Iga Puchalska is a Polish born artist who concentrates on traditional hand-drawn and experimental animation. Her work involves intimate investigations of social politics and the human experience that is mediated through interviews. That’s How it is is an animation based on an interview with Puchalska’s parents discussing the family’s immigration from Poland. In the animation, Puchalska not only translates her parents’ answers, but more importantly translates their gestures through drawing. In That‘s How it is Puchalska acts as the mediator between her parents’ experience and the viewer.

Underbreath is a live-performance-based animation created to an instrumental composition of Mia Gormandy that in a narrative manner explores issues of human nature; ongoing battles of lost hope and loneliness.


Oasis consists of four animated segments driven by a narrative of a multimedia interpretative dance production created by Nejla Yatkin, Oasis-Everything you Ever Wanted to Know About the Middle East, but Were Afraid to Dance. Animation, inspired by Persian shadow theater tradition and the works by Lotte Reiniger, in a juxtaposition with the reality of the choreography explores questions of identity, veiling, torture and spirituality. Included are three out of four segments.

Concept: Nejla Yatkin, Iga Puchalska, Julien Christopher Smasal

Animation, Editing: Iga Puchalska, Julien Christopher Smasal


"...fantastic animation by Iga Puchalska and Julien Smasal telling the story of a young girl asking her father all about life and the nature of human beings. It’s beautiful and quite original." -The ArtsWire

"...a lovely shadow puppetry animation by Iga Puchalska and Julien Smasal projected onto three staggered sheets. These amazing puppets are far more detailed than the bunnies created with your fingers and a flashlight against the bedroom wall..." -NYtheater.com

"...animated silhouettes of a young girl conversing with her wise grandfather introduce the element of innocent curiosity." - InfiniteBody

"...charming animation by Iga Puchalska and Julien Smasal, the work offers a variety of message-laden episodes..." -backstage.com

Shoes is an excerpt from an animated short The Troubles. It represents responses to the collaborative research effort involving Relatives for Justice, prof. Christian Davenport, and filmmakers Brian Ashby and Ben Kolak. The interviewees were asked about their life before, during, and after the Northern Ireland conflict, the Troubles. 

"Most Meaningful" is a short documentary animation based on answers to a question: "What is the most important ’I love you’, you have ever said or heard from someone?” I interviewed a group of people from varied backgrounds and was able to explore their differences based on their responses. I found it extremely fascinating, how such a simple question can trigger very complex and emotional reactions.
"Organicism" is a metaphorical depiction of the circle of life. By using narrative symbolism and visual allegories, I tried to represent my understanding of the human experience, as an individual, as well as a part of society. I figuratively compare the social order to an organism, whose functionality is dependent on a chain of actions and reactions. I used an imaginary environment with all of its mundane activities and some extreme occurrences, to emblematically construct a small scale replica of our lives.