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22 OCTOBER 2011

A mixtape of animation and musical styles

"To celebrate the Red Bull Academy World Tour, the Academy produced a music film that encompasses musical styles from around the world.

Berlin: The soundtrack for this clip is inspired by one of Hansa's iconic album's Iggy Pop's Lust for Life. Like the creation of the music in the studio, the cityscape is built from the many organic, analogue musical artifacts used in the recording studio. Tape creatures climb across the concrete city jungle towards the Berlin Wall–a nod to the studio's physical location.

Paris: The visual inspiration for the Parisian leg of the tour is an collision between the flesh and blood textures of the African soul and funk that comprised the concert, and the architectural backdrop of Paris–the home of the Afrobeat Picks event. Musically, the rhythm builds and the acoustics echo and bounce off the city walls as we travel across the avenues.

Detroit: Inspired by the Detroit automotive industry, from the start the viewer is immersed inside the iconic TR 909 drummachine–a nod to the intersection of man and machine central to the city's musical innovation. As we travel through a CG circuit board city, the cyclical nature of the assembly line process is increasingly apparent transitioning us from the hey days of Motown R&B to the minimal stylings of techno. The theme of repetition was also carried through to the construction of the musical score.

Toronto: The animation style here is directly referenced from the iconic soundclash album Scientists meets the Space Invaders. The four superhero characters battle it out across the streets of Toronto–each one representative of one of the four soundclash crews competing in this event, Afrika Bambaataa's Zulu Nation, Mad Decent, LuckyMe and Toronto All Star. The beginning of the battle is marked by the sound of the airhorn, a nod to the dancehall musical score underpinning this piece.

Melbourne: The bright, visually rich palette of this section is inspired by the coastal location of Melbourne city. Like the experimental nature of the event itself, the narrative of this film explores the relationship between sound and space. The audio of the Melbourne tram chimes set off a wave of fluid illustrated animations that bounce around the screen, visually inspired by traditional aboriginal paintings.

New York: When hip–hop first emerged in the 70s it was the ghetto blaster that amplified the sound of New York streets to the world. To pay hommage, the setting of this film was built from the original tape deck devices. We see a Hudson River constructed of unwound mixtapes. The trains all disappear to one of the five boroughs, a nod to the albums and boroughs celebrated in this event.

Rome: Italy and the Cinecitta studios are credited for producing some of the most influential cinematic masterpieces ever. To celebrate this we created a film that paid tribute to the different genres, from comedy to spaghetti western, 70s cop films & blood–filled horror flicks to psychedelic animations, in one narrative mash–up. A Spaghetti Western inspired track provides the aural backdrop as we pan across the scene culminating in a classic Sergio Leone shot. Along the way we reveal a chaotic assortment of villains, ghouls and policeman all participating in one comedic battle conducted to the tunes of a dead Mexican mariachi band.

London: Inspired by the event theme, Revolutions in Sound, we wanted to create a dominating creature that visually embodies the innovative qualities of the event itself. As the camera cuts around the robot's CG body we see it is inspired by components of modern London architecture. His head is a pulsating subwoofer, an iconic musical artifact central to London's influential bass music scenes and inside his chest we see the magnificent London Eye, the heart of the event itself."

(Red Bull)

Fig.1 'Red Bull Academy World Tour' (2011). Passion Pictures

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TAGS

20112D3D • airhorn • animation • animation style • architectural backdrop assembly line • automotive industry • BerlinBerlin WallCGcircuit boardcitycityscapecoast • concrete jungle • cut-up • dancehall • Detroitdrum machine • ghetto blaster • hip-hophommageIggy PopItalyLondon • London Eye • low-fiMelbournemixtapeMotownmusic videomusical scoremusical stylesNew YorkParisPassion Picturespsychedelic • Red Bull • Red Bull Academy World Tour • repetition • Revolutions in Sound • robotRome • Sammy Bananas • Sergio LeoneSpace Invadersspaghetti westernstop motionsuperherotape deck • techno • Toronto • TR 909 • tram

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
08 APRIL 2011

Atelier Carvalho Bernau: Bon anniversaire, Jean-Luc!

"Bon Anniversaire, Jean–Luc!

Our favourite director turns EIGHTY, and we want to celebrate (with) him, with everyone.

We were always in love with the title sequence lettering to Godard's movies Made in U.S.A. and 2 ou 3 choses que je sais d'elle. So as an hommage to Jean–Luc, to the Nouvelle Vague, to Seberg, Karina, Faithfull & Cie., we present you our Jean–Luc typeface, as a birthday gift for everyone. Voilà!

We didn't find out who originally made the lettering for these two movies. Some speculate it could have been Godard himself – Godard's interest in graphic design and typography is clear, with many of his other films employing such strong typography–only titles and intertitles. They are almost a self–sufficient entity, another character in the movie, another comment.

This style of lettering is so interesting to us because it is such a clear renunciation of the 'pretty', classical title screens that were common in that time's more conservative films. It has a more vernacular and brutishly low–brow character; this lettering comes from the street:

We can not prove this at all, but we think it may be derived from the stencil letters of the Plaque Découpée Universelle, a lettering device invented in the 1870s by a certain Joseph A. David, and first seen in France at the 1878 Exposition Universelle, where it found broad appeal and rapid adoption. We think this style of lettering was absorbed into the public domain vernacular of French lettering, and that the 2 ou 3 choses titles are derived from these quotidien lettering style, as it would seem to fit Godard's obsession with vernacular typography."

(Atelier Carvalho Bernau Design, 2010)

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TAGS

1878201080th birthdayAnna KarinaanniversaryAtelier Carvalho Bernaudesign formalism • Exposition Universelle • fontfree fontsgraphic designhommageJean SebergJean-Luc Godard • Jean-Luc typeface • Jean-Paul Belmondo • JLG • Joseph A. David • Kai Bernau • letterformletteringMade In U.S.A.NetherlandsNouvelle Vagueoctogenarian • Plaque Decoupee Universelle • Susana Carvalho • The HagueTwo Or Three Things I Know About Hertype foundrytypeface • typeface design • typography • vernacular typography • visual design

CONTRIBUTOR

Simon Perkins
21 FEBRUARY 2006

WarioWare: video game pastiche

"Wario Ware is a game about games. Some of its micro games are straight re–implementations of earlier Nintendo classics, but WarioWare also parodies older games such as Super Mario Bros[7]. and The Legend of Zelda[8]. WarioWare exhibits and distorts many game design conventions we take for granted.
...
WarioWare's most obvious departure from conventional game design is its discontinuities, which illustrate the effects of continuity on game experience. Wario Ware's ultra–compressed games contain only a minimum number of ingredients. These miniature games illustrate how complex games are generally built out of simpler ones. WarioWare?s nonsense and absurdities also explore the relationship between fiction and rules.

In a sense, WarioWare is an Understanding Comics[4] of video games: a text that uses the representational strategies of a medium to reflect upon that same medium. But where Understanding Comics is discourse on comics, written in the language of comics, Wario Ware is more like Chuck Jones's meta–cartoon Duck Amuck[2]. WarioWare and Duck Amuck violate convention, and in doing so draw attention to how cartoons and games are both constructed and interpreted."
(Chaim Gingold)

[2] Duck Amuck. Director: Chuck M. Jones. Warner Bros, 1953. 7 minutes.
[4] McCloud, Scott. Understanding Comics. New York: HarperPerennial, 1994.
[7] Nintendo, Super Mario Bros. Sept. 1985. NES game.
[8] Nintendo, The Legend Of Zelda. 1987. NES game.

[Gingold talks about the Nintendo (Gameboy Advance) game called WarioWare. He reveals it to be a pastiche of earlier video games, clustered together and played as a single master game.]

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TAGS

cartoonconstructionconventionDuck AmuckgameGameboygenre • Gingold • hommageNintendoparodypasticheself-referentialself-reflexivetributevideo gameWarioWare
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