Experimental animation doesn’t get enough love, but it’s an incredibly exciting, historically rich part of cinema. The Criterion Channel currently has a great lineup of such films from around the world, nearly all of which are worth checking out if you want animation made outside the mainstream. And here are three more films which animate everyday objects, create hallucinatory landscapes, and do more outside what we usually expect of cartoons.
Suzan Pitt’s groundbreaking short is a delicious, at times raunchy daydream. The title veggie features as a sexual, oneiric object whose powers invade both a woman’s house and a local theater she visits, entrancing an unsuspecting audience. Pitt brought her background in painting to her animation, incorporating intense fluid lines and dense colors. They flesh out her wicked feminist-tinged humor in immensely satisfying ways.
The Franco-Polish bad boy of directors, Walerian Borowczyk is most infamous for his erotic costume dramas like Immoral Tales (1973), but he was also a pioneer in European illustration and animation. In this masterful black-and-white stop-motion short, ordinary objects — a doll, a trumpet, a stuffed owl — emerge from ashes and become animate, only to decompose again. It’s hard not to read the somber metaphor for post-World War II Europe.
Circumstantial Pleasures (2020)
Lewis Klahr is one of the most renowned living independent American animators, turning collages of imagery from many different sources into allegorical stories. This episodic feature is a reeling look at late capitalism, featuring recurring motifs like waddled dollar bills and numbers, pulsating dots, ordinary objects, and cutout figures from cartoons à la Lichtenstein. In the chapter Ratchet the margin, a parade of alluring food brands underscores how essential goods, such as food and medical care, are now branded commodities.
Arriving amid increased anti-Asian racism and continuing discourse about the inhumanity of its prison system, this documentary is a strong historical gut punch.
A “show within a show” at the Whitney Biennial pays homage to the visual and literary art of Theresa Hak Kyung Cha, whose life was cut short through an act of brutal violence.
The Newark Museum of Art Presents Jazz Greats: Classic Photographs from the Bank of America Collection
Photographers Antony Armstrong Jones, Milt Hinton, Chuck Stewart, Barbara Morgan, and more capture a breadth of legendary and local musicians and performance artists. On view through August 21.
Social media persona Sad Beige Werner Herzog presents a seemingly endless array of sniffling tots stuffed into gray, brown, and tan knits.
A new Bronx location for the Universal Hip Hop Museum is set to open its doors in 2024.
Art and photographs, publications from the 19th and 20th centuries, manuscripts, posters and more are set to cross the auction block on August 18.
Researchers at the University of South Florida have created a tool that can potentially help hone human concentration through the creation of art with only the power of the mind.
The settlement comes after Tate prevented an artist who exposed sexual harassment by one of its largest donors from co-curating an exhibition.
Let’s be honest: On a best bathrooms list, no one wants to be number two.
Advocacy groups are pushing for a 5% royalty in resales, which would pertain even after the artist dies, in which case the funds would go to their estate.
This week, the Getty Museum is returning ancient terracottas to Italy, parsing an antisemitic mural at Documenta, an ancient gold find in Denmark, a new puritanism, slavery in early Christianity, and much more.