Spheres *

Spheres *
Norman McLaren
7'00'' drawing colour
1969 | Canada
Punto y Raya Festival 2011


This animated short film is a play on motion set against a background of multi-hued sky. Spheres of translucent pearl float weightlessly in the unlimited panorama of the sky, grouping, regrouping or colliding like the stylized burst of some atomic chain reaction.

The dance is set to the musical cadences of Bach, played by pianist Glenn Gould.

Norman McLaren
Norman McLaren

1914 | Stirling, UK  / +1987 Canada

After finishing his art studies at Glasgow University in 1932, McLaren joined the Glasgow Film Society, where he discovered cinema through the works of Eisenstein, Pudovkin and Fischinger.
He started quickly to innovate the medium through his direct·on·film animations, painting or scratching the cellulloid. In 1936 he worked as a cameraman during the Spanish civil war, a terrible experience for him. II World War being imminent, he decided to emigrate to Canada, where in 1941 he joined the National Film Board.
McLaren never ceased exploring new techniques to experiment with space and time, sound and image, light and colour. And he demonstrated that absolutely anything is susceptible of animation, including chairs or wooden fences.
Music always played an important roll in his work and in fact, he created many of his own soundtracks by scratching or painting on optic·sound film.
Next to Grant Munro he produced a series of five films called Animated Motion, which constitutes a true lecture on animation due to its deep analysis of Space and Time in film. In 1952 he was awarded the Oscar for Neighbours and Blinkity Blank was awarded the Palme d'Or at Cannes in 1955.
He died in 1987 in Montreal·Canada.