Studio Proof: "DAIM Recall" highlights animation through memory

Staff Writer
Columbus Alive

Hopkins Hall Gallery on Ohio State’s campus (located on the north end of the Oval) is a small gallery that often houses big ideas. The current exhibition, “DAIM Recall,” is a prime example; the inspiration of memory brought to life through animation.

The exhibit presents work by the Advanced Computing Center for the Arts and Design (ACCAD) Digital Animation and Interactive Media (DAIM) graduate students from 2008 to 2014, and represents how technology can be used to create some masterful works of visual art.

Entering the “DAIM Recall” exhibit, visitors are immediately greeted by three interactive animation pieces where video game controllers, computer mice and other manipulative objects allow the viewer to take an active role in the art. All three are interesting approaches to the theme, but the highlight is the collection of animated shorts.

A makeshift black box theatre houses 16 shorts running on a continuous loop that are projected on a massive screen. The large screen will immediately suck in the viewer with the vibrant colors and spectacle of the animations. After that initial reaction, one will realize how each artist’s creation of memory through his or her short is pervasive, despite the often personal nature of each.

These shorts convey happy memories involving childhood wonder (“The Games I Made Up” by Mary Twohig), fantastic urban exploration and triumph in “Wonder” by Nikki Lemon (pictured) and even complex, melancholy reminiscences (“Wade” by Jeremy Baker).

Some contain a narrative structure — “Wade” is like a documentary retelling one young man’s realization that after a recently rediscovered best friend is troubled by harrowing addiction issues — while others are more abstract ruminations and contain only a score and no dialog, as in “Wonder” or “Limitless” by Karen Ross.

Watching all the shorts takes just under an hour, and it’s well worth your time. Not only does this aspect of “DIAM Recall” represent the best to come out of Ohio State’s program the last handful of years, but it’s also an interesting theme (memory) executed in a stimulating manner.

photo courtesy of Nikki Lemon