Year Original Format Country Genre Length
1980 35mm color Poland
Se-Ma-For Studio
Live Action Animation 08:10

"Thirty-six characters from different stages of life - representations of different times - interact in one room, moving in loops, observed by a static camera. I had to draw and paint about 16.000 cell-mattes, and make several hundred thousand exposures on an optical printer. It took a full seven months, sixteen hours per day, to make the piece. The miracle is that the negative got through the process with only minor damage, and I made less than one hundred mathematical mistakes out of several hundred thousand possibilities. In the final result, there are plenty of flaws ® black lines are visible around humans, jitters caused by the instability of film material resulting from film perforation and elasticity of celluloid, changes of colour caused by the fluctuation in colour temperature of the projector bulb and, inevitably, dirt, grain and scratches.”

- Zbig Rybczynski –Looking to the Future - Imagining the Truth,” in FranÐois Penz, Maureen Thomas, Cinema& Architecture. Mþliús, Mallet-Stevens, Multimedia, BFI, London, 1997


"In Tango, Rybczynski exploits this concept of the single offscreen space by filling it with a plethora of actions. It soon becomes obvious that such a small space, that of a small room, could not possibly contain all the actions taking place. Rybczynski also makes critical use of off-screen space, exposing it for the artifice it is. Off-screen space is the imaginary area beyond the edge of the screen, and in front of or behind the camera. There are a number of ways through to off-screen space in Tango - a window and a door in the back wall, doors on either side of the room, and cupboard which also has its uses. Rybczynski orchestrates his entrances and exits with great precision.”

- Roger Noake, Animation Techniques, Secaucus, Chartwell Books Inc., 1988.

A child enters a room to get back his ball. Slowly, the entire space becomes filled with bizarre characters, all of them intent on repeating the same gesture ad infinitum.

Supersize photo


* Oscar - for Best Animated Short Film, Academy Awards® 1983
* Jury Commendation for Experimental Technique and Prize of the Public - Ottawa, Canada 1982
* Best Animation - Tamperee, Finland 1982
* Grand Prize and Prize of the Public - Annency, France 1981
* Grand Prize and Fipresci Award - Oberhausen Film Festival, Germany 1981
* Grand Prize and Prize of the Public - Hueska, Spain 1981
* Main Prize - Cracow Film Festival, Poland 1981

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