Mentors

Catya Plate

Animator, Filmmaker

Catya Plate, born in Barcelona, Spain, and raised in Germany, is a Brooklyn-based Fulbright Alumna, multi-award winning filmmaker and artist working in stop-motion animation, sculpture, painting, drawing, artist’s books and installation. Her work explores in a serio-comic way how the creation of a new mythology may help address contemporary manifestations of anxiety and angst.

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    Film Still, "Hanging By A Thread", 2013.

    Film still from the animated stop-motion short film “Hanging By A Thread” (2013). This scene: vulkeet-bird characters Hitch and Alma hanging out on floating brains in a post-apocalyptic setting before they fly down to assist the “clothespin freaks” in reconstructing a new form of humanity.

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    "Hive Mind", 2010.

    Detail of “Hive Mind” (2010), a mixed media sculpture from the “Clothespin Freaks Sculpture” series that comments on congenital anomalies as well as reproduction and genetic manipulation, particularly human cloning.

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    "Foot Licker", 2008.

    “Foot Licker” belongs to the “Clothespin Freaks Portrait Gallery” series. This series consists of oval-shape embroidered portraits on fabric, depicting god-like characters that can be seen as protectors of body parts and organs such as windpipe, foot, kidney, etc. In an ironic way, these so-called freaks, having a sacred quality to them, similar to patron saints, are actually more of a memorial or tribute, like a headstone. For example: “16605-16655” embroidered at the bottom of “Foot Licker”, can be seen as demarcating the dates this particular freak lived. These portraits are both icon and memorial, bridging our desires (hopes) and losses (fears).

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    "Button In The Garden of Earthly Delights III", 2005.

    Inspired by Hieronymus Bosch’s “The Garden of Earthly Delights”, the central character in these acrylic paintings on panel is my dog, Button, who represents nature undefiled. These verdant gardens of an imaginary future are also inhabited by Button’s companions, the “Clothespin Freaks”; whimsical, anthropomorphic, mythological figures made of clear plastic clothespins, doll’s body parts and sewn pieces. Developed in a series of drawings titled Clothespin Tarot, these figures are now making their appearance in this garden of earthly delights. Together they observe disturbingly surreal quasi-botanical forms growing from the ground, hanging from the trees or floating in the air. A closer inspection reveals them to be human body parts. Many of the elements in the painting are infused with my blood to symbolize the idea of sacrifice for betterment. Recognition brings uncertainty and discomfort. The disruptive presence of mankind in paradise is neutralized through the body’s fragmentation—a destructive process but, ultimately, one that brings harmony to nature.

Mentors