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The Japan Media Arts Festival is a comprehensive festival of Medi a Arts (Japanese: Media Geijutsu) that honors outstanding works from a diver se range of media - from animation and comics to media art and games. The festival gives awards in each of its four divisions: Art, Entertai nment, Animation, and Manga. It also provides a platform for apprecia tion of the Award-winning and other notable works.

Participation in overseas media arts festival The Agency for Cultural Affairs organizes participation in var ious overseas media arts festivals etc. through projects planned and manage d by NHK international, Inc. The aim is to introduce outstanding works in su ch fields as media art, video, the websites, videogames, animations and comics.

Award-winning program.

This program comprises 8 highly distinctive works from award-winn ing works of the Animation, Entertainment, and Art Division from the Japan Media Arts Festival 2015.

©Sacrebleu Productions


Artist: Boris Labbé


Animation. Grand Prize

Animated short film

This animated short film is remarkably elaborate and radically composed. Its world, endlessly generated from the smallest possible units, is the universe itself, where every element continues to transform, correlate, and influence each other. The title Rhizome is a reference to a concept elaborately elucidated in A Thousand Plateaus (1980) by French philosopher Gilles DELEUZE and psychotherapist Pierre-Félix GUATTARI. The animated film encompasses all the principles of rhizome while also examining its biological meaning and a philosophical discussion. The artist says he wanted to create something out of the various elements of Steve REICH's concepts of music, the mathematical artworks of ESCHER, the paintings of BOSCH and BRUEGEL, scientific theories about evolution such as genetics, and the relationship between micro and macro. Within this, DELEUZE and GUATTARI's concept came into this head and became part of the work. The unique film embodies the interests and appetite of a young artist.

©2015 OÜ Nukufilm


ISAND [The Master]

Artist: Riho Unt


Animation. Excellence Award

Animated short film

In this animated short film, a dog, Popi, and a monkey, Huhuu, wait for their master to come home, after he never came back one day. Although Huhuu is in a cage at first, he manages to escape from it and the two animals begin their lives together. Popi is smarter and stronger than the monkey, but being also obedient and subservient, he always surrenders to Huhuu's whims. On the other hand, Huhuu is licentious and foolish, and treats the home however he wants. Based on the short story Popi and Huhuu (1914) by the Estonian writer Friedebert TUGLAS, this stop-frame animation is made using real puppets in an attempt by the artist to inquire into the nature of fear and folly of authority, and what is authority. Who is our master? What would happen, if the character and actions of our master were like Huhuu's? The film not only deftly expresses animal-like movements but also portrays a strong concept.

©Papy3D Productions

Artist: Nguyen Phuong Mai


Animation. Excellence Award

Animated short film

The story begins with the appearance of a mysterious man with the head of a bird, who comes to live with Hugo, a seven-year-old boy, and his mother in their house in the country. Hugo feels puzzlement at the unfamiliar behavior and habits of this birdman who suddenly encroaches on a world shared only by him and his mother, his anxiety and resentment growing at his mother's indifference. Driven by an inquisitive nature to learn more about this birdman, Hugo comes to witness the gap between realism and dream, human and animal nature, leading him to take a step from childhood to the world of adults. The film is based on Hugo's unique point of view, we see things through his eyes. We identify with him and follow him through this sudden upheaval. Taking a unique viewpoint between sourness and poetry, and making use of familiar images and feelings, the film portrays the restructuring of a family. In addition, the story is told in silence, without use of any dialog.

©2015 Kazak Productions


Artist: Gabriel Harel


Excellence Award

A coming-of-age story conceived from the creator's own childhood experiences of living in the south of France. 13-year-old boy Yùl accompanies his brother Dino as he goes to strike a deal with Mike, a local thug who brings along a large guard dog, only to be confronted with violence and humiliation. But when Yùl is cornered, a mysterious snake appears. . . This is the first animated work the creator has directed, shot first as a live-action film with real actors, and then rendered as a 2D computer animation. Through this process, the work successfully creates a sense of reality in the composition and the interactions between the characters. As the monochromatic images move back and forth between realism and fantasy, the core of the story drawn in color accentuates this balance, and while only a short film, its distinctive style gives the work great expressive scope.

© 2015 Ikki Films

Artists: Agnès Patron / Cerise Lopez


Animation. New Face Award

Chulyen is a creature that is half human, half crow and whose merciless eyes reveal an arrogant character. The story is set in northern lands with forests and lakes, where the Aurora spreads across the night sky. When Chulyen sets its eyes on a kayak ridden by a giant, it follows the dictates of its interest and steals the boat, but soon the spirits are in pursuit... Chulyen is a fictional creature that appears in the traditions of Northern Native America, and this work was produced according to the original story. A dark intense world is generated through a monotone depiction mixing simple yet occasionally violent drawing and live action, combined with distinctive audio effects.

©La poudriere


DEUX AMIS (Two Friends)

Artist: Natalia Chernysheva


Animation. New Face Award

Big misunderstandings can occur between inhabitants of different worlds, even when they are close friends. In this work, a caterpillar has a narrow escape when it is rescued by a tadpole after falling into a pond. Following this sudden encounter the two creatures become friends, but the tadpole transforms into a frog, and the caterpillar into a butterfly. . . An ending neither had anticipated was awaiting them. The method of drawing a concise story without dialogue and only a minimum of color is something CHERNYSHEVA's previous works also share, but in this her third animated short film she has attempted clearer and more simplified drawings. Combining simple points and lines with backgrounds that resemble handwriting, her expressive style was inspired by works of Japanese artists KATSUSHIKA Hokusai and UTAGAWA Hiroshige.

©2015 GAL

Artists: Hashimoto Baku / Nogami Katsuki


Entertainment. New Face Award

"In this music video, the two members of groupinou travel over a maze of connected streets captured by Google Street ViewTM. It is made of impersonal images recorded by various people and businesses around the globe, and follows groupinou through a world that infinitely expands over longitude, latitude, and temporal axis. This work pertains to groupinou's album MAP, which contains the track used in this music video. It was created by combining a rigorous optimization process that utilizes various digital tools with a process that involves meticulous frame-by-frame creation. Furthermore, the project's production tools and methods were released to the public as open-source material. Although based on a simple idea, the resulting video is a manifestation of the artists' enthusiasm, imbued with qualities that defy time and technological trends."

©2015 Louis-Jack Horton-Stephens

Artists: Louis-Jack Horton-Stephens


Art. New Face Award

Gill & Gill is both a visual essay and a visceral poem; a celebration and an exploration of humanity's relationship with stone. It compares two masters of the material: one of rock climbing, the other of letter carving. Eric GILL and John GILL were the respective fathers of modern letter carving and bouldering. One shaped, the other scaled, but why did stone speak to them? To answer, this film follows their 21st century successors: Richard KINDERSLEY (world-renowned letter carver) and Lucy CREAMER (Britain's greatest female climber). Outside, CREAMER boulders – a lone figure battling brutal landscapes. Inside, KINDERSLEY carves – shaping and re-shaping in the hushed intensity of his studio. Yet these contrasting crafts yield surprisingly similar skills. As chisels cut stone, and hands clasp crags, both carver and climber shape, question and solve.

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