Animate Objects

This entry is based on an animated piece done by Canadian artist Jamie Q from 2003[1].  After my first watch-through, I thought that this video was aesthetically pleasing, but a bit lacklustre and dry; I could not find much to it. For my interpretation I have divided the film into three parts.

The first twenty seconds (Part 1) shows time-lapse photographs of shadows on nondescript high-rise buildings.  This makes me think of the rhythm of the days and nights, and being a witness to time going by.

Part 2 features stop-motion photography of various metal objects moving around the screen, with different pieces being painted from frame to frame, as the objects move and interact.  As she applies the colours to the metal pieces there seems to be a similar rhythm, and some similar shapes to what she showed in Part 1, reminding me of the silhouettes on the buildings and again the passing of time.

When the video changes again to the blue wooden painted pieces (Part 3), they move toward a certain order and have a similar rhythm to their movements as parts 1 & 2, however, this could just be the frame rate.  The colour palette that she chose also feels like water or waves.  Just as the pieces assemble into an identifiable pattern, a large metal object appears and casts the “water” into chaos once again.

I believe in these three parts the artist may be representing humans intervention in the natural environment, creating chaos (Part 3), the intervention of humans on the built environment (Part 2), and the environment’s influence on the built/human in Part 1.

While I don’t know if there was meaning at all behind the work, after several views and considering what it was she intended, I certainly no longer feel that the piece was neither dry nor unexciting.

[1] Vimeo, “Animate Objects (silent)”, accessed November 07, 2014,

BONUS; LondonFuse interviews Jamie Q!


One thought on “Animate Objects

  1. After watching this film, I also had a hard time deciphering any sort of meaning. If anything, the film seemed to communicate the passing of time. For instance, the time-lapse buildings and the emphasis on the aesthetic of the tree rings in the wood seem to embody the passage of time. However, other than this, I struggled to come up with any clear narrative. Though, the film might not be attempting to communicate anything concrete. Rather, it may simply be about creating an aesthetic experience. We also have to take into consideration the venue it would have originally been viewed in. Perhaps this film had a much stronger impact when viewed on a larger screen – as opposed to our computers.


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