What influenced the piece?
I was looking mainly at Jan Svankmajer animations as well as some shorts by Walerian Borowczyk. I was attracted to their moments of total stillness, a single frame of animation - followed by these eruptions.
"I think of my work as being like a bestiary. In the old form of the Beast Epic there would be these stock characters – like a fox or a bear – which would continually reappear, and in my work they’re now these self-aware motifs. I try to be as chaotic in my thinking about it as possible and so it’s really about what serves what I’m trying to do at that moment. Sometimes it makes sense that these things cross over with their identities from different places in a fan-fictiony way, and sometimes it’s a much more self-contained narrative, like a Beckett-ish duologue going on between a bird and a fox for instance. But I certainly see them as all being pretty interrelated to one another and arguably all the same character." -- Matt Copson
CLICK HERE to read the full interview between Matt Copson and Guy Mackinnon-Little for Tank Magazine
Beast Epics is a popular genre in various literatures, consisting of a lengthy cycle of animal tales that provides a satiric commentary on human society. Although individual episodes may be drawn from fables, the beast epic differs from the fable not only in length but also in putting less emphasis on a moral.
The earliest European beast epics were in Latin, but vernacular epics in French, German, and Dutch existed in the late Middle Ages. Among the most famous are the 10th- and 11th-century cycles in which the hero is Reynard the Fox. The cycle includes the tale of the Fox and Chanticleer the Cock, the basis later of “The Nun’s Priest’s Tale” in Geoffrey Chaucer’s The Canterbury Tales. John Dryden used the beast epic as the framework of the poem The Hind and the Panther (1687), and Joel Chandler Harris’ Uncle Remus: His Songs and His Sayings (1880) derived many episodes from beast tales carried to the United States by African slaves. Animal Farm (1945), an antiutopian satire by George Orwell, is a modern adaptation of the beast tale.