Presente at the 31th Annual Conference of the Society of Animation Studies: Animation is a place, Lusofona University, Lisbon, Portugal, 2019.
In contemporary moving-image culture, dominated by digital technologies and governed by the aesthetics of computer generated imagery, traditional animation techniques are increasingly overthrown and neglected. In this sense, “a line drawn is no longer a line, but mathematical data in the memory of the computer.” This domineering aesthetic, at best, evokes the interest in revival of some traditional animation techniques (i.e. puppet and hand-dawn animation). However, technological advancements push the boundaries of these techniques, along with the danger to transform them into too smooth, perfect and generic, removing the traces of their tangible hand-made quality.
This paper puts an emphasis on the haptic quality of traditional animation techniques, aiming to explore how can they be applied in novels ways, in another context, outside the cinema setting. What qualities can these techniques add to enhance the spatial storytelling experience? How does the transposition of these techniques to spaces beyond the screen, along, with the mare change of scale of projection, affect the viewer? The paper puts forward an idea that the visceral and visual qualities, and the mies-en-scene in this conditions elicit not only immersion in the spatial context but propel and enhance the narrative qualities of these works, highlighting their materiality, ephemeral and imperfect aesthetic quality as a strength.
Keywords: traditional animation techniques, handmade animation, materiality, storytelling, animation aesthetic, expanded animation, animation beyond the screen