Interview: Ilaria Comisso about the relation with the marionette and the animation puppet

We met Ilarii Comiso at the November Doll Prague Exhibition. She presented her wooden marionettes and we were next to with Animuj stand. We just fell in the eye and all weekend we talked (not only) about animation and puppets. Ilaria is from Italy, but lives in Berlin. In addition to marionettes, she also produces animated puppets.

Can you tell us exactly what you’re doing?

I’m mainly a character designer and a puppet maker.

How did you get to puppet animation and what fascinates you most?

It was unavoidable, actually. I don’t remember when I started drawing people, sculpting them came naturally, and making them move was just the missing piece.

The thing that amazes me of this form of art, and I’m including puppetry in this too, is the extreme honesty that I see in it. There is a story being told. and like memory and imagination (and dreams), the pictures, the buildings, the faces, are ALMOST real. But it’s an artifact that is not trying to hide what it’s made of: the audience and the actors accept a sort of a deal. What’s gonna happen is not true. It’s not pretending to be real. This thing is two dimensional, or it’s made of plastic, wood etc… we all see this. So we all have to play along.

Making marionettes is your main profession, would you like to devote yourself to the production of animated puppets?

I don’t really see a problem in keeping both going. 🙂

Is the production of marionettes in something similar to the production of animated puppets?

It is! They both are non-sweating actors, indeed. I don’t see any big difference between theater or cinema in this sense. It’s all a matter of materials, in the end.

Back to animation. What do you lack in the animation industry?

Well, experience I would say. There’s never enough that one could learn

What are the educational opportunities in animation in Italy?

Ah ah ah…none.

Was there an Italian feature film animated recently which You like?

I love the work of the “Dadomani” studio, they have both originality and quality.

Have you ever thought about creating your own animated film?

I don’t exclude that, but the most interesting part of this kind of work is the team work behind it, and at the moment I simply don’t have met the right people to do something like that.

Do you know any of current artist in animation industry which is good to follow?

There are so many amazing artists around, I can just list some of them but surely I would forget others: aka studio, Aardman, Nina Paley, Toccafondo are just the first ones that I can think about

Thank you for your answers, Ilaria!

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