Saturday, 4 April 2009

Ivan Maximov "The Additional Capabilities Of The Snout"

I note that Ivan Maximov has his The Additional Capabilities Of The Snout listed in the official selection for Annecy this year. It is described as concerning Pyatachok, a small pig with a big nose. Well it is although, as with all this remarkable animator's work, Ivan creates a complicated world of casual incident, much of it bizzare if somehow suited to the reality he creates. To a rhythmic and percussive soundtrack by Nick Phelps whale-like birds make their way through a windy sky past trailing carrots on strings. If these are traps they pay not the slightest notice. The fish burst into giggles at the sight of the fishing lines and the rabbits chomp away happily at their string but miss the orange carrots set as bait. Our little pig places a balloon on his nose and sneezes, a character passes by with a branch on his head on which are placed carrots the rabbits fail to catch and our piglet friend gets an insect stuck on his snout. Thus in series of visual non sequiturs loosely linked to the proboscis we are immersed in an alternate, joyous world of fancy. Whilst Roman Efremov worked on the animation, background and layout by Svetlana Zueva, with Andrey Korinsky contributing incidental sound and sneezes, the world is indisputably Ivan's. He has told me he prefers to work in black and white, a little hard on the blue tinged, rather wintry colour mix used here to atmospheric effect. To progress: little pig drops the blue balloon from his nose over a bridge, disturbing a rabbit that is floating beneath on a raft thereby loosening its grip on a carrot; the fish meanwhile are wrapped up warmly in their beds though the fishing never stops.

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