- Animatsaya in English is a site I visit frequently even though it doesn’t change that frequently. It’s a site that gives a good insiders view of Russian animation. Currently, I think they’re doing some of the best animation worldwide. Not too long ago, Niffiwan, the site’s host, offered a translation of a Russian article about the effect of the financial crisis on Russian animation. Naturally, the results were devastatingly bad.
However, toward the end of the piece, several prominent animators were asked their opinion, and I thought that Yurij Norstein offered some valuable words. Hence, I repost them here:
- It has always been difficult for an artist, but today is doubly difficult. Always difficult, because the artist, in general, is a person who finds it difficult to live with himself. Today is doubly hard, because the lack of money and the constant attention to the question of “how to get money” kills art by half.
But it is also obvious that it is very difficult without a community. If we lose each other, then we will all be worth one kopek, and it is unlikely that we are individually worth something and can do something. I, of course, am talking about my own experiences at “Soyuzmultfilm”. And although we did not have ideal relations, though we argued with each other, we were still a community, and our only desire, emotional and mental, was to make a film be as good as possible.
The last thing we thought about was the market, what would sell … If you remember, say, the Renaissance, an artist back then sought primarily to make something. This is why the artist must be at the head of everything.
I suggest you visit the site and read the entire article. Things in your community may not be as bleak as you thought.
- Jeff Scher has one of his lively animation pieces in the NYTimes, in case you haven’t seen it recently. This is an ode to Spring. “Welcome Back.” It’s another excellent spot by Jeff, and I urge you to view it. We have to support the animation on newspaper sites. It’s the way of the future, and the newspapers should know it. The only way that can happen is for the pieces to get hits. Go there.