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The Art Department - 5x Festival's headliners

Do you want to know everything about the design process of films, animation and games? Then don't miss The Art Department. On April 21 and 22 Playgrounds organizes this international festival in Eindhoven where young makers, established professionals, students, industry experts and fans come together. The program includes artist talks, panels, demos, competitions and just lots of inspiration. The world's leading designers and filmmakers will tell you all about their experiments, successes and failures. These are the headliners this year.

Aaron Blaise

An animation legend who collaborated with Walt Disney Studios for Beauty and the Beast, The Lion King, Aladdin, Pocahontas and Mulan. Aaron also co-directed Brother Bear, which received an Oscar nomination for Best Animated Feature. An unpredictable turn in his career caused him to revive his painting career. He shares his remarkable story at The Art Department.

Esben Lash

An artist talk from a storyteller at heart. Esben Lash is a Copenhagen-based illustrator and concept artist who has years of experience working with game and art studios worldwide. Well-known names he has worked with are Riot Games in Los Angeles, Sixmorevodka in Berlin, Artwoork Aps in Copenhagen and Atomhawk in Newcastle.

Tomm Moore

Animation director and producer Tomm Moore is one of those "rare birds" in the animation industry. As a viewer, you immediately feel the effect of his films on your state of mind; you're sort of hugged by his beautifully crafted stories. As co-founder of Cartoon Saloon animation studio, he has had a hand in The Secret of Kells, Song of the Sea and, more recently, Wolfwalkers. Tomm will give an artist talk at the Klokgebouw and a Q&A after screening his film Wolfwalkers at Natlab on Friday, April 22.

Playgrounds The Art Department - Wolfmakers
Playgrounds The Art Departmen

Aayna Vinaya

Illustrator Aayna Vinaya impresses everyone who explores her work with her fresh voice and unique style. Aayna's first talk for Playgrounds was during a live stream in 2021. Now that the world is opening up again, the organization could not miss the opportunity to invite Aayna for an artist talk in Eindhoven.

Justin van der Lek

A Dutch visual artist who lives and works in Los Angeles. Justin van der Lek worked on productions such as Avengers: Endgame, Star Wars: The Last Jedi & The Force Awakens, Iron Man 3, The Hobbit, Gran Torino and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest. During The Art Department, he will give a remarkable insight into his creative process.

The Art Department will be held on April 21 and 22 in the Klokgebouw in Eindhoven.

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