ANIMATION DOES TO HISTORY WHAT IT DOES TO NATURE. ANIMATION EVOKES HISTORY, PLAYS WITH IT, UNDERMINES IT, SUBVERTS IT, BUT IT DOES NOT HAVE IT, JUST AS IT DOES NOT HAVE NATURE. IT HAS SECOND NATURE. OR DIFFERENT NATURE. IT HAS DIFFERENT HISTORY. IT MODELS THE POSSIBILITY OF POSSIBILITY. 
-ESTHER LESLIE FROM “ANIMATING HISTORY”

Gestures for a Plague Season or Goodbye Earth(works) (2020-ongoing)

Premiered at The Clock Tells the Hour via Maine Writers & Publisher’s Alliance

100 Partially Obscured Views/100 Vistas Parcialmente Oscurecidas  (2018-2022)

Soft premiere Central School Project, Bisbee, AZ (2022)

Screening at Cornell Cinema (X)trACTION Program (2022)

Screening at Arsenal Berlin (X)trACTION Program (2022) *For this Berlin edition, (X)-trACTION wrote a manifesto as part of the collaboration between the Harun Farocki Institut and the Berliner Gazette’s project After Extractivism which is available here on their media partner’s website NON.

The City I love is Destroying Itself (2017 for Longreads)

Animated Interview with El Paso historian David Dorado Romo

Line Becomes…(2020)

Public Domain Interventions (2018-2021)

Public Domain Review Interventions 2018-2020

I grew up hearing stories about my great-grandfather, a Jewish immigrant and tailor, who worked in various high-end department stores in Manhattan. He would save the discarded scraps from the apparel he was working on and seamlessly piece together shirts and dresses for everyone in the family. I think I’ve always been drawn to textiles and their patterns for this reason. In 2018 I discovered a Book of French Textile Samples (1863) at the Public Domain Review.

The rough square samples were composed in unpredictable ways on each page. I was curious about how the patterns could create a kind of narrative through movement. From there I began ‘weaving’ short animations into the bookplates. Later I moved onto other Public Domain Review featured books that intersected with my other interests in alchemy, biology, geometry, pattern poetry, atmospheric phenomenon, sound visualizations, water and wave formations and others. I try to create one animation a day and post to Instagram. This is meant both as a way to continue experimenting in animation, but also as a way to learn more about these fascinating text. I’ve amassed so many at this point, I now create small reels organized by text to screen in micro-film programs. I will premiered the full reel of PDR animations at North Rock Center for Sculptural Arts Summer Invitational 2020.

“Studies on Twilight Phenomena, after Krakatoa” (1888) Chromolithographs from watercolour images by Eduard Pechuël-Loesche via The Public Domain Review. I added some charcoal from this year’s fires (2020)

Attributions by bookplate: https://www.instagram.com/nicoleantebi

Full reel: https://vimeo.com/436861361

2018-2019 Reel

Selections from my professional and creative test work spanning 2018-2019. Animated Essays, 2D Character Concept Animation, Clay Animation, Puppet Animation, Public Domain Review Interventions, Web Series, Educational Videos, and Book Trailer.

Industrial Light and Magic

Mary Hallock Greenewalt received 11 patents for her “color organ,” an early form of synthesizer. She would spend the rest of her life defending them. Words and animation at https://www.topic.com/industrial-light-and-magic

Patent No. 1,357,773: “Rheostat” (1920)
The rheostat was an essential mechanism of the Sarabet. It was an electrical device that varied the resistance of the electrical current so that Greenewalt could produce smooth fade-ups and fade-outs of light as she played. In this patent application, she describes the rheostat as “compact and substantial of a commercially practicable design; relatively simple as regards the aggregate number and arrangement of its parts, and at the same time includes a series of contact blocks and moveable contact member adapted for operation by human, mechanical or automatic power.”
The rheostat would become a standard tool for electronic instruments, and when General Electric infringed on Greenewalt’s patent in 1932, she sued. At first, a judge denied hearing the case, determining that the rheostat was too complex to have been invented by a woman. This decision was overturned on appeal by Judge Hugh Morris, who described Greenewalt as “a true artist” in his decision, and she eventually won the case.

Patent No. 1,385,944: “Notation for Indicating Light Effects” (1921)
“The object of my present invention is to provide a score comprising names, numerals, marks, symbols, hieroglyphs, or the like, constituting a chart or record sheet for denoting or interpreting a lighting sequence or succession to accompany music,” wrote Greenewalt in this patent. It involved Greenewalt’s translation of Beethoven’s 1801 “Moonlight” Sonata into a notation readable by a Sarabet player. Full video available here with interpreted tonalities by Melissa Grey https://www.topic.com/industrial-light-and-magic

100 Partially Obscured Views/100 Vistas Parcialmente Oscurecidas

is a partially animated topographical film essay about El Paso/Juárez told through a series of postcards of the region from the late 19th century through the early 1970s. Many of the later postales were made by Roberto López Díaz, a prominent postcard maker in Juárez, Chihuahua, and Mexico who thoroughly documented a moment that is difficult to access now. 

Sound designer, Jonathan Rodriguez, stitches together sonic traces of people and place, highlighting animated points of transition between views, ranging from public monuments proposals, the injustices of Mexican American labor, resource extraction, the impact of current policies on people and land, and other interrogations of a border landscape that I’ve witnessed transform into a highly militarized zone.

El Paso and Juárez share history, share people, share each other’s gaze, their differences are constructed by imperialist treaties and policies, and obstructions that insist on their difference.  

Premiered at the Feminist Border Arts Film Festival at NMSU in 2019 and screened at Judson Memorial Church on May 8th part of StoryLab’s “Borderlands–Visual Art from the Resistance!”

I Offer You with French Textile Samples (1863)

In 2017 I began integrating a beautiful collection of French Textile Samples (1863) found over at The Public Domain Review into my animations.

The looped animations were then absorbed into a oulipian collaboration with l’Ao for a Multilingual Poetry Reading curated by Tansy Xiao. The project premiered at the Brooklyn Art Library 28 Frost St Brooklyn, New York on June 29th, 2018. Documentation of the event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=d-JMeKEcrog&t=29s

“The language with which I make my poems has nothing to do with one spoken here, or anywhere.” — Paul Celan

Multilingual Poetry Reading is a series of poetry reading and performance events that encourage varying interpretations of the same poems in different languages and disciplines. Special thanks to our host Brooklyn Art Library, a crowd-sourced library that features 40,609 artists’ books contributed by creative people from 135+ countries. Event Organizer: Raincoat Society, a non-profit organization dedicated to presenting artists with fluid identities and multiple cultural backgrounds. Poems include Jorge Luis Borges, Marina Tsvetaeva, Paul Celan, Vasko Popa, Charles Pierre Baudelaire.

Fred’s Rainbow Bar and Other Stages On the International Border

Thrilled to announce selections from ‘Fred’s Rainbow Bar and Other Stages on the International Border’ ( @fredsrainbow ) debuted at the Feminist Border Arts Film Festival at New Mexico State University on April 16.

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Fred’s Rainbow Bar and Other Stages on the International Border (working title) is an in-progress topographical film essay and archive using a variety of animation styles along with live-action and archival imagery to interrogate histories, memories, and imaginings of the border landscapes of El Paso, Texas and Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua, Mexico, the region where I grew up. The film is mostly set in the early 9o’s or the era before NAFTA and before the erection of the Border Security Fence with flashbacks to the Battle of Juárez and flashes forwards to contemporary events, like the razing of the ASARCO smelter. The International Border (or the river with two names) remains the main-frame through which events unfold. More information about the project and clips coming soon. For specific questions contact me here: nicole.antebi(at)gmail.com Visual Notes

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This film was made possible in part from a generous grant from the Jerome Foundation.

Just Browsing//Web Series

I’ve been working with writer, Joanne McNeil on a series of five video essays that talk about internet culture.

Just Browsing is a five part series investigating what it means to be an internet user. Each episode, presented by writer Joanne McNeil, begins with a topic of inquiry and leads the audience through the narrator’s own investigation of overlapping subjects using books and a web browser. The episodes toggle between new and old forms of media along with animation and live action sequences filmed at New York’s long-standing speakeasy bookstore, Brazenhead Books.

The full series is now streaming at Labocine for a limited time.

The series premiered October 19th, 2017 at Fridman Gallery, NY, thanks to EYEBEAM Brooklyn https://thomafoundation.org/2015-arts-writing-award-grantee-joanne-mcneil-debuts-just-browsing/

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A Retelling of the Cowherder and the Weaver in the Age of Migration

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Sneak peek of a new film collaboration with the brilliant sound artist, S Xiren Wang and commissioned by the videoartphile Leo Kuelbs Collection for a forthcoming Digital Fairytales Program curated by Leo Kuelbs and Wing Lu with Able Sun. The film is based on the ancient Chinese folktale, Cowherder and Weaver Girl. Here, I reinterpret the tale as a contemporary allegory told in the age of migration. The two star-crossed bodies, with the help of a flock of magpies, work to deconstruct the wall between land and sky and build a bridge to unite their worlds.

World Premiere March 1, 2018 at Made in NY Media Center by IFP