The Quay Brothers’ Universum

Suzanne Buchan, Jaap Guldemond, Marente Bloemheuvel


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  • naioio
  • 2013
  • ISBN 9789462081277
  • 144 pages
  • Paperback, with dust jacket
  • 22.9 × 17 × 1.3 cm

Published in conjunction with an extensive solo exhibition of the work of the Quay Brothers at the EYE Film Institute in Amsterdam, this book presents the experimental and extraordinary oeuvre of these film-makers, arranged as an inventory of their various references and sources of inspiration. Special focus is given to their short films, especially imagery derived from 19th and early 20th-century Central Europe, when art and science flourished in a new society and wherein private obsessions, melancholia and enigmatic collections are unravelled and revealed. With numerous illustrations, an introduction by curator Jaap Guldemond and a detailed essay by Suzanne Buchan.

Identical twins Stephen and Timothy Quay, better known as the Quay Brothers, are influential stop-motion animators. The Quay Brothers are internationally known for their incredibly inventive, other-worldly films that blend objects, puppets and people from real life with gloomy fantasies and haunted visions. This book presents their intriguing works as well as their sources of inspiration and fascinations.
Over their careers, they developed an unmistakable aesthetic that somehow manages to inspire, confound, and often disturb their viewers. The Eye Filmmuseum is presenting a large exhibition of their work, including their animation films, set designs (which they call Dormitoriums) and works on paper, but also works from other animation filmmakers, Wunderkammer artefacts, anatomical models, Eastern European posters, drawings from the Prinzhorn Collection, scores by Karlheinz Stockhausen and other sources of their inspiration.
Including excerpts of texts by Bruno Schulz, Franz Kafka and Robert Walser, clearly elucidated by Suzanne Buchan, Professor of Animation Aesthetics at Middlesex University, London.

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