Nick Fox-Gieg

NICK FOX-GIEG

Animator, short film-maker, projectionist, teacher – is there anything Nick Fox-Gieg can’t do? Considering his films have won awards from the likes of SXSW and his work has screened at TIFF, Rotterdam and Ottawa film festivals as well as CBC Television and the Centre Pompidou in Paris, there is a lot for this young talent to be happy about.

nick_headshotDividing his time between two bustling and energetic centres, Toronto and New York, Nick Fox-Gieg has been making major waves in the animation and video art circuit since finishing with a BFA in Art at Carnegie Mellon University in 1999 followed by an MFA in Animation at the California Institute of the Arts in 2004.

A small glimpse into his bio shows just how gifted this artist is – he has won an Eyebeam Fellowship in 2012, a Fulbright Fellowship to the Netherlands in 2006, and has received media arts grants from Bravo! FACT, the Canada Council for the Arts, and the arts councils of Ontario, Pennsylvania, Toronto, and West Virginia. His shorts are quirky and often personify inanimate objects in whimsy funny animations. People obviously love his stuff and so do we. Read on to find out more about Nick’s inspirations and what his thoughts are on the whole art + brew movement.

Your short films are quite charming, winning numerous awards including Best Animated Short at SXSW 2010 for ‘The Orange.’ Where/how do you gather inspiration for these films? 

I enjoy collaborating with writers and performers – often something I happen to hear or read will suggest strong images to me, and I’ll try to reach out and and get in touch. In the case of ‘The Orange, I read Benjamin Rosenbaum’s one-page short story aloud at an open-mic night back in 2005, and it got such an enthusiastic response that I realized I had stumbled across something special!

A citrus fruit being granted ultimate power over the universe is pretty hilarious. You also do projections. Tell us more about how those come about.

I actually did theatrical projections with live-action video for years before I got further into animation production. Early on, they would just be a series of pre-rendered cues burned to a DVD. Now I perform realtime animation live on a laptop; I work with a library of videos I’ve built up over the years, including a lot of microscopic footage, and create custom software to work with different controllers that track my hand and body movements.

What made you want to submit your work as part of our inaugural Label Series One?

I’m really interested in the potential of augmented-reality stuff—video labels that you can play on a phone seems like an intriguing concept. I also find even non-augmented beer intriguing.

What’s in store for you next?

I’m developing some new animation software and working on a short film from a monologue by spoken-word performer Jem Rolls. It’s about how birds are bitter because they secretly wish they were still dinosaurs…

Haha, love the sound of it already! To find out more about Nick and his projects/exhibitions, visit his site, www.fox-gieg.com.

 

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