Simone Massi, 44 years old, author of the opening sequence of the Venice Film Festival, can be considered one of the masters of independent contemporary animation. He won 227 awards in 60 countries around the world. In twenty years of work he created 1 hour and 20 minutes of cinema as the realization of his short animations involves the drawing of every single frame by hand, often employing a technique close to etching in a process of continuous subtraction, looking for an intimate and poetic synthesis of reality.
He is trying -in a clean way- to make his passion for drawing becomes a job.
The symbol of the festival lasts for thirty seconds, a result of 300 handmade designs including the citing of Fellini, Angelopoulos, Wenders, Olmi, Tarkovsky, Dovzhenko, Truffaut. The computer is not even minimally part of the creative process of Simone. In this as in all of his works, his instruments are pure and rough, as the thicker paper that absorb sundulating waves of ink, caressed by traits of pencils, crayons, and pastels, and that comes to life with the graphite. The technique of "scratching" adopted in the latest works of Simone Massi - which allows him to completesix designs at the most in a day, working non-stop from morning to night – ensures that for an eight minutes film are requested two and a half years of work .
“The world of animation, just like many others, is both corrupt and hypocritical. It is a world filled with people that have nothing to do with animation, they simply oil the wheels and determine the success or failure of filmmakers. There are authors who will do anything to become famous and, in the end, they succeed in their intent. I’m not willing to do anything, but I’m a fighter. I don’t belong to any movement; I have neither leaders nor godfathers and don’t take orders from anyone. I’m alone by necessity and because I can’t do otherwise. I sniff the air and my nerves are on the alert. I await a signal, and perhaps a step forward. In the meantime I don’t budge an inch. This is where I am and I’ll keep my position… I’m aware that my animations are not simple, but the truth is I’m not interested in simple things. I’m an explorer. Each of my films is a lonely, exhausting journey, which makes sense only if hasn’t been done before. I climb hills with the hope of seeing what lies below and then being able to describe it. The art that is in my mind can either lose a person or raise him from the ground.
Poetry succeeds sometimes, but if a film doesn’t achieve its objective it could be the fault of the speaker or of those who are not capable o flistening”. [Taken from http://www.simonemassi.it/ ]
Cinema Contributor Clara Gipponi
Content Editor Annie Markitanis