Toy Stories: Home Is Where We Start From

Maud: Kalulushi, Zambia

Julia: Tirana, Albania

Tangwizi: Keekorok, Kenya

Reanya: Sepang, Malaysia

Stella: Montecchio, Italy

Chiwa: Mchinji, Malawi

Toy Stories: Home Is Where We Start From

Photography by: Gabriele Galimbert

Toy Stories, by Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti, captures a number of young children’s lives through their prized toys, artfully arranged around them in the homes where they live. It’s an intimate and revealing look at the world’s diverse cultures as experienced by children.

Toy Stories is the kind of work that traverses many levels: it’s a study in photography, socio-economic situations, anthropology and finally, childhood. To the extent that a child’s toys are viewed in terms of a means of play, their use as transitional objects opens pathways to the capacity to be alone and distinctions between “me” and “not-me,” as well as the use of illusion, symbols and objects later in life.

Years later, they will walk out from home looking for the world. For many, an optimistic idealism will witness the real world’s cruelties and heartbreaks, and yet some will find much room for hope.

Toy Story 3: Trailer

Toy Story 3: Partysaurus Rex

Photo-Gallery: Toy Stories: Home Is Where We Start From

(Please Click Image to View Photo-Gallery)

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Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Horrific Bloody Mess!

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Horrific Bloody Mess!

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared is a finalist in The Wrap’s 2012 Short Films Festival, a new festival presenting 12 award winning short films selected from this year’s top international film festivals. Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared screened at the 2012 Sundance and 2012 Sundance London Film Festivals and the 2012 SXSW Film Festival, where it received the SXSW Midnight Jury Award.

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared is a wonderfully bizarre three-min. animated short film created by Becky Sloan and Joseph Pelling from the London-based This Is It Collective. The short begins innocently enough, with a small cast of sort-of identifiable characters sitting around a table and sing-talking about being “creative.” Then again, it looks like a rather lame children’s video, telling kids how to do what they do really naturally anyway, use their imaginations. But suddenly, it turns into a extremely disturbing free-association sequence, hinting at some very bleak psychological states, more like Black Swan than Sesame Street.

The filmmakers zero in on adult insecurities about self-expression, then delve into the perils of creativity. Such dangers quickly lead to terrifying glitter-covered animal organs (real, bloody ones, not made from the felt everything else in this video is made of), seizures and death. But just as quickly as the characters are served a gory meat cake, everything goes back to normal. And, just like any other children’s television show, the lesson learned is repeated at the end of the segment. And just what is that lesson? Never, never be creative. Unless you want to die.

Watch this video to the very end and you won’t regret it. Or will you?

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Horrific Bloody Mess!

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The 10th anniversary of 9/11: The StoryCorps 9/11 Series

The 10th anniversary of 9/11: The StoryCorps 9/11 Series

Public Television’s StoryCorps oral history project is premiering The StoryCorps 9/11 Series, three new animated films commemorating the 10th anniversary of the 9/11 attacks. The three-minute animated short films by the Rausch Brothers animators were created to preserve the memories of those who lost loved ones that tragic day. While the films are presented in a vintage cartoon-style, they carry deeply emotional heft due to the tragedy inherent in their stories. They are simple works, befitting the everyday lives that were nonetheless changed forever nearly 10 years ago. A major reason that 9/11 is such a tragedy is that it happened to people not unlike you or me, and these films do an amazing job of crystallizing that central truth.

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: John and Joe

John Vigiano Jr. was a firefighter and his brother Joe was a police detective. On September 11, 2001, both Vigiano brothers responded to the call from the World Trade Center, and both were killed while saving the lives of others.

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: John and Joe

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: Always a Family

On the morning of September 11th, Michael Trinidad called his ex-wife, Monique Ferrer, from the 103rd floor of the World Trade Center’s North Tower to say a final goodbye.

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: Always a Family

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: She Was the One

Richard Pecorella remembers the love of his life, Karen Juday, a secretary for Cantor Fitzgerald, who was killed in the World Trade Center attacks.

The StoryCorps 9/11 Series: She Was the One

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Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Terrifying Bloody Mess!

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Terrifying Bloody Mess!

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared is a wonderfully bizarre three-min. animated short film created by Becky Sloan and Joseph Pelling from the London-based This Is It Collective. The short begins innocently enough, with a small cast of sort-of identifiable characters sitting around a table and sing-talking about being “creative.” Then again, it looks like a rather lame children’s video, telling kids how to do what they do really naturally anyway, use their imaginations. But suddenly, it turns into a extremely disturbing free-association sequence, hinting at some very bleak psychological states, more like Black Swan than Sesame Street.

The filmmakers zero in on adult insecurities about self-expression, then delve into the perils of creativity. Such dangers quickly lead to terrifying glitter-covered animal organs (real, bloody ones, not made from the felt everything else in this video is made of), seizures and death. But just as quickly as the characters are served a gory meat cake, everything goes back to normal. And, just like any other children’s television show, the lesson learned is repeated at the end of the segment. And just what is that lesson? Never, never be creative. Unless you want to die.

Watch this video to the very end and you won’t regret it.  Or will you ?

Don’t Hug Me I’m Scared: A Terrifying Bloody Mess!

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The Town’s Been Invaded by Mystical, Imaginary Little Creatures!

The Town’s Been Invaded by Mystical, Imaginary Little Creatures!

Animals is a wickedly comical animated short film by Kristofer Ström, created for Minilogue’s music video, Animals.  Minilogue’s music is self-described as Swedish Post-House/Techno, leaving behind the boundaries of those genres, and actually all previous musical genres.  The magical little creature-animals serve as the musical front for the band, or rather as its visual front of imaginary, enchanting creatures.  And a very strange and goofy ensemble of cavorting little creatures they are!

Preparing  for the Performance: Unboxing the Animals

The Town’s Mystical, Imaginary Little Creatures

(Enjoy the Goofy Merrymaking in Full-Screen Mode)

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