My Soviet Education: An example of Ülo Pikkov’s politically-focused work.


Animation has a rich tradition of debating, commenting and reflecting on the political and socio-cultural situation of society. Since animated film is also a vehicle for cultural memory, collective consciousness and identity, Eastern European animations provide unique insights into a totalitarian society and its modes of behaviour.

The Soviet domination of Eastern Europe after World War II had mixed effects. On the one hand, the state-supported industry was able to produce high-level artistic animations without the pressing need to focus on their commercial success. On the other, the state also controlled and censored almost every step of filmmaking, severely curtailing the creative freedom of the animation artists.

This intriguing and thought-provoking programme, introduced by Ülo Pikkov, the eminent award-winning Estonian animator, and followed by a Q & A, explores how potent political protest can be created in the most subtle and allusive of ways.

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    Jen Lenica/Poland 1965
    108 minutes

    Dušan Vukotić/Yugoslavia 1961
    10 minutes

    Avo Paistik/Estonia 1978
    10 minutes

    Jirí Trnka/Czechoslovakia 1965
    18 minutes

    Arnolds Burovs/Latvia 1967
    10 minutes