Deborah Szapiro is an award winning creative producer, designer, curator and academic. Deborah teaches in Animation Studio, her teaching and research integrates animation history, theory and practice. Deborah has a track record for producing innovative animation and documentary projects that have been screened extensively by broadcasters and film festivals internationally. Awards to films include two AFI awards, Dendy, ATOM and IF awards, the Gordon Bruce award for Humour, The PATHE Award, The Shell Canada Award and the BANFF Television Award for Best Animated Series among others.
In her curatorial practice she was founder and Festival Director for the Japanime Film Festival, co-director of the Sydney International Animation Festival and curates animation programs and events locally and internationally. Specialist areas of curation include Indigenous animation, nationalities of animated cinema and the work of women animation directors. Deborah has worked closely with numerous cultural and arts organisations including, the ABC, SBS, the Powerhouse Museum, Film Australia, the AFC, WIFT, ASDA, The Japan Foundation, The Olympic Arts Festival, The Korean Cultural Centre, The State Library of NSW, Historic Houses Trust, Vivid, the State Library of Queensland and the Sydney Museum.
Deborah’s research looks to animation’s potential as an agent for cultural resilience, social change and innovation, combined with the expanding creative territories that newer technologies open up to explore alternative production and viewing contexts for animation media.
Szapiro, D.E. 2015, 'Strong Language, Strong Culture, Strong People: Indigenous Animation at the 17th National Remote Indigenous Media Festival', Render : the annual journal of creative Australian animation, vol. 1, no. 1, pp. 18-27.View/Download from: UTS OPUS
We are standing around the surprisingly deep, dry and perfectly formed, Wanirri
Yankirri-kirlangu (Emu Rockhole), situated about thirty to forty minutes drive from
Lajamanu, a remote Indigenous community on the northern edge of the Tanami
desert in the Northern Territory. Lajamanu Elder, Jerry Jangala Patrick, has
generously shared with us the Karnanganja Jukurrpa (Emu Dreaming) connected
to the seasonal waterhole and explained its significance as a Dreaming site
associated with a songline that stretches from the coast to inland Australia. Wanirri
Yankirri-kirlangu also serves as a compass and a geographical marker of
consensual boundaries between Indigenous nations.
Szapiro, D.E. 2010, 'The Language of Dreaming, Country and the Queen', Catalogue Essay PAF Oloumac 9th Festival of Film Animation, vol. 9, no. 1.
Szapiro, D.E. 2016, 'Who Cares About Nine Old Men', Contemporary Art and Feminist Cluster SCA, Sydney, pp. 20-24.
Szapiro, D., 'Australian Indigenous Animation Program', Brisbane International Animation Festival.
Szapiro, D., 'Down Under 1 and Down Under 2, Australian Women Animation Directors', Tricky Women International Animation Festival 2015, Metro kinokulturhaus Johannesgasse 4 1010 Wien.
Commissioned curation of two Special feature programs, Down Under 1 and Down Under 2 for the Tricky Women International Animation Festival in Austria.. The programs curated exemplar work by Australian women animation directors. Tricky Women is a major animation festival in Europe.
Szapiro, D., 'The Magic World of Karel Zeman', 3rd Czech and Slovak Film Festival of Australia.
Curated screening program of films by Czech animator Karel Zeman and Karel Zeman Behind the Scenes an exhibition of selected work from the Karel Zeman Museum