New York City is a place of constant change, invention and chaos. Avoid Eye Contact sums up these urban qualities in animated terms. Avoid Eye Contact Volume 2 continues to explore the thriving contemporary independent scene going on in New York City.
Starting in the 1960s, a close-knit community has formed, fueled by small screenings, studio visits,
local festivals, social events, and monthly events presented by Asifa-East; an intimate exchange of ideas, techniques and stories has developed.
These artists don't seem to follow any trends and, although savvy, are not beholden to any technology. They live hand-to-mouth in one of the most expensive cities in the world, finding ways to produce their films within
those restrictions. Tthat fact underlies every New York film you see. The New York independent
animators, as represented on Avoid Eye Contact, are far from outsider artists. They balance time to
work on commercial jobs with the time needed to complete their independent endeavors. It is often the
case that the two feed each other, supplying a testing ground for techniques, styles, and
storytelling devices. Funds gathered from paying jobs are poured into personal projects.
In New York, the commercial and the independent converge in a way rarely seen elsewhere in the world.
All of the artists collected on the two volumes of Avoid Eye Contact have commercial pedigrees to
rival any of the accolades received from their independent work. The commercial success only makes
the luster of these independent films grow brighter.
The self-distributed DVD Avoid Eye Contact Volume 1 has sold an impressive 2000 copies worldwide. Avoid Eye Contact Volume 2 continues the tradition, offering a new program of films and animators spanning the last five years. Young
animators join seasoned masters in a show that is surely to become another important part of the
animation enthusiast's library.
All films are international award-winners, each with a distinct look, united only by genre and the gritty soul of New York City.
Thursday, September 22, 11:00 pm (Arts Court - Club SAW)
Friday, September 23, 11:00 pm (Arts Court - Club SAW)
The Mousachist  John Dilworth
Coffee  Rohitash Rao
Handshake  Patrick Smith
Fetch  Nina Paley
Moonraker  Fran Krause
The Man Who Yelled  Mo Willems
Dentist  Signe Baumane
Pee-Nut  PES
Space War  Christy Karacas
The Stork  Nina Paley
CNN vs. MTV [ ] Rohitash Rao
Push Comes to Shove  Bill Plympton
Frog  Chris Conforti
Atlas Gets a Drink  Michael Overbeck
Life  Mo Willems
Eat  Bill Plympton
Bar Fight  Christy Karacas