February theme: Animation and Invisibility

Deadline: January 31st, 2018


February’s theme explores the existing relationships between animation and invisibility. From imaginary entities as ghosts and spirits to abstract concepts and feelings, from what has remained uncaptured by a camera to the immaterial or the infinitesimally small, anything that is (or would risk to remain) invisible can be visualized through animation, thanks to the latter’s ability to transcend reality. In other words, animation can be used to give representation both to the unfilmed and the unfilmable, a fact that for instance has brought this medium to be used by filmmakers always more often in nonfictional contexts to overcome the limitations live-action cameras impose.

Moreover, animation has also been employed to reflect on invisibility broadly intended by tackling social marginalization, integration difficulties and other related issues.

Finally, this medium can in itself be made “invisible”. That is, it can be integrated in the website or in the film in which it is employed so as to not be perceived as animation by the user or the viewer of that set website or movie, as it can be the case of interface animation or of visual effects.

We thus invite contributions that consider how animation relates to invisibility in any of the above mentioned senses.

Topics may include, but are not limited to:

  • Ghosts, spirits and animation;
  • Animated characters with the ability to turn invisible;
  • The animated documentary and the representation of invisible realities;
  • Animation as masking (e.g. to protect the anonymity of a documentary subject);
  • Animating scientific and mathematical concepts;
  • The representation of air, gas, light, electricity or other immaterial elements through animation;
  • Marginalization, exclusion or integration difficulties in animated films;
  • The unrepresented or underrepresented in animated works;
  • Making visible feelings and emotions through animation;
  • Interface animation as “invisible animation”;
  • VFX and invisibility.

Posts of between 600 and 900 words, which discuss any aspect of the above topic are welcome. Contributors are encouraged to include clips and at least one image to support their posts. Please also include a short bio and 3 keywords. All permissions are the responsibility of the contributor. Please contact the editors Nichola Dobson (nichola_dobson@yahoo.co.uk) and Cristina Formenti (cristina.formenti@unimi.it) with submissions or questions.