At the edge of the Rubicon | Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design, Jerusalem

At the edge of the Rubicon

An academic conference following the work of Gil Alkabetz’

The Screen-Based Arts Department is pleased to invite you to the conference
‘At the edge of the Rubicon’ - an academic conference following the work of Gil Alkabetz
The conference will focus on the body of work created by Gil Alkabetz (1957-2022), and explore  his significant impact on the fields of animation and illustration, as well as his distinct teaching methodology in animation. Gil Alkabetz, an esteemed graduate of Bezalel Academy and a professor at the Konrad Wolf Film University of Babelsberg, Germany, was a prominent figure in the realm of animation and illustration.

Participants: Prof. Frank Gessner, Aya Amikam, Benjamin Freidenberg, Dina Goder, Ayala Sharot, Prof. Ady Cohen, Mor Israeli, Ester Amrami, Tomer Eshed, Hagar Faibish, Tova Gertner, Tsahi Farber, Ben Molina, Tsvika Oren, Yair Harel.

At the Fuaye Auditorium, a collection of Gil Alkabetz's works and writings will be showcased, including an animation manifesto that he composed prior to his passing. This manifesto, which will be unveiled for the first time, will be presented prior to its official publication in September.

A selection of Films by Gil Alkavetz will be screened at the end of the conference.
Conference program:
09:15-10:00 Gathering and entrance to the hall (9:50)
10:00 Opening - Greeting from the head of the department, Tami Bernstein
10:05-11:30 From BITZBUTZ to BITZA (SWAMP) - Philosophy, ideas and paradoxes as a mechanism for an animated story

Screening of the films
‘Rubicon’ (1997)
'Bizbutz' (1984)

Session Opening: Tami Berenstein, Head of the Screen Based Arts Department, Bezalel

Aya Amikam - ‘A Solution’ by Gil Alkabetz
Rubicon is a riddle. How do you move three characters from here to there? Gil Alkabatz offers us a solution of pure creativity. Make a salad; a funny and philosophically refreshing solution.

Aya Amikam is an interdisciplinary creator engaged in illustration, animation, ceramics, and video art, who graduated from Bezalel’s Visual Communication Department, and is now a lecturer in illustration and animation.

Benjamin Freidenberg - Moving Image as a Resistance Movement: The socio-political context of animation pioneers in France
The lecture will focus on the socio-political backdrop which influenced the genesis of animation in France.

Benjamin Freidenberg is a film director and scholar. His PhD research at the Romance Studies Department at the Hebrew University targets film language and theories of cinematography.

Ayala Sharot - Nonsense and Philosophy: Thoughts about time and space in Gil Alkabetz's work
Alkabetz's art transforms reality's rules, evolving puzzles into delightful absurdity. Perception shifts through reshaping time and space.

Ayala Sharot is an award-winning film director, scriptwriter and animator. She currently serves as the chairwoman of the Animation Guild of Israel. 

Dina Goder - Paradox - The basis of the creative method of Gil Alkabetz
Gil Alkabets' art builds on unexpected contradictions both intellectual and visual. It's a game. At the same time, his paradoxes make it possible to see an object and topic from a new perspective. 

Dina Goder is an animation critic and teacher, the founder and program director of the BCF Animation Festival, programmer, and selector and jury member of many animation festivals.

Tova Gertner - Since Forever: Unraveled songs and the creative process of the music video "Good and Better"

The song ‘Good and Better’ (2022) belongs to a period, to a feeling that slips between the heart and the everyday - 'It's so hard to think that it will be good, alright...'. 
In the music video Gil Alkabetz created for the song, he brings the subtext of the song, the lost, entangled, stuck person that is inside each of us. The song and the clip speak from within one another, giving voice to the subconscious.

Tova Gartner is an Israeli pop and rock singer, a pioneer of the indie style in Israel, a graduate of Bar Ilan University and the Academy of Music at Tel Aviv University.

11:15-11:30 Break

Teaching animation - the creative spark

The screening of the films:
'Rebound' (2020)

Session Opening: Osi Wald

For the desktop publishing project EXPANDED ANIMATION WOR(L)DS: A SPHERICAL BOOK IN PROGRESS, Gil Alkabetz wrote shortly before his death the text ANIMATION AND THE ART OF RESTRICTION.

Frank Geßner is a multimedia artist and professor of “Theory and Practice of Visual Arts“ at Film University Babelsberg KONRAD WOLF.

Prof. Ady Cohen - The inner and outer music in Gil Alkabetz's cinematic world from the point of view of the composer of 5 of his films
Gil's special, deep connection with music and sound influenced his artistic expression, visual language, the philosophy submerged in his films' veiled messages and his work with me on the music.

Prof. Ady Cohen is a composer for film, TV, theater, commercials, dance, and concert music, the winner of the Israeli Academy Award, the ACUM Award and more, and a professor at Berklee College of Music Boston 

Ester Amrami, Tomer Eshed & Hagar Faibish - Gil the Animentor (Video Lecture  edited by Nurit Israeli)

In this video lecture, the speakers will talk about Gil Alkabetz as an artist and mentor based on their professional and personal acquaintance with him.

Ester Amrami - Film and television director
Tomer Ashad - Animation director, character designer, and owner of an animation studio in Berlin
Hagar Fevish - Artist and creator of animation
All three are successful Israeli creators, festival winners, based in Berlin, as well as graduates of Filmuniversität Konrad Wolf, where Gil Alkabetz taught as a professor.

Mor Israeli - Don't Blink, The One Second Film
An exercise that Gil liked is "the one second film". How can a story be told in only 24 frames? The power of composition, sound, and movement in creating ultimate storytelling and an unforgettable moment.

Mor Israeli is a film director and a lecturer based between Paris and Jaffa. Her award winning films have been exhibited in numerous festivals worldwide. 

12:45- 13:45 Break

13:45-15:00 Session No. 3
Travel to China - The secret of the single frame

The screening of the films:
'The Da Vinci Time Code' (2009)
‘Travel to China' (2002)

Session Opening: Noam Nadav

Tsahi Farber - The hidden and lesser known side of Gil Alkabetz
In addition to being a wonderful animator, Gil Alkabetz was also an excellent illustrator and a fine comic artist. The lecture will review some of his illustrations and comic works, explain the background behind them and also reveal an unknown story or two behind the scenes.

Tsahi Farber is an Israeli illustrator, curator, comic artist, and writer. 'Stones', his first novel in prose, was shortlisted for the 'Sapir Award' for literature, and won the 'Minister of Culture Award in the field of Hebrew literary creation.

Yair Harel - Playfulness and illusion in Gil Alkabetz’s works
Gil Alkabetz played with the viewers' visual perception, a game that seems to be an optical illusion. We will try to see how Gil used illusions to place emotion and humor against tough reality.

Yair Harel is a graduate of Bezalel and the Royal College of Art, an active animator in the Israeli film, TV and high-tech industries, and an animation lecturer at Shenkar and Minshar.

Tsvika Oren - Small details: Fun, responsibility and ‘let them work’
Clues, multi-meaning, references and professional responsibility. For example, the ants and the dotted dress in “Morir de Amor”; the ship and the green train in “Travel to China”.

Tsvika Oren has been creating animated films since 1971. He established the first Israeli animators’ association (1977 - 1989); co-est. Asifa Israel (1985); directed the first international animation festival in Israel (1994-1998); established and directed The Animation Center, TLV Cinematheque (1990 – 2003); is a member of Asifa Int’l board of directors; a lecturer, journalist and an amateur gardener.

Ben Molina - Artistic Movement
Da Vinci's Time Code by Gil Alkabetz tells a unique narrative through a single painting. The lecture explores motion, temporality, and filmmaker influence, revealing insights into animation at its core

Ben Molina is the Director of the Animation Guild of Israel, Art Director of ANIMIX Festival, a filmmaker and a lecturer at Shenkar College, based in Tel Aviv.

15:00 - Screening of selected works by Gil Alkabetz

Lead committee: Tami Berenstein, Osi Wald
Lector committee: Nurit Israeli, Prof. Rutu Modan, Dani Kermanת Tami Berenstein, Osi Wald
The conference was made possible by the great contribution of Nurit Israeli. 

For security reasons, participation in the conference is subject to pre-registration at the link >>

Thursday | 29.6.23 | 10:00
Bezalel Academy of Arts and Design Jerusalem 
Russell Berrie Auditorium 
Jack, Joseph and Morton Mandel Campus, 1 Zamora Street, Jerusalem