencils, engraving tools, airbrush and many more experimental techniques..

The film can be found in its entirety along with thirteen other Maxwell films on Stephanie Maxwell: Animated Works, 1984-2007, a part of The iotaCenter's Kinetica Video Library™, available for purchase here.

Learn more about the Kinetica Video Library™ here.


Kevin Geiger

Site of the Week
Animation Options

Kevin Geiger, the President & CEO of Animation Options, LLC, hosts a site that is not only a storefront for his consulting firm, but also a launching pad for his insights, resources, and video presentations dealing with animation production. For any team or company, and even any individual, looking to create, produce, and distribute an animated film, both effectively and efficiently, the information Animation Options has to offer is worth looking into.

Speaking from years of experience in the animation industry and working with a wide array of clients, Keven Geiger has an incredible amount of expertise regarding the realities of producing animation that is applicable to both large and small scale projects.


New York Times

Artist of the Week
Jeff Scher

"Jeff Scher is a painter who makes experimental films and an experimental filmmaker who paints. His work is in the permanent collection of the Museum of Modern Art and the Hirshhorn Museum, and has been screened at the Guggenheim Museum, the Pompidou Center in Paris, the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, and at many film festivals around the world, including opening night at the New York Film Festival. Mr. Scher has also had two solo shows of his paintings, which have also been included in many group shows in New York galleries. Additionally, he has created commissioned work for HBO, HBO Family, PBS, the Sundance Channel and more. Mr. Scher teaches graduate courses at the School of Visual Arts and at NYU Tisch School of the Arts Kanbar Institute of Film & Television's Animation program. He lives in Brooklyn with his wife and two sons."

--The New York Times



Check out Scher's work at his website.

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Derek haugen
07.06.2009   

The iotaWeekly - July 6-12, 2009

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from Stele by Robert Darroll

Clip of the Week
Stele (1996-1999) by Robert Darroll

Robert Darroll's Stele is a striking example of a collage of cel, video and computer animation techniques that was featured in The iotaCenter's 2002-2003 touring exhibition KINETICA 4.

The film can be found in its entirety along with four other Darroll films on Robert Darroll: Digital Animations, 1990-2001, a part of The iotaCenter's Kinetica Video Library,™ available for purchase here.

Learn more about the Kinetica Video Library™here.


Site of the Week
Quickdraw Animation Society

"Celebrating 25 years as a nonprofit artist run society dedicated to the art of independent animation. The Quickdraw Animation Society supports and encourages the production of innovative independent animation and develops the appreciation of all types of animation as a viable artistic medium."

--Quickdraw Animation Society


Scott Snibbe

Artist of the Week
Scott Snibbe

"Scott Snibbe creates immersive interactive art that evokes powerful emotional and social engagement from viewers. His works are known for their positive social effects: fostering a sense of interdependence, promoting social interaction among strangers, and increasing viewers' concentration. His artworks have been installed in over one hundred art museums, performance spaces, science museums and public spaces worldwide since 1995...

Snibbe was born in 1969 in New York City. He holds Bachelor's degrees in Computer Science and Fine Art, and a Master's in Computer Science from Brown University. Snibbe studied experimental animation at the Rhode Island School of Design and his films have been widely shown internationally. He has taught media art and experimental film at Brown University, The San Francisco Art Institute, the California Institute of the Arts, The Rhode Island School of Design and UC Berkeley. Snibbe worked at Adobe Systems as a Computer Scientist where he made substantial contributions to the special effects software Adobe After Effects and research projects at Adobe Research. Snibbe held research positions at Interval Research where he performed basic research in haptics, computer vision and interactive cinema. Snibbe's research is documented in a number of academic papers, and over a dozen patents."

--artist's website



Check out Snibbe's latest work at Scott Snibbe - Interactive Art.

Learn more about Scott Snibbe at his iotaCenter Profile.
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Derek haugen
06.29.2009   

The iotaWeekly - June 29-July 5, 2009

Categories: [iotaWeekly] 
The iotaCenter introduces the first in a series called The iotaWeekly, a weekly email and blog entry of featured clips, artists and websites for the week. Stay tuned for more each week!





Wet Paint (1977) by Jules Engel

Clip of the Week
Jules Engel: An Artist For All Seasons (2010) by Janeann Dill, PhD

Watch a clip from the documentary by Janeann Dill, PhD, a filmmaker and former student of the renowned artist, filmmaker, and educator Jules engel.

An excerpt of the documentary can be found on the latest installment of The Kinetica Video Library™, Jules Engel: Selected Works, Volume I, available here.


Antonio Brech

Site of the Week
The Official Site of Antonio Brech

Antonio Brech (aka Jose Antonio Fernández Fernández) with the technical assistance of Fernando Federico Gonzáles Carmago has crafted an innovative and aesthetically beautiful website to feature his abstract animations and scholarship.

Antonio Brech received his BA in Psychology from Universidad de Santiago de Compostela. Since 1980, he has been a psychologist for the Spanish Ministry of Education and the Educational Council of Xunta de Galicia. Fernández is also a lecturer for courses on the education therapy, cultural, art and ethics in new technological environments. He is the director of psycho-sonographic workshops specializing in ecological immersion in intersensory stimulation. He is currently at work on his doctoral thesis entitled, "Inter-modal-ethics."

Visit his official site here.

Chris Casady

Artist of the Week
Chris Casady

Chris Casady, known for his energetic abstract graphics and colorful Flash title sequences, has worked in motion picture effects, music videos and TV commercials from his studio in Los Angeles, CA. He has designed the opening for the American Film Institute's L.A. International Film Festival and has won two Clio awards for previous work in animated commercials. He has directed animated music videos for the Beastie Boys as well as Eddie Murphy and Michael Jackson.

A graduate of CalArts, Casady also creates personal films with a style reminiscent of masters like Oskar Fischinger and an energy both whimsical and forceful that have garnered international recognition. His early film Pencil Dance (1988) won top awards at international animation festivals in Canada, France, Japan and Italy upon its release and his recent Puddle Jumper (2007) was the Third Prize winner at the 2008 Punto y Raya Festival presented by MAD Actions and The iotaCenter. Check out Casady's latest work at The Visual Music Village.

Learn more about Chris Casady at his iotaCenter Profile.
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