MIAF 2021 Artwork

A puppetry trail in the Czech Republic - Photo 31
A puppetry trail in the Czech Republic - Photo 31
31. Drawings of Jiri Trnka ‘Self Portrait Puppet’, 1930 by Soncha Iacono, 2018

There is a great story behind the artwork for MIAF 2021.

In 2018 Soncha Iacono fulfilled a long held-dream, journeying to the Czech Republic to immerse herself in the incredible historical troves of puppets used by some of the most renowned masters of puppet animation.

Nowadays, Hobart-based and working at MONA, for more than a decade before that Soncha had been on the ACMI team and was always one of the first to welcome us into the building each year… and she always brought a gift of a beautifully drawn, ethereal portrait. It’s now quite a collection.

When her trip to the land of Trnka, Svankmajer and Barta hit our radar we asked her to contribute an article about her experiences.

What came back, though, was WAY beyond anything we expected; not just an incredible article deep-diving into the incredible puppets that populated decades of superb films but a collection of wonderful sketches that cried out for their own time in the spotlight.

It didn’t take long to realise we had found the wellspring for our 2020 artwork. When 2020 morphed into 20][21 we were determined to make even better use of this incredible gift and we’re looking forward to populating the next MIAF with this cast of characters.

Each one of them has a fascinating history and backstory and the best window on that is Soncha’s ‘first-person’ essay… right here. Welcome to MIAF 2021 everybody.