The 18th edition of Berlin’s Pictoplasma Conference will mark a return to in-person activities for the annual event.

Between September 14 and 18, 2022, Pictoplasma’s focus will be “Whose Community?”, exploring the new ways in which artists collaborate and share work. The character design conference will offer its usual artist presentations, screenings, panels, and networking opportunities, as well as a new-to-2022 marketplace on the last day of the conference.

Confirmed conference speakers include, among many others, illustrator and animation director Alex Kiesling (U.S.), Marcel the Shell with Shoes On director Dean Fleischer-Camp (U.S.), artist and animator Shir Pakman (Israel), and Belgian animator and felt puppet maker extraordinaire, Emma De Swaef, whose most recent directorial credit is for Netflix’s The House “Segment I: ‘And Heard Within a Lie Is Spun,’” co-directed with her creative partner Marc James Roels.

Under the “Characters in Motion” banner, conference programmers have organized 70 short films thematically across four screenings: “Solo,” “Duet,” “Psychedelic Midnight Mix,” and “Chaos.” Fifty-plus filmmakers are confirmed to be in attendance for post-screening Q&A’s, including Julian Glander (U.S.), Elenor Kopka (Germany), Peter Javidpour (U.S.), Sophie Koko Gate (U.K.), and Christopher Rutledge (U.S.).

Some standout shorts include:

Tennis Ball on His Day Off by Julian Glander from “Program 1: Solo”

Bestia by Hugo Covarrubias (CL) from “Program 2: Duet”

Hotel Kalura by Sophie Koko Gate from “Program 3: Psychedelic Midnight Mix”

Zoon by Jonatan Schwenk (DE) from “Program 4: Chaos”

The screenings will round out a line up of panel discussions, artist talks, exhibitions, and Pechakucha-style sharing opportunities offered through the conference’s Character Lab.

On the final day of the weekend, the Character Market will offer attendees the option to book a free stall to showcase and sell their own prints, zines, comics, sculptures, editions, and other items.

The full program of the 18th Pictoplasma will take place at Silent Green, a former crematorium. Three off-site exhibitions will be held at Rainbow Unicorn, neurotitan, and, to remain in thematic line with the main venue, in an abandoned building in the St. Nicholas and St. Mary Cemetery cemetery.

Pictured Above: ‘Fight!’ by Emma De Swaef & Marc James Roels, the work of Alex Kiesling, “Marcel the Shell with Shoes On” by Dean Fleischer-Camp