Art History Research Seminar: Alan Cholodenko – School of Literature, Art and Media Art History Research Seminar: Alan Cholodenko – School of Literature, Art and Media

Art History Research Seminar: Alan Cholodenko

‘Like Tears in Rain’: The Crypt, the Haunted House, of Animation and Memory in the Era of Hyperreality

Alan Cholodenko


This paper draws forth from and extends my claims in my Introductions to my two animation anthologies  and  a  number  of  my  essays  over  the  last  28  years  theorising  that  animation is not only a form of film but film is a form of it, that animation is not delimited to film but is always already, never not, transdisciplinary, transinstitutional, transtechnological and transmedial—put  simply,  all  the  arts,  sciences,  technologies  and  media  are  forms  of  animation—that for decades animation has been or is being surpassed by animation’s morphed  hyperreal form—hyperanimation—that  today animation as hyperanimation  comes  forward as the most compelling, pervasive, singular process of the contemporary world, and that, in putting animation at stake, what hyperanimation likewise puts at stake is life itself and death itself, motion itself and nonmotion itself, indeed the human and its world, informing that so-­called ‘turn to life’, for me the ‘turn to animation’, in the age of the Anthropocene, age for me commensurate with hyperreality.

This paper was presented as keynote address at The Third Annual Conference of Chinese Animation Research in 2018 in Chengdu, China, on 23 November of that year. It draws forth from what I call the animated, indeed animatic, Cryptic Complex of memory and my work on that global reanimator, the computer, to elaborate the impact of hyperreality, including of the computer as ‘defining technology’ of hyperreality, upon that memory and that Complex.  As formulated in my essay ‘The Crypt, the Haunted House, of Cinema’, Cultural Studies Review, vol. 10, no. 2, September, 2004.

‘“Computer Says No”, or: The Erasure of the Human’, in Erasure: The Spectre of Cultural Memory, eds. Brad Buckley and John Conomos, Libri Publishing, England, 2014.

Dr Cholodenko thinks it would be helpful, though not necessary, to anyone attending to have a read of the two footnoted essays before the Seminar, both of which are under his name in

He’d also like to draw to the attention of art historians for their interest his ‘The Animator as Artist, the Artist as Animator’, Animation Studies, vol. 10, 2015, likewise in



Nov 07 2019


3:00 pm - 4:30 pm


Schaeffer Seminar Room 210
RC Mills Building A26

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