Friday, November 19, 2010

The Animation of Piotr Kamler

I love all kinds of animation. As a parent, I've probably watched more animated feature length films and shorts in the past two years than I care to admit. They've run the gamut from truly inspired and wonderful movies like Coraline and Despicable Me to dreadfully dull fare like The Tale of Despereaux.

I grew up with Bugs Bunny and Tom & Jerry-- which is weird come to think of it. Was there such a dearth of cartoons available in the 1970s that they had no choice but to show cartoons from the '40s and '50s? I haven't figured that out. But ever since I was in high school and could rent things like Wizards and Fantastic Planet, I've been enthralled by the potential of animation to take me places that regular films cannot. It allows for a total suspension of belief that even the best science fiction or fantasy films aim for, but for me at least, usually fall short of delivering.

My eyes were peeled wide open after I got out of high school and discovered Japanese animation (even though it was really there all along, what with Speed Racer and Star Blazers-- I just wasn't aware it was what would later become known as anime) and the experimental animation of Jan Svankmajer and the Brothers Quay. This was the stuff that truly resonated with me.

Over the summer, I was turned on to Polish animator Piotr Kamler. I found quite a few of his films on youtube and bookmarked them but most of them have now been deleted.

Anyway, some have reappeared so I'm going to post them before they're gone again. I love his stuff because it's like some of my favorite surrealist painters' work come to life and most feature soundtracks by prominent musique concrète composers. Jean-Pierre Jeunet claims Kamler's films inspired him to get into filmmaking. Enjoy while they last.

Coeur de Secours (Heart of Relief) features a score by Francois Bayle.

L'Araignéléphant (the Spider Elephant) features a score by Bernard Parmegiani and text in French.

His 1982 award-winning film, Chronopolis, featuring a score by Luc Ferrari, can be viewed in its entirety here.


  1. These are amazing, and I can't believe I've never heard of this person.? I hope you don't mind that I posted the SpiderElephant on Facebook. I know lots of artists whose current work is in some way indebted to this style of animation whether they know it or not.

  2. I think the whole idea here is to share the cool things we find, so I would never be dark that you post something on your mytwitterbook. I'm happy to actually turn you on to something you hadn't heard of.

  3. Have u already visited it?????