Womanimation! 2016 Brings a World of Animation to Providence

See work by women from all over the world at this one-day only film festival


If we’ve all learned anything from Disney and Pixar, it’s that animated films often contain powerful messages. At Womanimation! 2016, audiences and cinephiles alike will be able to experience compelling animated short films created by international female filmmakers.

The festival, now in its eighth year and brought to Providence by MergingArts Productions, will take place on Saturday, June 25 at AS220. The screenings will take place at 4:00, 6:00, and 8:00 pm and will each feature a slideshow introducing the filmmakers. The festival features creators from Europe, North America and the Middle East.

In their work, the filmmakers explore themes like gender roles, family relationships and womanhood. The visual styles will include traditional hand drawn images, computer animation and stop motion. In one film, The Tree, Czech animator Lucie Sunkova uses the unusual medium of paint on glass to create a parable about birth, death and the passage of time.

Toni Pennacchia, the Creative Director of MergingArts and a Rhode Island native, explains the motives behind the festival. “There is a goldmine of fantastic animated work by women around the world, which unfortunately often gets overlooked,” Pennacchia says. “Other than a couple European festivals, it is rare for audiences to get to see such a collection of work.” The goal of the festival, according to Pennacchia, is to strike a balance between being entertaining and being challenging by displaying a diverse range of thematic and visual themes.

The day will end with a reception hosted by Pennacchia and her partner, Paul Elsnau, during which filmmakers will receive awards created by previous festival participants. The audience will also be able to vote for their favorite shorts. With so much talent on display and films you wouldn’t see anywhere else, this is one festival you don’t want to miss.

115 Empire Street, Providence. 401-359-2576,

womanimation, as220, mergingarts productions, Toni Pennacchia, Paul Elsnau, marrissa ballard, providence monthly


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