Jack Sachs has created an animated film tour of the Tate Britain, where his brilliantly bizarre, plasticine-like CG characters move around the gallery amid the art. Commissioned by Tate Collective for the BP Loud Tate event, a day of performances and workshops, SHHH! sees Jack’s animated creations invade motion-tracked footage of the gallery’s interior space.
A giant floating head, a dancing inflatable tube guy and a wobbly pencil make their way slowly around the gallery, while happy Brussels sprouts pour out of a painting, all soundtracked by otherworldly music by sound studio Father. The film was made with support from Blinkink Studio and photography by Samantha Rubinstein.
“It’s not often you get a chance to film and work with a place like this,” says Jack, “so I knew from the start I would make a 3D motion tracked film to incorporate the gallery.” He was asked to create a piece that would engage young people with the Tate Britain, which he believes “can feel a bit austere and inaccessible to people with less of an interest in art history,” so aimed to create a fun and accessible film for “all sorts of people”.
“The film is a sideways look at the hushed, quiet nature of a space like the Tate Britain in contrast to all of the loud and exciting artworks it houses,” Jack explains. “My intention was that the film would feel like a casual stroll around the gallery on a sleepy midweek afternoon, encountering lots of loud and disruptive works of art just doing their thing.”
It was made in just three weeks, including time for very-early-morning shoots before the gallery’s opening hours, and reactive animation inspired by those visits. “The process was very organic. A lot of the ideas that I’d had prior to shooting never made it into the film as they didn’t feel like genuine responses to the space or artworks. We got to make a lot of fun, creative decisions that weren’t bound by a client brief.”
“Typically my animations are very bright, cartoonish and unrealistic, so the contrast between that and the nice HD footage is so big that it kind of works.”
Watch SHHH! below.