BFI London Film Festival: Frankenweenie The Art of Exhibition

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I could tell you a long story involving temporary employment and some subsequent troubles but who wants to hear that? On the other hand you can look at some pictures of a small exhibition I went to for the art of ‘Frankenweenie’.

Tim Burton’s most recent endeavour had its UK premiere as part of the British Film Institutes’ London Film Festival and the BFI were so good as to host an exhibition dedicated to the art of the film. Tim Burton has had exhibitions of his work in general before but unfortunately not this side of the pond so I was more than glad for the opportunity to see some of his work in person. I believe the festival itself is underway for a little longer but this particular exhibition is running only from October 17th through to the 21st. It’s free to go to but you need to pick up tickets from the ticket office at the BFI on the London Southbank. The staff are very nice, especially if you become very lost.

I have to preface this the same way I do every time Tim Burton comes into the conversation – I am a Tim Burton apologist. Before I knew who he was (or what a director was) his films kept popping up in my life until one day I joined the dots and realised there was one man who kept making things I liked.

His last few years of work have been a little flawed, even for me, so I have yet to see the new ‘Frankenweenie’ but having the opportunity to see all these wonderful models and sets in the flesh did soften me towards it a lot. Whatever else you might say about someone remaking their own film from 1984 there has been some serious craft put in to making this film happen.

For the exhibition itself I would have personally liked a little more to look at, everything they had on display was wonderful but it felt limited when you think of a project of that scope. On the other hand I appreciated the inclusion of some storyboards decorating a few of the displays, though unfortunately there was very little written information included about anything on display and nothing to discuss the process involved in the set-making or concept stages. They did have a couple of short films running on a loop that talked about the creation of the models and their armatures, however they were very brief and unfortunately placed in the room close to a loud loop of the 3D film trailer so it was sometimes a little difficult to hear what was being said.

I will admit that it is possible that my desire to see more comes from my familiarity with the process of animation, a lot of work goes into creating the smallest of animated films and having studied it I may have wanted to see more from the exhibition than they had arranged for the general public, but I in no way mean to disparage against what they had. The quality of the drawings, the sculptures and the sets on display was excellent and it’s well worth a look if you can get there.

Below I have included a gallery of some photos I took there – you should be able to click them for more detail than the slideshow can give. I apologise for the varying quality, the storage cases made photographs difficult in some instances.

Helen xxx


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