Masterclass with Scott Curtis
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Animation is filled with characters who cross borders. From Koko the Clown (Fleischer Brothers) and Alice in Cartoonland (Disney) in the 1920s to the cast of Who Framed Roger Rabbit (Robert Zemeckis, 1988) and Alice (Jan Švankmajer, 1988) and beyond, animated characters often act as avatars for our wish to cross between fantasy and reality, dream and waking life, past and present, or even life and death. Animation itself, as a genre or mode of production, often evokes and provokes these boundaries as well, in its constant development of technologies that merge and then erase live-action images, or in its themes that continue to explore our existence on these borders. In this masterclass, Scott Curtis, Associate Professor of Communication at Northwestern University in Qatar, will introduce the audience to animation history while leading us on a journey through animation’s borderlands. Curtis will also give brief introductions to all the films in the series.
Scott Curtis is Associate Professor of Radio/Television/Film at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois and Associate Professor in Residence in the Communication Program at Northwestern University in Qatar. He has taught courses on animation history since 1989, published several articles on animation, and has recently edited the anthology, Animation (2019)—part of the “Behind the Silver Screen” series at Rutgers University Press—which examines the history of American animation through its changing modes of production and technologies.