1909 | Budapest, Hungary. / +2003 · USA
Jules Engel is a pioneer in the field of animation as a visual art form. Born in Budapest in 1909, Engel grew up outside of Chicago and then moved to Los Angeles as a young man, where he successfully created dual careers as an abstract artist and experimental filmmaker. Engel's aesthetic is informed by the principle of abstraction, whether or not the work is representational, and regardless of purpose.
Engel's contribution to two Disney films in particular, "Fantasia" and "Bambi", contains a finely tuned visual aesthetic that Engel subsequently explored and developed into his work as a filmmaker and as an artist. Acknowledged as an early California Modernist, Engel's extensive art exhibition record has paralleled his completion of more than thirty independent experimental and animated films.
Engel has also been enormously influential as a teacher to international artists and filmmakers who have created a presence for their work from Harvard to Hollywood.
-- Janeann Dill [excerpt]