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“Animating Politics from Méliès to Mulloy”

01.01.2017

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The International Animated Film Festival “ANIMATOR” and the Department of Film, Television and the New Media of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan would like to invite you to the international scientific conference entitled: “Animating Politics from Méliès to Mulloy”, which will be held during the 10th edition of the festival on 11-12 July, 2017 in Poznan.

Events taking place in the recent months – wars in the Middle East, the immigration crisis, the growing strength of fundamentalisms on the one hand and populisms on the other, the surprising results of elections and referendums in different countries – have all contributed (as is usually the case in periods of historical turbulences) to the great proliferation of political satire and visual propaganda. Since the very beginning, film, especially the animated one, has been used as a weapon in political games. Already in the year 1899 Georges Méliès decided to express his opinion with a camera on the trial of Alfred Dreyfus (”L'affaire Dreyfus”). In the same year, Arthur Melbourne-Cooper produced virtually the first animated propaganda commercial: ”Matches: An Appeal”. Last year, a spectacular festival career was made by Phil Mulloy’s film entitled ”Endgame”, the winner of the Bronze Pegasus at Animator 2016) – a satirical, minimalist cartoon, which shows the diseases of the second decade of the 20th century: conflicts, terrorism and computer games, in which killing is the main goal. In between these poles, there is a huge area, which still requires critical reflection.

Since 2014, Animator has been accompanied by conferences, during which researchers and practitioners have explored various aspects of the animated film. We thought that the moment has come to talk about the connections of animation with the politics. These connections were and still are diverse: from propaganda films commissioned by the authorities during war and ideological conflicts, through to comments regarding current events and short satirical forms found on the internet. We would like to encourage the conference participants to search for answers to several questions, for instance, the ones listed below:


1. Can an animator be free?
2. What is the condition of political animation across the world?
3. What is the role of animation on social media?
4. Does animation do anything in reference to the immigration crisis?
5. Is the so called animated documentary a contradiction in terms?
6. What was the effectiveness of the propaganda animation during World War II and the Cold War.
7. Did any important animation works emerge during the socialist realism era?
8. How can the existence of the phenomenon of the Polish critical animation during the Communist era be explained?
9. What is the condition of the Polish political animation nowadays?
10. Does the Polish internet animation exist?



Obviously, the above questions do not deal with all aspects of the issue, i.e. animation vs. politics, but can constitute the starting point for a broader discussion, during which, not only will it be possible to explore the subject, but also to define the place of the animated film in the contemporary world more precisely.

Applications (subject plus affiliations and as well as a short abstract of about 1500 characters) should be sent by 6 March 2017 to the following e-mail address: conference@animator-festival.com.
The conference programme will be announced on 31 March.
English is the preferred language of communication. Performance time – about 25 minutes.
The organisers ensure one overnight stay and accreditation for all events to the participants of the 10th edition of the ANIMATOR festival.


Scientific Committee:
Marcin Giżycki
Hanna Margolis
Krzysztof Kozłowski


Organisational Committee:
Department of Film, Television and the New Media of Adam Mickiewicz University in Poznan - Marek Bochniarz
Programme Section of the International Animated Film Festival “ANIMATOR” - Filip Kozłowski