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Ottawa Unveils 2018 Poster by Bruce Bickford

Famous art-film animator pays tribute to Disney’s 1953 classic ‘Peter Pan’ in the banner for this year’s festival.

Bruce Bickford’s poster for the 2018 Ottawa International Animation Festival.

The Ottawa International Animation Festival has released the poster for its 2018 edition, illustrated by legendary animator Bruce Bickford.

Bickford describes the work: "In regards to the poster, it's an homage to the 1953 Disney animated classic Peter Pan. You can see the clouds there crossing the moon which resembles the pirate ship sailing through the sky beneath the moon. Below there you see the family with the girl sleeping on the banister of the balcony, she's dreaming of Neverland. Over to the left, you see a frustrated Venice beach blues guitarist. Down across the frame, a figure that you see on a little flying carpet with flaming hair. His name is Matchstick Man and he lives in the uplands. The uplands is a place like Neverland except that the uplands is a real place."

From his home workshop and film studio in SeaTac, famously reclusive and idiosyncratic Pacific Northwest animation artist has for three decades produced visionary art films. Although self-taught, Bickford has earned a worldwide following of animation aficionados enthralled by his disturbing, lysergic, phantasmagorical, often violent, eye-popping and mind-bogglingly unique work.

Acquiring a film camera as a teenager, Bickford began experimenting with modeling clay and a primitive stop-motion animation technique (what is called "clay animation") -- a labor-intensive process that Bickford is rightly considered both a pioneer and master of. He gained his initial cult-status fame by animating various 1970s Frank Zappa films (for which Bickford is considered a father of the subsequent music-video revolution), but his most highly regarded piece is the masterful and award-winning 1988 feature Prometheus' Garden. Bickford's work has also been highlighted in Zappa's 1990 The Amazing Mr. Bickford film; exhibited at the Seattle Art Museum; and featured in the 1994 history book Clay Animation: American Highlights 1908 to the Present, the 1995 film The Clay Spirit, and two bio-documentary films, 2004's award-winning Monster Road and 2008's Luck of a Foghorn.

The Ottawa International Animation Festival is set for Sept. 26-30.

Source: Ottawa International Animation Festival

Thomas J. McLean's picture

Tom McLean has been writing for years about animation from a secret base in Los Angeles.