Anibar Animation Festival 2021: Winners

Anibar Animation Festival 2021: Winners

A varied range of winners crowned the 12th edition of Anibar Animation Festival (Peja, Kosovo). Anibar three juries selected winners for six competitions: the International Competition, Student Competition, Balkan Competition, Animated Music Video Competition, Feature Film Competition, and the Human Rights Competition.

The festival competitions were judged by three different juries.

  • The Grand Jury (Fabian Driehorst, Joni Männistö, Lori Malépart-Traversy, Mauro Carraro, Yvonne van Ulden) decided the winners of the International Competition and the  Feature Film Competition.
  • Student Jury (Blend Leci, Lisjan Bajri, Lorna Çekixhi, Nora Jusufi, Driton Goleshi, with the help of tutor Sarah Lugthart) judged the Student Competition and the Balkan Competition.
  • Animated Music Video Competition and the Human Rights Competition were judged by Alban Nimani, Ana Nedeljkovic and Paola Orlic

International Competition

“Souvenir Souvenir” by Bastien Dubois from France is the winnerThis is a movie about the author’s grandfather Algerian war souvenirs.

Jury Statement:  The movie has the whole package. It is cleverly told with meta-layers that genuinely contribute to the message of the story. It has a strong dramaturgical structure, good pacing, is well animated and the chosen styles enhance the impact. It deals with the tough topic of colonialism from the perpetrating side in a nuanced, compassionate and sincere way that doesn’t close the door but opens it for discussion. It transcends this singular French history and is recognizable and relevant for many people in Western European countries.

Special Mention goes to “My Galactic Twin Galaction”, directed by Sasha Svirsky and produced by Alexander Gerasimov. A film from the Russian Federation about good and evil, utopia, dystopia, where narrative and post narrative collide in a mortal battle.

Jury Statement: A movie that is fantastic in its form and genuinely hilarious. Experimental animation doesn't come any funnier than this.

Student Competition

The winner of the Student Competition is “Butterfly Jam”, a movie from France, directed by Shih-Yen Huang. This movie is about a young woman, who describes her father and his relationship with his many pets, that he never managed to take care of.

Jury Statement: A beautiful and unusual story told in a beautiful and unusual way. Visualizing pain is often a difficult thing to do but to do it without the use of characters is even more impressive. This film conveys feelings of apathy and neglect in such a fluid and hypnotic way that it leaves you with a profound sense of sadness that lingers with you long after the film, and that's why the winner is butterfly Jam by Shih-Yen Huang

Special Mention goes to “Coffin” by Yuanqing Cai, Nathan Crabot, Houzhi Huang, Mikolaj Janiw, Mandimby Lebon, Théo Tran Ngoc.

Jury Statement: For a stunning depiction of the feeling of discomfort in a heavily populated city with a visual approach that's impossible to not empathize with.

Balkan Competition

“Those who drown cling to foam” is the winner of the Balkan Competition. A Kosovar movie hows a woman’s daily battles for food and survival during the war. The movie is directed by Urtina Hoxha, who is also the writer along with Eremirë Krasniqi, while it was produced by CHWB Kosovo.

Jury Statement: This film captures the feeling of fear that so many people went through so convincingly with minimal means. The simplicity of the art style really puts focus on the story and enlarges the emotional impact. To tell this story through the eyes of a mother, with a strong survival instinct, makes you relate to the stressful situation people were in. 

A special mention goes to “Elusiveness”, a Serbian movie directed by Marija Vulic, written by Isidora Vulic, and produced by JaFilm Jagodina. “Elusiveness” is based on a Serbian folk tale, and it tells the story of a girl of peculiar origin and beauty.

Jury Statement: In appreciation of the beautiful design, animation and craftsmanship put into this film.

Animated Music Video Competition

The winner of the Animated Music Video Competition is “A little too much” by Martina Scarpelli, an American music video that shows a woman who lets go of herself and goes into an imaginary space where she overcomes the fear of her own greatness. 

Jury Statement: Beautifully executed black and white 2D animation that gives us an inspiring journey into the inner world of a woman. Being one, means living in a constant rollercoaster of all kinds of emotions from being bold, brave and beautiful all the way down to being fragile, insecure, miserable and full of fears. But, the main message delivered is more than clear: gentle acceptance of all of those emotions especially related to insecurities regarding the objectification of her body as an essential right to be and to feel free as a woman.

Special Mention goes to “Kona” by Shpat Morina.

Jury Statement: Kona is a conceptual animation with a strong illustration of the hard traditional Albanian customs that treat women very harshly and which sadly are still applied not only in various regions of Kosovo but also as all around the world. It deserves the Special Mention prize and we completely join the alarm call for every young girl and woman to stand up against mistreatment.

Feature Film Competition

“Kill it and leave this town” is the winner of the Feature Film Competition. It is a Polish film, directed by Mariusz Wilczynsk and produced by Bombonierka. The film is about someone who hides in a safe land of memories, where time stands still and all those dear to him are alive.

 Jury Statement: A roughly styled gem that caught the jury unawares and touched them at an emotional level. This movie is brutally honest and pure. Not held back by shame, it deals with human relationships at so many levels. A movie with beautiful music, well written dialogues and subtle humour.

Human Rights Competition

The winner of this category is a Spanish movie called “Where were you?”. It was directed by María Trénor CoIomer, written by Maria Trénor Colomer, and produced by Francesc Garcia Donet and Francesc Picó. The theme of the movie is violence against women, and it tells experiences from different countries in different languages.

Jury Statement: The film shows the strong potential of animation to discuss important social and political issues. It discusses the topic that is of crucial importance nowadays and it helps brave female voices to be heard telling us their real stories about violence.

Special Mention goes to “We have one Heart” by Katarzyna Warzecha. A Polish film that talks about a guy who finds out about his father who he never knew, through some letters his parents exchanged years ago.

Jury Statement: A successful combination of animation and documentary approaches, based on real events, a film that is at the same time personal and political, tells us an important story about love and the ways to cross the borders.

The 12th edition of Anibar Animation Festival took place 23-30 July 2021. The festival was concluded with the Closing Ceremony at Lake Cinema, in the presence of Kosovar prime minister Albin Kurti.

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