press release

An exhibition of international artists exploring drawn animation in collaboration with Animate Projects.

In this international group exhibition drawing, by nature in flux and mobile, is combined with animation techniques to create disjointed, deeply affecting narratives.

"For Adorno, the shudder is a primal component of experience, emerging just as humans began to conceptualise the world and differentiate themselves from amorphous nature …At moments in our 'damaged lives' particularly moments of true aesthetic encounter, genuine experience still occurs, and when it does, it does so with a shudder…". (Esther Leslie, essay for Shudder).

The exhibition includes three new co-commissions, by London-based artists Edwina Ashton and Ann Course and Canadian artist Barry Doupé. The works will premiere online on in January 2010, to coincide with the exhibition at The Drawing Room. The exhibition will also include new works by Avish Khebrehzadeh and Naoyuki Tsuji, the first London viewing of rare works by Matt Mullican and Raymond Pettibon and an outdoor screening of a dramatic animation by Markus Vater.

The animations in Shudder tap into the cartoon tradition of anthropomorphism, shocking violence and deep psychological impulses but resist its narrative impulse. The artists are interested in using animation to develop characters and to investigate personal states of mind or interpersonal relationships. The medium provides the necessary capacity for metamorphosis and startling juxtapositions.

The selected artists employ a diverse range of approach and a broad range of techniques. Their often painstakingly slow procedures dislocate perceived reality in order to reveal what lies underneath. The process of the making is laid bare, leading to the de-animation of real time and the animation of rumination. Sound is often an important component, adding a sense of foreboding or absurdity at odds with the image.

As Barry Doupé points out, "Commercial computer animation has been on an unsuccessful quest for humanistic realism, in that it often tries to reproduce the human form precisely". This exhibition exploits the capacity of drawing to bring characters to life, however basic they might be, a tradition much exploited through cartoons and caricature, and through simple animation techniques.

21 January, 19.00 Esther Leslie 'In Conversation' with Ann Course, Barry Doupé and Markus Vater at the Bridge Academy, Laburnum Street, E2 8BA

Co-commissioned by Animate Projects. Admission free, booking essential

A brochure is produced to accompany the exhibition with an essay by Esther Leslie (Professor in Political Aesthetics, Birkbeck, University of London and author of 'Hollywood Flatlands: Animation, Critical Theory and the Avant-garde', (2002), 'Synthetic Worlds: Nature, Art and the Chemical Industry', (2005), 'Walter Benjamin' (2007).

new commissions and exhibition
Kooperatiom mit Animate Projects 

Künstler: Edwina Ashton, Ann Course, Barry Doupé, Avish Khebrehzadeh, Matt Mullican, Raymond Pettibon, Naoyuki Tsuji, Markus Vater.