BUFF’s Big Animation Boxes

This year the BUFF Festival in Malmö held a series of workshops with the biggest animation box you have ever seen.

Everybody recognises the concept of the animation box, a tool created by Swedish animator Erling Ericsson, allowing children to instantly shape animated stories with cut-out figures. This year BUFF had a special reason to come forward with an oversized version of the animation device. It’s Erling Ericsson who can tell all about it:

2018 marked the 100th anniversary of Ingmar Bergman’s birth. Even as a child Bergman was fascinated by moving images. “The first film I owned was 3 metres long and of brown colour” – a film strip, oftentimes cut from a cinematic movie, and available for purchase. When the film strip was wound through the cinematograph it would bring to life moving images, projected on the wall. “The small, wobbly cinematograph became my magical box,” Bergman said. He was 10 years old when he discovered his passion. Today, 90 years later, a child puts a tablet on top of an animation box and creates moving images – the experience is still the same.

We’d like to offer children the possibility to explore the language of film with Ingmar Bergman as their tutor. A new animation box, the Bergman’s Kinomatograf was designed and presented at BUFF 2018. 150 boxes have been travelling the land throughout the year to wherever you could find children with a special interest in filmmaking.

The project was celebrated at BUFF 2019 with a gigantic version of the animation box, in which children could animate themselves through giant cut-outs. It would be a pleasure to present this Big Size Bergman Kinomatograf at any event dedicated to film and to children’s filmmaking.

Animator and TV producer Erling Ericsson worked for UR (Swedish Educational Broadcasting Company) for many years disseminating knowledge about animation. He has taught children around the world how to animate through his book “Animate It!”.

Project info & contact: Erling Ericsson, johnerling.e@gmail.com.