Monday, 29 March 2010

Abstract Cinema 4: Oskar Fishinger

Above: Abstractions 1946-57.

Oskar Fishinger is often seen as the pioneer of abstract animation. Jerry Beck suggests that “Fishinger had always had a dream of blending classical music with the kind of conceptual designs that might be formulated in one’s mind when listening to a symphony. This mixture he termed as ‘visual music’” (Beck, 2004, p.22).

Fishinger’s ability in blending music with animation inspired the animators on Walt Disney’s Fantasia (1941). He did work on the “Toccata and Fugue” (Bach) section, but “because his original designs were dismissed as too abstract and modified against his wishes, Fishinger acquired a deserved reputation as an animator with more integrity than Disney” (Kostelanetz, 2001 p.213). Fantasia can be seen as “Disney’s attempt to legitimise the animated film by working in a more abstract, highly aesthetic supposedly ‘cultured’ way" (Wells, 1998 p. 29)

Further reading:

Beck, J., (2004) Animation Art: From Pencil to Pixel, The History of Cartoon, Anime and CGI London: Flame Tree Publishing.
Kostelanetz, R., (2001) Dictionary of Avant-gardes 2nd Edition, New York and London: Routledge.
Leslie, E., (2002) Hollywood Flatlands: Animation, Critical Theory and the Avant-garde, London and New York: Verso.
Russett, R.and Starr, C. (1976) Experimental Animation: An Illustrated Anthology, New York: Van Nostrand.
Wells, P., (1998) Understanding Animation London and New York: Routledge

No comments:

Post a Comment