Yoji Kuri

Birth:Apr 9, 1928
Yji Kuri is a Japanese cartoonist and independent filmmaker. One of if not the most important figures in the history of Japanese independent animation he was the unofficial leader and most prolific of the Animation Association of Three collective who kickstarted the renaissance of modernstyled independently made adultaimed animation in early 1960s Japan. He is known internationally for the very black comedy of his films with the typically nave style of his cartooning often belying the surreal obscene and disturbing situations they depict though he has worked in a variety of styles and mediums including pixilation this made them a favorite among the fervently countercultural audiences which included such filmmakers as Ren Laloux of the first few years of the Annecy International Animated Film Festival and in a 1967 publication he was considered to be the most significant and the only Japanese animator whose work is known in the West which is to disregard the Tei Animation features and Astro Boy series that were first seen in the West around the same time that Kuris first several films were and mentioned in passing in the same publication though these were not known as works of an individual and characteristic filmmaker and often had their Japanese origin played down. He is also known in Japan for his comics a collection of which earned him the 1958 Bungeishunj Manga Award. Though now retired from film making he continues to illustrate and to teach animation at Laputa Art Animation School. In 2012 he received a Lifetime Achievement Award at the World Festival of Animated Film Animafest Zagreb. Source: Wikipedia Website: http://www.yojikuri.jp/