TAIS Animation ABCs Studio Spotlight Microresidency, held February 14-20, 2016, asked four guest artists to consider how to animate their animating process.


 abcsStudio Spotlight


William Allinson, Gustavo Cerquera Benjumea, Laura Dobson, and Susan Wolf have each produced a short portrait of their creative experience in response to a challenge by TAIS to explore the process of independent animation art making. The resulting work suggest ways that technical and affective forms of creative engagement are intertwined.

Within a 1-2 minute long framework, the films present distinct perspectives. Produced using a different style of animation (stop-motion clay and cutouts, 2D and 3D digital), individually, the films portray implicit relationships between the individual artist and their animation style. Together they hint at a broader mystique embedded within the animator’s artistic encounter.

Though themes such as frustration, curiosity, meditation, distraction, and failure permeate, these four artists present us with portraits of creative struggle subverted by play, inspiration, and humour.

This exhibition is available as an online gallery for the remainder of 2016, and is also presented as a window-exhibition at TAIS Studios, located at 1411 Dufferin Street from March 15 – 25.

TAIS Animation ABCs: Studio Spotlight Residency

Featuring short films by

William Allinson
Gustavo Cerquera Benjumea
Laura Dobson
Susan Wolf

Electric Dream Chute by William Allinson, 2016

YouTube | Vimeo

William Allinson is an independent Stop-motion Animator/Filmmaker, living in Toronto. Originally from Kingston, Ontario, William relocated to attend Ryerson University’s ‘School of Image Arts’ where he received a BFA in Film Studies (2007). William has since gone on to create a series of award-winning experimental, narrative driven short films and music videos that have played at various film festivals around the world. William is currently experimenting with the creation and manipulation of larger-scale armatures/puppets and has his sights set on putting a feature film project together in the near future. Some of William’s past work can be found here, and here.

An interview with William Allinson about his work, by Alexandra Papouchina from the Canadian Animation Blog, is available here.

11:59 by Gustavo Cerquera Benjumea, 2016

YouTube | Vimeo

Gustavo Cerquera Benjumea is a Toronto-based artist, animator and teacher. He works in digital animation, installation, drawing, and sculpture. His work has been exhibited across Canada and internationally, with recent projects at the Niagara Artist Centre, Summerworks, Easter Edge Gallery, and Nuit Blanche Toronto. His animation work has been featured in short films, music videos, and in his directorial-debut – the music video for Lido Pimienta and Chancha Via Circuito’s song, “Jardines.” Gustavo currently teaches at OCAD and Brock University. For more on Gustavo’s practice, visit gustavocerquera.com and here.

An interview with Gustavo Cerquera Benjumea about his work, by Alexandra Papouchina from the Canadian Animation Blog, is available here.

DON’T GIVE UP by Laura Dobson, 2016

YouTube | Vimeo

Laura Dobson is a self-taught graphic artist whose work exists in the tensions swirling around and between mortality, vice, mental health, gender, youth, rebellion and class. She holds a Bachelor of Arts in Contemporary Issues from Ryerson University and is currently attending OCAD University, majoring in Integrated Media Studies. It is her desire to establish and encourage dialogue on the aforementioned issues via innovative technologies. More information on her work can be found on her website loraxxde.format.com.

An interview with Laura Dobson about her work, by Alexandra Papouchina from the Canadian Animation Blog, is available here.

Swimming in the Imaginary by Susan Wolf, 2016

YouTube | Vimeo

Susan Wolf is a multidisciplinary artist working through a broad range of media including animation, movement/performance, drawing, and sculpture. Her animation practice stems from a self-taught process that combines photo manipulation, paper cut-outs, drawing and stop motion. The animations are frequently narratives of resilience, vulnerability, struggle and adversity loosely drawn from real-life stories. Absurd, morbid and playful imagery feature prominently. Most recently, Susan has been exploring intersections of movement/performance, animation and sound through collaboration. Susan earned a BFA from NSCAD University in 2009 and a BA from McGill in 2002. Her work has been presented at screenings and in galleries in Canada and abroad. Examples of Susan’s previous work can be found at susanwolf.space, and also here and here.

An interview with Susan Wolf about her work, by Alexandra Papouchina from the Canadian Animation Blog, is available here.

TAIS project team is Jenn Snider, Managing Director, and Raphael Sanchez, TAIS Programming Intern.

This project is supported by the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts

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