My day trips out: Barbican, Watch Me Move


Hey all, I have been meaning to blog about this show  I went to the other week. But been so busy recently executing a few images and getting lost around the place so it has taken some time I apologize. Blogging in the early hours of the day is the only time i can find to be on my own and be at one with my thought.  So it was a really wet and horrible day where the clouds were having a complete wobbly and were not stopping any time soon.  I made forth with a big brolly that would maintain and battle against this chaotic weather that stood between me and visiting this show on my day off.

Surprisingly I have never been to the Barbican before, so it was a 1st for me and was really excited to witness its great scale inside. Also I never hearing of a bad show the Barbican have ever put on. After entering the building and being directed to the 3rd floor to the entrance to 'Watch Me Move' I was confused and questioned , how big is this place and will my wee self ever get out? or was it a small show?

But yes when I arrived, it was a grand entrance as if the bottom 3 levels below me never existed.

The first room was big and in pitch black which were sectioned off  with wee curtains to give that cinema feel, even if one had to stand to view all the various black and white footage they had accumulated. Short films dating from the 1890's Lumiere Bothers (Le Sequette)  which were of skeletons dancing which i thought were brilliant to the 1930's Fleisher Brothers, most known for Koko the clown leading to (Betty Boo- Snow White).  For those who haven't seen it before. here it is. 


I remember watching this for the 1st time at university. I was in my 1st year and as per usual fell asleep throughout the lecture but my mate woke me up for this animation, since he knew I wouldnt want to miss this even, if i did enjoy a good snooze in lectures. Looking back i wished i stayed away and might have learnt more on the art history side of things. Rather than now learning all about it properly. 

There are so many epic elements in this animation by the Fleisher Brothers, I love!.
Throughout the entire short film, it just flows so naturally visually wise, having a great relationship with the words and music taken into account. Putting these elements together, they still managing to push so much life into the characters and emotion. Betty Boo established for her flirtiness, big eye lashes can be seen at 2 mins 26. Where she sings while crying (crocodile tear's) to the two guards who are ment to execute her. But are left crying from her sweet words destroying there tools. 

When Koko the clown starts to sing some blue's at 4 mins 30 changing into significant elements one after a another, It truly amazes me every time!! No matter now many times i watch it. It has that unique flare that todays cartoons just miss out on. Ending with the classic cartoon case, its where alot of cartoons are inspired today, such as Tom and Jerry.

Not knowing, I wasn't allowed to take photo's, getting out my camera and being obvious as possibly can be taking photo's.  Naturally i got caught and told, one wasn't allowed so that explains for the lack of photos or odd angled ones since I had to do it more sneakier than the raccoons do when stealing Halah meat burgers from KFC. So I apologize now for the lack of them.

I entered this massive room that had two mammoth like screens on either end screening different things. One screen that followed the title 'super human power', rotating 10 min clips from 10 different films where animation have played a major roll in. For example Akira, Ghost in a shell, Sailor Moon and man more.  As for the other screen,  it had more playful animations such as the Simpsons, Pop Eye, The Flintstones, Who Framed Roger Rabbit and many more alike. I sat there for quite a while on the soft chairs and headphones provided. 



After reading posters and watching various video's about the lifeline of animation so far, it was a fascinating read and made some notes about this in m journal.  I than ended up in a room where it was full of award winning short film animations, along with other ground breaking ones that the Barbican selected. I have jotted some of the ones i thought were brilliant in my journal. Don't know how well you can see the names in the photo, but its there either way if you want to know the names i thought worth noting to myself. 




By the end, I spent 5 hours watching crazy amount of animations. at 1 point my stomach was rumbling and even had a cheeky wee nap in one of the many booths allocated per screen.  After watching a crazy amount of foreign short films on the 2nd level for nearly 2 hours.  I wouldn't even know where to start telling you about them. Took a photo of one, where it was a chinese series about a big and his friend the monkey, getting up to mischief and supposedly saving china from demons. 



I could write more about this but I still need to reply to a few emails before I get ready for bed. Another long day tomorrow. Will be at the Brick Lane Gallery open night as always doing my thing than onto life drawing in a wee cafe for a cheeky wee 30 minute's session, literally 30 seconds walk from the gallery. 

In conclusion to this show, it was worth the £12 entrance fee and going hungry for a few hours so i could stay there longer to enjoy the endless amount of short films brought together by the Barbican.  

Im still yet to post up some new material too on here but will by the end of this week. 

Speak to you all soon 
Robert.