Saturday, June 16, 2007

Telling stories. Andy Huang times two

There are two Andy Hunag's living in the US and making great animation.

1. Andy Huang, a student of arts and animation at the University of Southern California, brings us Doll Face, a fairy-tale about... to be honest, I was so pleased with the visual aspect of the video, at first I completely missed the story. Let me give you this opportunity, too.

So, the story is, well, simple. But the doll is charming, the melancholy lightness of it, the delicate texture. Should we always ask for more?

2. Andy Huang, a graduate of communications design from Pratt University, introduces us to a world where design meets animation meets a baroque sense of humor. His is a polyphonic world, one that flies in all directions, cares not about narrative but about a certain shape, balance, impact.

Both Andys have some things in common. Their work is slick, clean, well-focused, it is not afraid of pop, of a certain type of flashiness.
On the other hand, they represent two different choices. One tends towards clean narrativity, a beginning a middle an end, (and in this order...), the other seems much closer to visual arts, chaos is welcome, Flash animation, clean powerpointy cuts, the new digital collage...
This is really a very serious issue: the consequences of each of these options are impressive. Of course, they can be combined, interpolated, tried out and thrown out at will... But there is such a thing as a body of work, career progress, or artistic development. And there is a need for storyline, for things happening that cause other things happening. Causality. And yet, from the perspective of contemporary art this seems so petty, so ridiculous, when you have all these broken, mashed up, re-redone languages... As if it weren't an issue. New playwriting? Experimental cinema? Installations? Maybe. And yet, while participating in all these experiments, while promoting them and enjoying them, I somehow still feel the deep thirst for story.