Tuesday, June 3, 2014



b. June 2, 1899, Charlottenburg, Germany

d. June 19, 1981, Dettenhausen, Germany

Charlotte "Lotte" Reiniger was a German film director and the foremost pioneer of silhouette animation, anticipating Walt Disney by over 10 years. Reiniger made over 40 films over the span of her career, all using her invention.Wikipedia

Full-lenth Feature Film:  Prince Achmed

Animation Short:  Hansel and Gretel

Thursday, May 29, 2014


"I'm not a politician. I don't know how to solve the problems of the world. 
But as an artist, I have one duty: to ask questions." -Marjane Satrapi
Bestselling Artist/Illustrator and Filmmaker,
Author of Persepolis: The Story of a Childhood

Marjane Satrapi was born in in Rasht, Iran, on the edge of the Caspian Sea. She grew up in Tehran, where she studied at the Lycée Français, before leaving for Vienna and, later, Strasbourg to study Decorative Arts.

In 1997, Satrapi moved to Paris, where she met Christophe Blain, who brought her into l’Atelier des Vosges, home to many of France’s celebrated “new wave” of comic book artists. There, she regaled her fellow artists with amazing stories of her family—stories of dethroned emperors, suicidal uncles, state-sanctioned whippings, and heroes of the revolution—in short, the details of daily life in contemporary Iran. After listening to her stories and seeing her drawings, they kept asking why she was waiting to put her life in the pages of a comic book. 
Source:  barclayangency.com


Embroideries gathers together Marjane’s tough–talking grandmother, stoic mother, glamorous and eccentric aunt and their friends and neighbors for an afternoon of tea drinking and talking. Naturally, the subject turns to love, sex and the vagaries of men.

paperback version

Chicken and Plums
Chicken with Plums centers on an Iranian musician who wills himself to die. Yet the story that then unfolds, mostly in flashback, could hardly be more vital and engaging.

A former concert violinist, protagonist Nasser Ali chooses to perish early in the movie, which then circles back to explain his despair. Not even the title dish, his favorite meal, can lure him from his self-made appointment with the angel of death.

The movie was adapted by Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Paronnaud from Satrapi’s graphic novel. The same team brought Persepolis to the screen with animated renderings of Satrapi's drawings. For this tale, which is based on a Satrapi family legend yet has wider implications, the duo largely forgoes the graphic approach in favor of live action.

The Sigh
Satrapi's illustrated fairy tale. Rose is one of three daughters of a rich merchant who always brings gifts for his girls from the market. One day Rose asks for the seed of a blue bean, but he fails to find one for her. She lets out a sigh in resignation, and her sigh attracts the Sigh, a mysterious being that brings the seed she desired to the merchant. But every debt has to be paid, and every gift has a price, and the Sigh returns a year later to take the merchant's daughter to a secret and distant palace.

Monsters are Afraid of the Dark
One of several children's books
Every night as Marie climbed into bed, she got a visit from three monsters. They only came out in darkness, so she knew they must be afraid of the light. Marie took a huge pair of scissors, and cutting the moon out of the sky, hung it right in her bedroom. No darkness, no monsters!


Marjane Satrapi and Vincent Parannoud
Collaboration team on the film adaptations of Persepolis and Chicken with Plums


"...unfortunately you know, most of the people, they consider animation 
much like comedies, as a genre. 
It's not a genre. It's just a medium."  --Marjane Satrapi

Chicken with Plums
 The heartrending story of her great-uncle, a celebrated Iranian musician who gave up his life for music and love.

"I edit four times. Edit, then don't see the film for two weeks - and then edit it again. 
Every time you see something for a long time, you are convinced that it works, 
then you get some distance and look at it again and you realize, 'This is not working'." 
--Marjane Satrapi

Gang of Jotas
A luggage mix-up at the airport brings together the lives of two friends 
preparing for a badminton tournament with a woman on the run from a gang 
who killed her sister.

The Voices
coming soon-2014
A disturbed factory worker who hears advice from his pet dog and cat 
is implicated in the accidental death of his co-worker.


Marjane Satrapi had her first painting exhibition in January 2013 

at the Galerie Jerôme de Noirmont. (France)

Monday, May 26, 2014


b. 1976 in Oss, Netherlands
Lives and works in Amsterdam

by Amanda Erlanson--Los Angeles, June 2011

Chris Berens grew up near the historic Netherlands city of ‘s-Hertogenbosch, steeped in the atmosphere exalted by painters like Rembrandt and Vermeer. From an early age, he was immersed in his own inner world, a luminous realm inhabited by enigmatic characters and menageries of strange, compelling creatures. After studying illustration at the Academy of Art and Design in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, he retired to an abandoned building near his hometown and proceeded to teach himself the techniques of the Old Masters, consumed with a desire to document the wondrous narrative unfolding within him. Eventually he set aside his oil paints and began experimenting with drawing inks, a fluid medium which allowed greater flexibility than oils, as well as spectacular distortion effects reminiscent of the view through an ancient handmade lens. When he was able to depict his visions with some degree of accuracy, he moved to Amsterdam, and in 2005 began exhibiting at the venerable Jaski Gallery. After four successful shows in Amsterdam, he released the book 2239, and then moved on to conquer the New World. His 2008 American debut, “Go West,” followed the shambolic journey of his internal universe across the North Pole to the show’s venue in Seattle. Since then, Berens has continued to paint with a passionate fervor, resulting in a remarkable evolution in his technique and three more triumphal exhibitions. In his most recent work, he wraps his visionary mythology around an epic saga about the arrival of his first child, Emma Leeuwenhart.

Studio View-1

In short:
All paintings are 180 grams A4  inkjet paper sheets, hand painted on with mainly drawing inks. Also used: bistre and graphite. The paper consists of 3 layers: an emulsion, a plastic coating and a paper underlayer. The emulsion swells up when in contact with the inks and will slowly dry up. This process is repeated with each thin layer of ink that is added. The plastic coating has a fine grid in which the dried up inks and emulsion will set. Inks and emulsion can be manipulated into the grid.

Studio View-2

  • The painted area of the sheets are covered with a thin layer of several types of coating varnish.
  • The paper part of the sheet is seperated from and (partially) washed off the plastic layer.
  • The back of the plastic sheet is painted with white ink. Parts opaque, parts transparent and parts left untouched.
  • Elements of the sheet are selected, cut and mounted on wooden panel with bookbinder's glue.
  • A thin layer of alkyd coating varnish is added.
  • The ritual is repeated.

Studio View-3

The final paintings are finished with 3 layers of parkquet lacquer

Berens is extremely generous with sharing his work and his process which is a unique one.  He is such a prolific painter, and shares a vast collection of his work on the internet.  You are encouraged to check it out.  Below are links.  If you click on the catalog/poster of one of his shows, it will take you to a page that shows that body of work.  Included directly beneath the cover is one image from that particular show/collection.  You will see some more of his work after the video, "Interview..." as well. Remember: click on the show cover--you will recognize it because it has text.

In C
mol en eend


de ballade van de vierde mol

The Heaven Show

her majesty (mr. sniffles)


Just Above the Well




Go West
GO WEST--cover

Checkpoint 49

The Only Living Boy in New York

Ally Springs

White Ones

Light (As It Began)


Awaiting the Procession

Mapping Infinity



Cloud Over Nieuwmarkt


Cold December Morning

Interview with Chris Berens on Process

OTHER WORKS 2007-2013


The New One

The Big One (Moving On)

Blond in the Soul

Panic of Girls


How To Catch a Tidal Wave

Valley of the Lost and Found