Garage Screen: Punto y Raya Festival

Published 31.07.19 by norma in

Punto y Raya Festivalthe benchmark event for Abstract Film & Animation, arrives for the first time in Russia with the Best of PyR 2018 programme. The screening and presentation will be held on July 31 2019 at Garage Museum of Contemporary Art, located at the heart of Moscow.

The selection features the 18 finalist and awarded films in their latest edition in Poland, encompassing a remarkable variety of approaches and techniques, from hand-drawn animation with pen & paper to top-notch generative art; from traditional stop-motion or video-feedback, to silent 16mm film developed in matcha tea.

In a sense, the evolution of Abstract Film and Animation over the century resonates deeply with some of the main concerns in Russian pictorial traditions like Suprematism and Constructivism. When the sound and visual tracks work cohesively, viewers may be led to introspect or gaze beyond the film in search for poetry and meaning. By contrast, when artists probe their dissonance or produce constant novel situations, they can hijack the viewers’ senses and trap them inside the film from beginning to end. Many abstract animators explore the alchemy between these two approaches to develop their unique worlds and take their viewers on a trip that can neither be described or narrated, only experienced.

As Russian avant-garde artists Kazimir Malevitch and Aleksandr Rodchenko did over century ago, contemporary experimental animators and visual artists continue bringing new insights into the exploration of abstract composition, light, matter, and metaphor, forwarding their ever-timely discussion of what constitutes the artistic experience, what is reality, and what role should humans play in both realms.

Launched in 2007 by the Barcelonan non-profit association MAD, Punto y Raya invites people around the world to explore pure Form, Motion, Colour and Sound, avoiding direct representation. Thus, the event recaptures the spirit of Cinéma Pure and Absolute Film formulated by the European avant-garde in the 1920s, exploring this unique artform laying at the intersection between Fine Arts and Media.

The creative challenge was taken on by artists, filmmakers, designers, scientists, composers, architects, and students from varied disciplines and countries. Quickly gaining the recognition of the specialized press, in its twelve-year trajectory Punto y Raya continues agglutinating the broadest community in the genre and encompassing a creative platform through over 50 cities, consolidating itself as the world benchmark for Abstract Art in Motion.

The festival is hosted by Contemporary Art Museums and Art & Technology Centres. Their first editions took place in Spain at venues like CCCB Contemporary Art Centre, Arts Santa Mònica, La Casa Encendida and Reina Sofia National Museum. Always transcending cultural barriers in search for the universal language of Abstraction, since 2014 the event has been coproduced and hosted in a different country each time. To this date: HARPA Concert Hall in Reykjavík

(2014·IS), ZKM Centre for Art & Media in Karlsruhe (2016·DE), and CeTA Audiovisual Technology Centre in Wroclaw (2018/9·PL).

Aside from the main event -the biannual Punto y Raya Festival-, the organisers offer their community other meeting points: PyR Academy is a four-day International Symposium with the participation of major professionals in the field; PyR Junior features the same contents, but produced BY children under 13 years of age, and PyR TV is an online Catalogue and Resource Centre that grants access to over thousand films and artists’ bios all year round.

The Best of Punto y Raya 2018 programme features the finalist and awarded films in their seventh edition, which run the past October at CeTA in Wroclaw, Poland. The included 18 titles from 13 countries will be screened in FULL HD, with a total runtime of 73’.

ABOUT THE FILMS IN THE PROGRAMME:

#1. The Time Tunnel Remix by Dirk Koy (2015, CH) is a vertiginous ride through circular compositions built from 250 cropped photos of wheel rims. Boosted by Boris Blank’s song, the hypnotic spinning motion draws the viewer into a whirlpool of sensations, that either spring out or sink deeper into the screen.

#2. The Moscow-based duo Stain continue developing their visual music explorations with Discretization (2018, RU). This mesmerizing film explores the limits between continuum and quantised space and sound, exploring the evasive nature of reality and our perception of it. When does a sequence of dots become a line, when do fast-paced sonic pulses become a tune? Scale and resolution seem to be key elements when reflecting upon these questions.

#3. From the Basque Country arrives Snowflakes by Aitor Oñedera Aguirre (2018, ES), an analogue pixelated film created from hand-drawn geometric and organic shapes coloured with acrylic. The curious and playful compositions, brought together in digital postproduction with rhythmic patterns of African inspiration, seek to induce some kind of ‘ancestral psychedelia’ in the viewer.

#4. Espen Tversland’s expanded painting explores the relationship between man and nature. In Mesophase (2018, NO) the out worldly -and at the same time, eerily familiar- swaying textures and colours engulf the viewer in a fully sensorial experience. Inner and outer space break down into an infinite, multi-layered membrane of an organic fiery entity. At times, it may suggest a comforting fuzzy skin; others, the pits of hell or warm-blooded existential Angst.

#5. Geist (UK, 2018) by Matt Abbiss brings back with full force the power of minimal black & white hand-drawn visual music, recreating with a stylus on a Wacom tablet, the look and feel of the earliest experiments traditionally drawn or scratched on film. The fantastic expressiveness of this accomplished work, set to a drums solo by Steve Gadd, suggests playful characters and narratives that guarantee pure joy for all audiences.

#6. Victoria Bylin proposes a rhythmic exploration of organic versus inorganic processes in her Function (2018, US). This hypnotic animation, with a very particular colour-palette and minimal shapes waving gently in a seemingly weightless universe, is masterfully complemented with an ambient score that emphasises the oneiric character of the landscape.

#7. In Sobling by Sune Petersen (2017·DK), an invisible circle creates a constant pulse that feeds a visual feedback loop, which in turn creates images that evolve organically. This feedback loop is continuously modified to create the overall structure. From signal to noise, from structure to seeming chaos, this film offers an intense and ever-changing experience, impossible to anticipate given the non-deterministic character of the system behind it.

#8. Awarded the Jury Second Prize + Audience Award, 25/25 (2018, PL) by the KinoManual duo, is a playful animation drawn by hand at 25 frames per second. Each drawing consists of micro- actions with their own sonic counterpart. The 1-second loops are skilfully introduced to the audience surrounded by an air of mystery and expectation. Seamlessly, they build up and lead us from the contemplation of each separate component to the absorption of the final composition in its full glory.

#9. The devastating Little Boy (2018, NO) by Kristian Pedersen is named after the atomic bomb thrown on Hiroshima in 1945. In its forceful and impeccable execution, this work is a perfect example of the evocative power of abstract imagery and sound design. An intimate and unique experience for each viewer, the film arouses the senses and appeals to the gut, as we inwardly recollect one of the most nefarious incidents in human history.

#10. Sillon 672 (2015, FR) by Bastien Dupriez was skilfully hand-drawn on vinyl records to the rhythm of a composition by Antoine Zuccarelli. Poetically reflecting on the intrinsic relationship between abstract imagery and music, the artist makes the most of the vinyl tracks’ textures, as his hand-painted shape & colour compositions spin and increase in complexity using various digital compositing techniques.

#11. Shusaku Kaji’s The Big Note (2018, JP) reflects on the nature of the moving image and the construction of space, focusing its attention on the processes of Oscillation and Evolution. The first oscillation in the film causes a gradation, which in turn calls for more oscillations, thus pushing the system forward. The experimental soundtrack adds new dimensions to the organic, glitchy forms, and help the overall structure break out from the two-dimensional screen.

#12. For his Katagami (2016, JP), Michael Lyons photographed and re-photographed kimono stencils and developed the film with matcha tea. The small variations in the repeating patterns, in conjunction with the flickering effect between positive and negative image, generate apparent motion. This masterful silent work was awarded the Jury Honourable Mention.

#13. Fascinated by brutalist architecture, Peter Tomaszewicz brought together two of his motion studies on matter and structure under the title Silent Aesthetics + States of Matter (2018, UK).

 

Solid, liquid, gas. The three states of matter and their phase change, as recreated through top- notch animation, allow the artist to endow the very realistic and ‘concrete’ spaces with a highly graphic and abstract feel, suggesting an underlying dystopian narrative.

#14. Rainer Kohlberger keeps mesmerising audiences with his breath-taking algorithmically generated graphics. Keep that Dream Burning (2017, AT) is an overpowering experience that transports the viewer from granular textures springing from the vacuum of space to cosmic artefacts and mega-structures; from seeming chaotic motion in multi-dimensional static, to hidden footage of explosions and debris. Taken to the limit by the humming and pulsating soundtrack, this film is a consummate poem at the edge of noise and meaning, materialising on the screen our inner space, and blurring the boundaries between what our overexcited eyes perceive and what our brains produce in response to it.

#15. Awarded the Jury Third Prize for his Arena (2018, IR), Páraic McGloughlin proposes a different approach to abstract imagery and composition. His film is built from the quick succession of thousands of Google Earth images, shot from kilometres away. The flatten natural and man-made structures are thus endowed with an abstract quality that focuses our attention on the pure shape & colour compositions, as each image leads to the next through clever formal relations.

#16. Quantum Fluctuations (2017, UK) by Markos Kay shows the complexity and transient nature of the most fundamental aspect of reality: the quantum world, which is impossible to observe directly. Making use of input from scientists at CERN in Geneva, particle simulations are used as the brush and paint to create abstract moving paintings, which seek to visualize the events that happen during a proton collision at the Large Hadron Collider.

#17. Nikita Liskov’s Energy off (2017, UA) pays homage to Energy, exploring the evocative power of texture, light and motion through black & white painted gestures. Based on the soundtrack by Bryan Eubanks and Jason Kahn, the film takes the viewer for a lovely ride through abstract mindscapes at the edge between night and day, heaven and earth, inner and outer space.

#18. We conclude with the Jury First Prize: Study in Colour and Form I-IV (2015, UK) by Jonathan Gillie. This masterful series of studies uses a combination of analogue and digital moving image techniques to reflect upon the essence of form, colour and motion. Structurally, the animations engage a multi layered, quickly strobing succession of semi-constructed images, a technique that often relies on the persistence of image, the after-image retained briefly on viewing an object. In this sense, the final work is constructed fully within the eye of the viewer rather than the surface of the projection screen. 

Tickets https://garagemca.org/en/event/garage-screen-punto-y-raya-abstract-film-animation-festival

For the second year running, Garage Screen summer season is presented in partnership with an online plattform Farfetch.

Garage Screen - summer cinema of Garage Museum.

Garage Museum of Contemporary Art is situated in Gorky Park on the left side from the Central Alley.

 

9/32 Krymsky Val st., 119049, Moscow, Russia 

https://garagemca.org/en