SUMMARY: 19 renowned animators present ‘animated self-portraits’, attempted to explain themselves through their chosen medium.
WHY IT’S HERE: David Ehrlich’s ‘Animated Self-Portraits’ is a short anthology of pieces by 19 different animators from various parts of the world. Like Marv Newland’s ‘Anijam’, it is a fascinating attempt to bring together the work of some of the industries most respected names, but unlike Newland’s film ‘Animated Self-Portraits’ does not attempt to create a cohesive experience. While Newland imposed restrictions on his animators (they had to use the same character and start with the closing frame of the previous animator’s work), Ehrlich gives his directors free reign to create their self-representative pieces. Each piece is about 30 seconds or less in length and gives us a glimpse of how animators perceive themselves, in most cases with great humour and invention. Although it is a fascinating experience for anyone, ‘Animated Self-Portraits’ will be of special interest to animation fans who will instantly recognise the work of Jan Svankmajer, Sally Cruikshank, Bill Plympton and many others, even before the closing credits, which handily clarifies the artists behind the animations.