Backed by soundtracks as varied as the powerful sounds of the symphony orchestra and the dance beats of the nightclub are this year’s most loved Canadian shorts. With works by artists from coast to coast (B.C., Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia), this selection presents a variety of unique animation and conceptual videos. Focusing on the rich cinematic movements of robotic machines, the Sharpie of a self- obsessed artist or the antics of a weird, naked creature up a rabbit hole, each short creatively draws attention to the world around it.
Running (Heart, Mind, Body, Spirit)
Dir: Ann Marie Fleming | Canada 2008 | 5:23 | Betacam Sp | Director In Attendance
Based on acupuncture theory, Fleming’s new animation features her infamous character Stick on another adventure through the body and beyond. This new short was commissioned by the Victoria Symphony Orchestra for their Reel Music series and features an original score by French Canadian composer Maxime Goulet.
Ann Marie Fleming is an award-winning Canadian independent filmmaker, writer, and artist born in Okinawa, Japan, of Chinese and Australian parentage. Her film work incorporates various techniques – animation, documentary, experimental, and dramatic – and deals with themes such as family, history, and memory.
Dir: Khanhthuan Tran | Canada 2007 | 2:05 | MiniDV | Director In Attendance
In a study on himself, Tran concentrates on drawing to illustrate the process of self-reflection.
Khanhthuan Tran was born in Vietnam. He and his family immigrated to Halifax, Nova Scotia in the early ’80s. In 1999 he received a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design. In 2005, he received the local emerging artist award at Reel Asian.
Dir: Jenny Lin | Canada 2007 | Toronto Premiere | 5:23 | MiniDV
This quirky, animated work looks at the unique fashion and character of daily commuters in an urban transit system. Using rhythmic repetition and humour, Lin takes everyday observations and turns them into a dreaming state of mind.
Jenny Lin is a Montreal-based multidisciplinary artist who works with video, drawing, installation, and print media. She completed a BFA degree at the University of Calgary and an MFA at Concordia University. She is currently teaching at Concordia University as a medical illustrator.
Dir: Ho Tam | Canada 2007 | Toronto Premiere | 8:15 | Betacam SP
“All my life I’ve been looking for someone like you.” With the hypnotic ambience of a nightclub scene and the dreamy images of boys dancing, Tam’s analysis of how we identify with the language of love and desire takes classic pickup lines and uses them in oddly poetic subtexts.
Ho Tam currently teaches at the University of Victoria. He is a graduate of the Whitney Museum Independent Studies Program and the Bard College (MFA) and is the recipient of various fellowships and artists’ grants. In 2006, Tam was Reel Asian’s Canadian Spotlight artist.
Dir: Blair Fukumura | Canada 2008 | 4:00 | Betacam SP | Director In Attendance
In a playful collage of mid-1970s fashion and catalogue items, Catalogue makes a comparison between shopping through retro magazines and searching through contemporary personal advertisements online. With the convenience of websites such as Facebook, Fukumura questions if it is any easier to find what we want today.
Blair Fukumura was born in Winnipeg and studied stage design and theatre at the University of Winnipeg. Of Japanese, Scottish, and Irish descent, Blair’s background is in stage design and performance.
Machine With Wishbone
Dir: Randall Okita | Canada 2007 | 5:00 | Digibeta
In a live-action film featuring the work of Arthur Ganson, Okita uses innovative camera choreography, photo sculpture, and kinetic sculpture to tell the tale of a mechanical wishbone that has come to life. Machines and objects become characters in a spellbinding experience like nothing you have ever seen before.
Randall Okita was born and raised in Calgary, and is currently based in Vancouver. The grandson of West Coast Japanese Canadians and East Coast Irish Canadians, Okita celebrates a diversity of personal influences. Machine With Wishbone was made with the support of Bravo!FACT, the British Columbia Arts Council, and the National Film Board of Canada.
Dir: Stefanie Wong | Canada 2008 | Toronto Premiere 3:15 | 16mm | Director In Attendance
Sweet raindrop shapes, growing leaves, and dandelions in the wind are amazingly animated through embroidery. While Wong’s needle and thread follow an intense labour process, this animation delicately contemplates the passage of time.
Stefanie Wong graduated with a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Alberta College of Art + Design, Calgary. Her practice combines seemingly disparate media to examine our relationship with technology.
Dir: Asa Mori | Canada 2008 | Toronto Premiere | 4:20 | BetacamSP
A surreal Super 8 dream sequence unravels as a six-nippled creature finds herself trapped in a capsule with a dead rabbit and a bloody hole. With trusty rabbit ears, she taps her way through bizarre TV scenes: Japanese men on carousels, people in chickens suits with balloons, and disturbing garbage bags in bathtubs.
Asa Mori was born in Nagano, Japan, and currently lives in Vancouver. She acquired her first pet at the age of six, a rabbit called “House”. House died a week later. She has a BFA from the Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, primarily working with media installation and animation.