In 2010 an animated journey began when Andres Mänd, the head of the Animation Department of Volda University Norway was invited to be on the jury for CubAnima film festival in Havana, Cuba. There he met the founder and director of Animae Caribe Animation Festival Camille Selvon Abrahams. There was an immediate connection and discussion about creating synergies between the islands though each was from the opposite side of the Atlantic. After five days of intensive jury work in Cuba, both University department heads realised that they shared a lot more in common. Both institutions ran the best animation schools and the coziest animation film festivals in their respective countries. They decided to look into possibilities for future collaborations. There have been trips across the Atlantic both ways, many discussions about animation and life in general, sharing of knowledge, country and culture.
So yes, the Vikings are coming to Trinidad, but not to invade. Instead of swords and shields, they bring with them ideas, pencils and cameras. Mänd acknowledges that they are coming also to learn, to conduct workshops, to get inspired, and to enjoy the fabulous Animation festival. However most importantly they are coming to sign a student exchange agreement between the University of Trinidad and Tobago and Volda University. “The main attraction on our team is Ms Anita Killi, a True Viking, former Volda University student, farmer, mother of four and world famous director of animated shorts. The rest of our crew consist Arne Humberset, Head of International Office of Volda University. The multitalented Dave King, who we stole from the British animation Industry seven years ago (sorry Britons!) and myself, the Head of the Animation Department at Volda University College”
This is a momentous time for the University of Trinidad and Tobago as it is set to launch a degree in Digital Media Arts with specialisation in Animation, Music Technology and Gaming in 2017. Ms Killi’s award winning film ‘Angry Man’ and her presentation will be screened at The Academy for Performing Arts on Wednesday 26th October 11am.