Animation & Contemporary Art
Artist in residence 2021: visual artist Gerco de Ruijter (NL)
Animation is a versatile art form that has various applications. An exciting contemporary application can be found in the visual arts, at the interface with cinema. Countryside Animafest Cyprus presents the second edition of the Animation & Contemporary Art program in 2021, with a residency of the Dutch artist Gerco de Ruijter.
Gerco de Ruijter works with photography and film. The artist has earned his spurs in the field of documentary art films. His work shows a personal style, his landscape films are one of a kind. His art explores how far the presentation of the landscape can be reduced and yet still remain recognisable.
He has had numerous solo and group exhibitions both in the Netherlands and elsewhere and his work is included in several important private and public collections.
In the late 1980s De Ruijter started using kites and balloons to create images of situations far from our point of view. Since 2012 he has been mining Google Earth as a source, resulting in films like Crops (2013) on centre pivot irrigation in the USA, using over 1000 circles, and Playground (2014) on American Football fields, starting from an abstract series of pictures of field lines with identical measurements. These films are abstractly organized around a single theme and a point of view taken vertically from the air. In the installation Dissolve (2017) he tilted the familiar presentation of the shore of a mountain lake in a vertical panorama, from the early morning darkness to nightfall.
The residence of Gerco de Ruijter will take place in July 2021 in the city of Nicosia and the village of Salamiou, where the 20th Countryside Animafest Cyprus will take place from 11-14 August 2021. Gerco de Ruijter will show the result of his work at the festival in Salamiou in August and in Nicosia in October.
Take a look at Gerco de Ruijter's site to get an impression of his oeuvre (gercoderuijter.com).
Animation & Contemporary Art 2019
LIU Yi Solo Project: Aliens and Immigration Office – Soup Salad Pasta Pizza
Countryside Animafest Cyprus gained good experience in 2019 with the Animation & Contemporary Art program, with an international exhibition of animation installations and an artist in residency. Cinematic freebooting is a condition for a flourishing film culture. Free use of the possibilities of animated film and spatial or performance art and their inspirational interplay yields a unique visual language and presentation.
LIU Yi, a young artist from China, kicked off the artist in residency program in 2019. She is a versatile artist who moves effortlessly between different art forms. She uses animation, live-action film, installation, painting, sculpture and performance to find the most accurate way to transmit her art. For the residency she spent a month in Cyprus, based in the hospitable village Salamiou, which is situated in the mountainous inland of Paphos district. During the Countryside Animafest Cyprus from 24-27 July she presented the exhibition LIU Yi Solo Project: Aliens and Immigration Office – Soup Salad Pasta Pizza.
She drew on experiences, sentiments and everyday conditions of her surroundings in her research on migration. Early humans were nomads, traveling in search of food, shelter and safety. Today, people travel all over the world for a variety of reasons. As an artist LIU Yi likes to keep moving and experience the senses it triggers to have close observations of life.
The exhibition space in Salamiou brought in the blue sea and sky and was covered in straw, with a huge bale of hay in the center of the exhibition and hundreds of black-and-white butterfly frames all around it. A tiny screen in the corner near the door showed a frame-by-frame animation of a dog, far away. For the opening of the exhibition she invited a young donkey to eat the hay.
International Museum Day
State Gallery of Contemporary Art (SPEL) in Nicosia
On the cutting edge of fine art and film, some remarkable animation installations have been created over the years. These innovative applications of animation include new narrative techniques and ways of using the moving image.
The international exhibition at the State Gallery of Contemporary Art (SPEL) in Nicosia featured work by five artists: Pierre Hébert (Canada), LIU Yi (China), Stuart Pound (UK), Georges Schwizgebel (Switzerland) and SUN Xun (China). It took place from 18-31 May 2019. The selection focused on accessibility of animation as an interdisciplinary artform. The exhibition offered a playful as well as profound frame of reference for audiences and professionals alike, meanwhile also drawing attention to the historic heritage of the animation film.
In line with the exhibition, film programs were presented, showing a wide range of narrative and non-narrative animation films, from artistic entertainment to autonomous art of the international vanguard and quality animation for the whole family.