PICTOPLASMA NYC 2016
Conference on Contemporary Character Design and Art
November 4th, 2016
Parsons School of Design
The Auditorium, Alvin Johnson/J.M. Kaplan Hall
The New School
66 West 12th Street
New York, NY 10011
***Please note there are a limited number of FREE seats for New School students, faculty and staff, but you must RSVP HERE. Once we’ve reached capacity the RSVP form will shut down. But you can find details on purchasing tickets at http://nyc.pictoplasma.com
Pictoplasma returns to New York City with a dense program of inspiring artist talks, state of the art animation screenings and lively panel discussions to celebrate the next generation of character design and art! Taking place November 4th at The Auditorium of renown Parsons School of Design, the conference invites artists, producers, animators, illustrators, character designers and all creatively curious, to network and exchange strategies for tomorrow’s visual culture.
Speakers include graphic artist and illustration master-mind Jean Jullien (FR), whose iconic ’Peace for Paris’ symbol became an instant global meme; children’s book author and illustrator You Jung Byun (US), known for her detailed narrative and commissioned work inhabited by strange beasts and lost children; everyone’s favorite gif-wunderkind Julian Glander (US), creator of bubblegum-colored digital illustration, indie games and interactive artwork, all subsumed under the catchword ‘digital toys’; animator, writer, and producer Ben Bocquelet (FR), creator of the famed animation series ‘The Amazing World of Gumball‘; Martina Paukova (SK), illustrator with an incredibly fast-paced career, whose jam-packed images in a trademark palette and Memphis-inspired patterns mirror our mundane lives in the digital age; and Jaime Álvarez, renown for his 3D rendered Mr. Kat (PE) universe, fusing pre-Columbian with contemporary kawaii aesthetics.
The conference is co-hosted by Parsons School of Design and organized by Pictoplasma, the Berlin based annual Uber-Festival for Contemporary Character Design and Art. Prior to the conference’s 5th return to NYC, the Pictoplasma Academy will be hosting a week-long intense Character Design Development course in Mexico City.
We are pleased to announce that Assistant Professor of Parsons Illustration Lauren Redniss has been awarded a fellowship with New America.
The New America Fellows program supports thinkers—journalists, producers, practitioners, and scholars—whose work enhances the public conversation about the most pressing issues of our day. The full roster of 2017 fellows can be found here.
“I am pleased to welcome this latest class of fellows to New America,” Peter Bergen, New America vice president and Fellows program director, said. “The work this group of fellows will produce embodies the core values of New America. Their journalism and scholarship communicates with broad audiences, changes the way we think about policy, and represents a diversity of backgrounds and expertise.”
Lauren Redniss, a writer and artist, will work on a visual nonfiction book that tackles the question of environmental stewardship and the struggle of indigenous communities in the 21st century American Southwest. She has been a Guggenheim fellow and Artist-in-Residence at the American Museum of Natural History. Her most recent book, Thunder & Lightning: Weather Past, Present, Future won the PEN/E.O. Wilson Literary Science Writing Award. She was a finalist for the National Book Award for Radioactive: Marie & Pierre Curie, A Tale of Love and Fallout, and is also the author of Century Girl: 100 Years in the Life of Doris Eaton Travis, Last Living Star of the Ziegfeld Follies.
Arta Ajeti’s work, (senior in the Illustration program) was selected as the inaugural artist for a new regular column in the Sunday Review section of the Times, which will feature columns written and illustrated by college students.
Read the full article and see Arta’s work here.
AMT faculty Jess Irish will debut her animated film lyric, The Phantasmagoria of Offense: the male version this Thursday, July 7th at 7pm at The Center (208 W. 13th St Room 310 New York, NY 10011).
Open to the public.
The Phantasmagoria of Offense is an animated film lyric by Jess Irish on the danger of image suppression. In this “male version” these images are limited to the male body and the cultural anxiety around expressions of vulnerability, homosexual desire or questioning the dominant paradigm. The political ramifications of image suppression during the AIDS crisis in the 1980s is questioned alongside the well-intended requests for “trigger warnings.” If there is a take away message, it is that censorship is not an abstraction. It has a body count.
July 6, 8pm
Orientation Room (“Bark” room) M104
2 West 13th Street, lobby level
New York, NY 10003
FREE! (seating is limited, first come, first served)
“Bugs”—the debut feature film from performance artists Life of a Craphead—is a satire about a bug society and its most powerful family.
“Bugs is one of the strangest, funniest, most mystifying and most profound contemporary films I know.”
“Bugs lets loose theatre, comedy and some great outsiders into the streets of Toronto. It simply reclaims and renames all found there — a familiar world that is completely new and already dirty. It is hard not to leave the cinema with changed eyes, seeing all that is Bugs when you are back out in the streets.”
Books of Wonder is delighted to host the launch party for EVAN TURK‘s debut work as BOTH author and illustrator. You and your young readers and listeners won’t want to miss The Storyteller, an original folktale that celebrates the power of stories and storytelling by this 2015 Ezra Jack Keats New Illustrator Honor recipient.
Long, long ago, like a pearl around a grain of sand, the Kingdom of Morocco formed at the edge of the great, dry Sahara. It had fountains of cool, refreshing water to quench the thirst of the desert, and storytellers to bring the people together.
But as the kingdom grew, the people forgot the dangers of the desert, and they forgot about the storytellers, too. All but one young boy, who came to the Great Square for a drink and found something that quenched his thirst even better: wonderful stories. As he listened to the last storyteller recount the Endless Drought, and the Glorious Blue Water Bird, he discovered the power of a tale well told.
Acclaimed illustrator EVAN TURK has created a stunning multidimensional story within a story that will captivate the imagination and inspire a new generation of young storytellers. So make sure you’re here on Thursday, June 30th when you can meet EVAN TURK and have him sign copies of all of his wonderful picture books! Ages 3-6. Thursday, June 30th, 6-8pm.
Rising senior and Zankel scholar finalist, Elena Lloyd, had her first illustration published in the NYTimes Sunday review this past Sunday.
Festival + Conference + Business Symposium + Career Fair
Celebrating Inspiration & Innovation in the World of Animation
From October 20 to 23, Spark CG will host the 9th annual SPARK ANIMATION Festival. Part conference and part festival, SPARK ANIMATION thrives on bringing together industry experts with newcomers, and that principle extends into the festival which provides a showcase for both established filmmakers and fresh new talent, and over the years has included a number of projects which have gone on to win Academy Awards – most recently Bear Story which won the Oscar for Animated Short Film and which played SPARK ANIMATION in 2014. Visit our archive for previous editions of the festival.
With an eclectic mix of styles, languages and a Jury of world class talent, SPARK ANIMATION has become the premiere animation festival in Vancouver!
SPARK ANIMATION 2016 will feature a series of regional, national and international short and feature films, filmmaker workshops and mixers.
We are looking for animated projects from all over the world:
• Animated Feature Films
• Animated Short Films
• Animated Student Projects
• Animated Music Videos
• Animated Commercials & PSA
• Game Cinematics & Trailers
• Computer animation (2D & 3D)
• Traditional animation
• Stop-motion animation
Festival: October 20 – 23
Conference: October 21 – 22
Business Symposium: October 21
Career Fair: October 22
Join us for this annual exhibition of work by Seniors in the BFA Illustration program. Thesis projects in illustration, comics, picture-books, illuminated objects and animation will be on display.
2 West 13th St, 8th Floor
10:00am – 9:00pm, open to the public
Reception 5:00pm – 8:00pm
5 pm: Book Launch for “Recess,” this year’s edition of Words & Pictures, a journal of visual-narrative essays featuring work by senior class members. Join us for a celebration of the accomplishments of these graduating students.
6 pm: Welcoming remarks.
Read this great Mashable article on 2000/01 Parsons BFA illustration grads!
Peraza was an asylum seeker from Cuba, arriving in Miami as a child in 1984. Zeltser was a religious refugee from Ukraine who landed in New York as a teenager in 1993. The two met on the first day of classes at the New School’s Parsons School of Design in New York City in 1996.
“I was an annoying, arrogant loudmouth,” says Peraza, who has a healthy swath of hair on top of his otherwise closely shaved head. “Julia’s more studious, the good kid.”
While at Parsons, they discovered a healthy competitiveness and a shared drive to succeed, which they attribute to being immigrants.
“You just don’t take shit for granted,” Peraza says, noting the many “rich kids” who simply cruised by. “Every opportunity we got, we busted our butt to do it.”
Situated in Brooklyn’s Gowanus neighborhood, blocks away from a Whole Foods and the Morbid Anatomy Museum of death-obsessed hipsterdom, the cavernous storefront of social impact design studio Hyperakt stands out.
The open studio is quiet — the only sound comes from the humming tubular vents overhead and a handful of staff who confer in whispers. Most of the others focus quietly on their iMac screens.
Unlike stereotypically pristine, carefully curated design studios, Hyperakt’s space is a little more freewheeling. Utilitarian shelving units are haphazardly packed with supplies; dark, reclaimed wood desks with metal legs are pushed together to form long working spaces, flanked by contemporary office chairs on wheels.
Founded in 2001, Hyperakt’s 15-person team has focused on social impact design since 2009, when its cofounders, designers Deroy Peraza and Julia Zeltser, phased out the types of clients who needed things like dog leash branding or Camel cigarette ads in Spanish.
For the past seven years they have worked exclusively for NGOs, nonprofits and other social good organizations.
“It’s really satisfying to see memberships increase, donations increase and the caliber of volunteers rise,” Zeltser tells Mashable, decked out in a colorful woolly sweater and scarf of magentas and reds.
Hyperakt leapt into the social good sector full-force because it’s where the team created its best work.
Zeltser cites one client as a good example: educational nonprofit iMentor, which they’re currently helping to rebrand their mentorship program. Other clients include big names like the Ford Foundation, United Nations, NAACP, and Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation.
Sitting in Hyperakt’s conference room, moments after Zeltser shrieked with laughter when Peraza rustled up an old Camel ad they made, they reveal their two essential and successful marketing tools.
First is the active creation of community, both virtually and physically; for example, their once-a-month Lunch Talk series holds free and public forums among creative people, “designed to foster knowledge, sharing and casual conversation” over food and beer.
Second is spending time and resources on experimental, self-generated projects, which often go viral or land on design blogs and magazine pages. In 2008 they created posters in support of then-Senator Barack Obama that led to an exhibit at Flux Laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland. Hyperakt also took a challenge in 2013 to rebrand the teaching profession, an assignment from Kurt Anderson, the host of radio show Studio 360. And a noteworthy work in progress is On the Grid, a neighborhood guide for cities around the globe created in collaboration with local design studios.
Clearing her throat, Zeltser teases Peraza that she usually works on the jobs that bring in income, while he gets to experiment with viral hits like these.
“It’s the self-generated stuff that gets all the attention,” he counters, sounding slightly defensive.
The Refugee Project is one of these self-generated assignments. The team initially saw the U.N.’s refugee data in 2012, and while it was compelling, it was presented in such a dull manner that it might speak to academics but no one else.
So they collaborated with information designer and artist Ekene Ijeoma on The Refugee Project to allow users to easily see the exact number of refugees to and from countries by year. Ijeoma notes that in the past, photographs, rather than visualized data, have been used to communicate such social issues.
“But you can only see what’s in the frame,” he says. Data, he adds, provides a more expansive story.
The Refugee Project caught the eye of the Annenberg Space for Photography’s curators, and will be part of the upcoming show in Los Angeles called New Americans, in conjunction with an exhibit called “Refugee,” which opens on April 23. The Refugee Project will be projected on huge screens and remain interactive, providing historical context to the exhibit.