FNE at Animateka 2021: Impossible Figures and Other Stories Wins Grand Prix

    Audience award winner Granny’s Sexual Life - Director Urška Djukić and producer Boštjan Virc Audience award winner Granny’s Sexual Life - Director Urška Djukić and producer Boštjan Virc copyright: Katja Goljat

    LJUBLJANA: Marta Pajek's short animated film Impossible Figures and Other Stories won the Grand Prix of the 18th edition of Slovenia’s festival of animated films Animateka, which was held in Ljubljana from 29 November till 5 December 2021. The Polish/Canadian coproduction also received a cash prize of 1,000 EUR.

    The jury said it unanimously loved the film, which beautifully and powerfully visualises a past era full of hope, trust and belief in a bright future with a life for anyone.

    "I have been following Marta Pajek since her first student films. With the completion of the trilogy Impossible Figures and Other Stories, the author proved that she belongs to the very top of world authorial animation," the festival director of Animateka Igor Prassel told FNE, adding that his personal favourite of the feature films, screened at this year's Animateka, was The Crossing / La Traversée, the film by the French grandmaster of glass painting Florence Miailhe, who in her feature debut The Crossing focuses on the topic of migration of minors.

    The members of this year's international jury were Dutch curator of animation and contemporary art Gerben Schermer, Swiss animation filmmaker and teacher Maja Gehrig, Croatian illustration and comic artist Igor Hoftbauer, Slovenian producer Viva Videnović, and Belgian independent filmmaker and animator Soetkin Verstegen.

    Saša Bach, the festival producer, pointed out that this year's AnimatekaPRO once again brought a diverse range of content. "We listened to the authors of the competition programmes, who revealed the tricks and techniques of animation, and the members of the jury Maja Gehrig and Soetkin Verstegen presented us with more details on how their creative process takes place," Bach told FNE, adding that in cooperation with the City of Women, Animateka also prepared a round table on gender equality in production, education and distribution of animated films, and conducted the fifth edition of the development projects competition in the former Yugoslavia. She and her team were especially pleased that the first prize of the Animateka PRO Pitch jury went to the Slovenian project Nobody Has Ever Watched Elephants as You Do directed by the promising young filmmaker Sandra Jovanovska and produced by Miha Černec (Staragara). "It is a personal and intimate project that explores the impressions and feelings of the author during her first pregnancy through the medium of animated film".

    The festival presented 344 short films and seven animated feature films.

    The complete list of winners:

    Grand Prix Award:
    Impossible Figures and Other Stories (Poland, Canada, 2021)
    Impossible Figures and Other Stories by Marta PajekDirected by Marta Pajek
    Produced by Animoon, National Film Board of Canada

    The Children Jury Elephant Award:
    The Invention Of Less / Izumiti manj (Switzerland, 2021)
    Directed by Noah Erni
    Produced by Studio uuuh!

    Young Talent Award (by School of Arts at University of Nova Gorica and Academy of Fine Arts and Design of University of Ljubljana):
    Night of the Living Dread / Noč žive groze (UK, 2021)
    Directed by: Ida Melum
    Produced by National Film & Television School

    Special mention:
    Kurent (Slovenia, 2021)
    Directed by Miha Reja
    Produced by Schol of Arts (University of Nova Gorica)
    Coproduced by Zvokarna

    DSAF Audience Award (by Slovene Animated Film Association):
    Granny’s Sexual Life / Babičino seksualno življenje (Slovenia, France, 2021)
    Directed by Urška Djukić, Émilie Pigeard
    Produced by Studio Virc, Ikki Films

    International Jury Special Mentions:

    Soetkin Verstegen:
    Bagatelle (Hungary, 2021)
    Directed by László Csáki
    Produced by Umbrella

    Maja Gehrig:
    Epidemia (Estonia, 2021)
    Directed by Kristjan Holm
    Produced by Karabana

    Igor Hofbauer:
    Skrivalnica / Caché / Búvóhely / Hide (France, Hungary, Canada, 2020)
    Directed by Daniel Benjamin Gray
    Produced by La Cellule Productions, CUB Animation, The National Film Board of Canada

    Gerben Schermer:
    Steakhouse (Slovenia, Germany, France, 2021)
    Directed by Špela Čadež
    Produced by Finta, Fabian&Fred, RTV Slovenija, Miyu Productions

    Viva Videnović:
    Doma: luna / W domu: Księżyc / At Home: The Moon (Poland, 2020)
    Directed by Tomasz Popakul
    Produced by HBO Europe

    Animateka PRO Pitch prize:
    No One Ever Looked at Elephants as You Do (Slovenia)
    Directed by Sandra Jovanovska
    Produced by Staragara (Slovenia)