The 22nd Annual Society for Animation Studies Conference

Heather Holian

Art, Animation and the Collaborative Process

last year’s SAS conference I proposed animation was a fine art form and considered the obstacles to such a designation, including the collaborative nature of studio animation. This paper further develops these observations by discussing collaboration within the history of art and animation, and how this model for art making distinguishes animation from other traditional artistic media. The work of individual concept artists will serve as illustrative examples throughout this discussion, which seeks to posit a new, more inclusive definition for (fine) art.

Biographical statement: Heather Holian is an Assistant Professor of Art History at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro. She has a Ph.D. in Italian Renaissance Art and an established publication record in that field. Recently, Prof. Holian began to pursue research on the Pixar Studios, while teaching “The Art of Disney and Pixar,” a course she designed. Her essay, “An Animated Debate: Studio Animation as Fine Art?” will appear in Blackwell’s forthcoming anthology of animation, edited by Paul Wells. Her proposed paper springs from information recently gathered at the Pixar Studios, and represents part of a book-length project on Pixar artists.