FRAME X FRAME. Animated Film at the NFB. A lively and captivating foray into a world of creativity

Tuesday Jun 3 2014

Creativity has always been the heart and soul of the animated film work that Canada's National Film Board has produced since 1939.

Creativity has always been the heart and soul of the animated film work that Canada's National Film Board has produced since 1939. Frame X Frame: Animated Film at the NFB presented at Québec City's Musée de la civilisation from June 4, 2014, to August 23, 2015, pays tribute to this pioneering institution, which celebrates its 75th anniversary this year. The exhibition was designed and produced by Musée de la civilisation with the cooperation of the NFB.

A unique hotbed of creativity, the NFB has propelled filmmakers to worldwide acclaim and attracted note for the originality and remarkable technical quality of its productions. This exhibition turns the spotlight on this creativity and the captivating world it reveals. In all, over 250 films and film excerpts are featured, contextualized with some 150 artifacts carefully selected from the NFB collections, as well as Cinémathèque québécoise, Musées de la civilisation, CBC, and a small number of private collections.

A tribute to creativity
"Musée de la civilisation showcases all forms of creation and expression," said executive director Michel Côté, "and film has always been a natural part of its cultural mediation practices. Frame X Frame reflects the Museum's commitment to the cinematic arts in this salute to an organization that for 75 years has been making creativity and new ideas its stock in trade. Over the years Musée de la civilisation has spotlighted the work of such Québec creative luminaries as Robert Lepage, Michel Tremblay, Michel Dallaire, Pierre Gauvreau, and Michel Marc Bouchard. Now, Frame X Frame brings us the boundless imagination of animation directors past and present, including pioneer Norman McLaren."
"Through this exceptional exhibit, the Musée de la civilisation is placing the dazzling creativity of the NFB's animation filmmakers in the spotlight. The public is invited to step into the epicentre of a unique artistic world and actively participate in the creative process, inspired by the presence of the artists working on-site. There could be no better way to mark the NFB's 75th anniversary," said Claude Joli-Cœur, Acting Government Film Commissioner and Chairperson of the NFB.

Five worlds to explore as you wish
After a brief introduction presenting the beginnings of animated film – including luminaries of the day (Cohl, Reynaud, Chomón, McCay, Disney, and others), the NFB's filmmakers (from founder Grierson to Norman McLaren), and the creation of the first animation studio – visitors are free to follow their inspiration as they explore five creative worlds of animated cinema: social history, comedy, musicals, fantasy, and experimental work.

"Social history" reminds us all of the importance of telling our stories; the "musical" world highlights the crucial role of sound and music; original creations, animation techniques, and visual approaches are explored in the section dedicated to "experimental" work"; "comedy" is a happy-go-lucky world of fun and laughs for young and old alike; and "fantasy" reveals the unbridled imagination that some filmmakers bring to their other-worldly creations.

At visit's end, a projection room features the NFB's most celebrated animated films.

An animation lab to make your own short films
Included in the exhibition is an animation lab where visitors can try out their own creative talents using various techniques to make their own short films. Films that other visitors have made will also be available for viewing. The lab will also be used for other educational and cultural activities during the exhibition.

Carefully selected objects
Objects such as models, figurines, sketches, drawings, technical material, and even an Oscar will help bring each exhibition area to life, illustrating the talent of the filmmakers, their attention to detail, and the complexity of their work. Among them will be the chair from A Chairy Tale by Norman McLaren and Claude Jutra (1957), the Felix the Cat figurine (1920), a cylindrical zoetrope (1867), a drawing board of Norman McLaren's, a background drawing from Bob's Birthday (1993), Norman McLaren's Oscar for Neighbours (1952), a model from the film Sand Castle (1977), the TV from The Bronswick Affair (1978), and drawings and puppets from If I Was a God (in production).

"Living" artifacts
In the middle of the room is a big glass cage – a studio – where filmmakers-in-residence will work live during the exhibition. It's a unique opportunity to watch and even interact with professionals at work. The first filmmaker on hand will be Francis Desharnais (late July 2014). He will be followed by Janet Pearlman (late August 2014), Théodore Ushev (late November 2014), Sylvie Trouvé and Dale Hayward (early March 2015), Claude Cloutier (late June 2015), Patrick Bouchard (end of exhibition, August 2015).

View your short film

Personalized iPod tours
A downloadable iPod and iPhone app (iPods are available at the entrance) provides a personalized tour of the exhibition. Visitors can vote for the animated films they want to see in the projection area, or "like" them to watch them later at home. Exhibition areas where visitors can interact with the films being shown are identified with an icon.
Availble on the App Store

Frame X Frame: Animated Film at the NFB, a lively and captivating foray into the world of creativity! At Québec City's Musée de la civilisation, June 3, 2014, to August 23, 2015. An exhibition designed and produced by Musée de la civilisation with the cooperation of the NFB and the support of Fairmont Le Château Frontenac as official hotel and Le Soleil.

To know more :
Carefully selected objects

Media relations:
Québec City - Serge Poulin: 418-528-2073,
Montréal – Rosemonde Gingras: 514-458-8355,

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