Focusing on the relationship between drawing and animation, Rough Cut: Independent Japanese Animation consists of three short films produced outside mainstream commercial studios. Together, these works trace compelling innovations from early silent film to contemporary experimentation with collage and stop-motion. One example is Daumenreise #6 Kyoto (2008) by Maya Yonesho, an independent director whose body of work spans a range of techniques, including claymation, stop-motion, and hand-drawn animation.

For her Daumenreise series, a name that means “thumb travel” in German, Yonesho invites participants to create flipbook animations in response to a particular city—in this case, Kyoto, Japan. She films the animations with the city as a backdrop, leaving the participant’s thumbs in the frame as they hold their drawings. Composed of ink on rice paper, the drawings fluctuate from bold geometric bursts of color to delicate, monochromatic lines. To learn more about this film, visit Rough Cut, on view through March 3, 2018.