Lilla LoCurto & Bill Outcault

The willful marionette
the willful marionette (2014) was created by artists Lilla LoCurto and Bill Outcault during a residency with the University of North Carolina Charlotte, working with the College of Computing and Informatics as well as the College of Art and Architecture. The marionette is 3d printed from the scanned image of a human figure and responds engagingly in real time to spontaneous human gestures by reading a viewer’s movements and expressions. Its strings are manipulated by motors and software and there are two depth sensors that read and analyze the behaviors and gestures of participants. The puppet’s subsequent actions are designed to elicit further responses, creating an exchange focusing on the frailty and insecurities of the human participant and raising issues of contemporary relevance. The intention of the project was not to create so much a perfectly functioning robot but rather to imbue an obviously mechanically actuated marionette with the ability to solicit a physical and emotional dialog with a viewer.

Marcos Mauro

Pasionaria

Pasionaria represents the consequences of our current way of life, as conceived by choreographer Marcos Morau. A future where human beings would have lost their vitality through individualism and transhumanism. The gloomy universe of the spectacle thus seems sanitized of all affect, all passion, and consequently, humanity. All that remains is the labor force that is tirelessly busy vacuuming or handling packages of products. Ringing phones, doors or other objects constantly capture the attention of the protagonists who have become puppets. Manipulated by outside forces, instead of being driven by their deep desires, the humans of this dystopia merge into simple working robots.

Aurélien Bory

Plexus
pour Kaori Ito

Soms is dans gewoon wonderschoon. Een visueel hoogtepunt is de installatieperformance Plexus van regisseur Aurélien Bory en danseres Kaori Ito. Bory schiep met Plexus ‘een portret in dans’ van Ito. De Japanse danseres en choreografe studeerde klassieke dans in Tokio en moderne dans in de VS. Ze stond eerder in Julidans NEXT, het talentenpodium. Bory ontwierp een installatie van vijfduizend nylondraden die Ito omsluiten als een marionet.Beperkt door die ruimte verkent Ito haar mogelijkheden. Ze zweeft, danst, valt, draait rond. Haar spel is poëtisch en dromerig, maar tot in de perfectie uitgevoerd.

Kid Koala and K.K. Barret

NUFONIA MUST FALL
Kid Koala’s celebrated “live animated graphic novel”. Directed by oscar-nominated production designer K.K. Barrett (Her, Lost In Translation, Being John Malkovich). Performed, filmed, edited and scored in real time by a team of 15 performers including puppeteers, cinematographers, a string quartet and Kid Koala on piano/turntables. A romantic story about a robot on the verge of obsolescence.

OSKAR SCHLEMMER

أوسكار شليمر
奥斯卡·施莱默
אוסקר שלמר
オスカー·シュレンマー
오스카 슐 렘머
Оскар Шлеммер
Triadic Ballet
1-Margarete Hastings, Franz Schömbs, Georg Verden
1970
2-Super 16mm colour film, directed by Helmut Ammann.
Oskar Schlemmer saw the human body as a new artistic medium. He saw ballet and pantomimes as being free from the historical baggage of theater and opera and, therefore, capable of presenting his ideas of choreographed geometry, the man as a dancer, transformed by his costumes, moving in space. He saw the puppet and puppet movement as superior to that of the human, as this emphasized that the average of all art is artificial. This device could be expressed through stylized movements and the abstraction of the human body. Schlemmer saw the modern world being guided by two main currents, the mechanized (man as a machine and body as a mechanism) and the primordial impulse (the depths of creative urgency). He claimed that choreographed geometry offered a synthesis; the Dionysian and emotional origins of dance become rigid and Apollonian in its final form.

Gary Setzer

Generator
A story about a tourist drowning in the Mediterranean, the transition of the body from life to death, and a metaphor-laden sock puppet.

JAN SVANKMAJER

一月史云梅耶
ヤン·シュヴァンクマイエル
Ян Шванкмайер
Dimensions of dialogue

Surrealist genius Jan Svankmajer’s stop frame masterpiece ‘Moznosti dialogu’ (Dimensions of Dialogue) drew on his experience with puppetry, experimental theatre and his role in the Czechoslovakian Surrealist Group, to create an examination in three parts of how humans communicate and what can often go wrong.

Markus Schinwald

Multidisciplinary in his practice, Markus Schinwald alternately uses painting, video, photography, installation, performance, theater, dance and even the art of the puppeteer. From his training as a fashion designer, the artist has retained a keen interest in the human body, exploring its capabilities and limitations, both physically and psychologically.

Markus Schinwald

Animal Works
In his interdisciplinary work, encompassing video, performance, dance, theatre, painting, photography, installation, and even puppetry, Markus Schinwald creates mysterious and unsettling atmospheres that hint at their Viennese production context, through references to austere Biedermeier style or to psychoanalysis. His seminal studies in fashion left him with a wide interest in clothing and, furthermore, in the human body’s potential and limitations in both physical and psychological senses.

Tobias Stretch

Craco

Tobias Stretch channels the beauty and melancholia of Hauschka’s single “Craco” in his uncanny video filmed in Philadelphia’s answer to Brooklyn’s High Line, Reading Viaduct Park. With music videos for Radiohead, Crystal Fighters and Christopher Bono to his name, the Philly-based animator is known for his distinct aesthetic and method, pairing landscape photography with life-size stop-motion puppets. “I thought right from the beginning when I saw Tobias’s work that it has a mixture of analog and handmade elements and a surreal atmosphere. In my music you have similar elements,” says Hauschka himself, aka the German pianist and composer Volker Bertelmann, who headline’s London’s Union Chapel tonight as part of his European tour. Although best known as a 21st-Century protagonist of the prepared piano practice championed by John Cage, Bertelmann “left all the preparations at home” in order to work with a pure sound on this track. Named after the Italian ghost town,“Craco” is taken from his entropy-laced album Abandoned City and played to Stretch’s own fascination with urban decay. “The music was there beforehand, but I had a bowl of music and a bowl of names and I tried to pair them up. I think the music sounded not only like an abandoned place but also like a nostalgic place and that’s why I thought it was a great match.”

 

Tobias Stretch

Weird Fishes
Radiohead

Tobias Stretch made this beautiful and mesmerising stop motion animation for Radiohead’s track ‘Weird Fishes’. Tobias’ natural light stop motion technique conjures a phantasmagorical and intimate world. Grotesque yet endearing puppets traversing the hinterlands in some bizarre pilgrimage. Tactile and beautiful.

TAMAS WALICZKY

Marionettes
FILE FESTIVAL 

“Marionettes” is a seven-minute computer animation about collapse. Marionettes are controlled by strings: if there is no string, they collapse. Nobody animates the body. If nobody animates the body, it will be animated by natural forces. Mass. Gravity. Collision. Randomization. In this animation, the animator does not animate in traditional terms. Thus, we might say it is an anti-animation.
The forces that control the movements of the marionettes are calculated by physical simulation algorithms. Therefore, these movements are strictly mathematical ones. They are dramatic, too. They visualize collapse in its physical and – amazingly enough from puppets animated by machines – psychological sense.

Ralph Kistler & Jan M. Sieber

Monkey Business
file festival

A cuddly toy monkey, hanging on a wall like a Jumping Jack. With a friendly hello the puppet starts to react to the visitor’s movements and immediately apes every gesture with its arms and legs, its head and body. You can let the ape act smoothly or invite him to a wild dace.
But in a subtle way the monkey asks for another move you have never ever performed before. Playing the game you will lose control unconsciously and after the seductive encounter you might start wondering: What is all this monkey business about? Who pulls the strings?

THEODORE WATSON AND EMILY GOBEILLE

Puppet Parade

Martín Azúa

Puppet chair

FALLAS

The Spanish have a thing for mixing raging parties with patron saints, and Las Fallas comes with the added touch of fire in this celebration of all things pyro. The fiery event has taken place since the city’s pagan days and incorporates a myriad of traditions. One relates to San José – the Saint of Carpenters – who is celebrated on the spring equinox. The local carpenters used the occasion to burn their wooden winter candleholders, called candelabra. That tradition morphed into a good excuse to set stuff on fire. The festival is also a week of puppets as Valencia fills with several hundred strange, intricate and otherwise weird fallas propped up around the city. The wood and papier-mâché effigies are generally critical or humorous portrayals of events and figures. Some are so big they take months to construct, with locals competing with their neighbours in effigy-making matches.