An Evening with Glen Keane and John Canemaker at MoMA

John Canemaker (L) and Glen Keane (R)

John Canemaker (L) and Glen Keane (R)

On Monday evening, April 6, to a packed audience at MoMA in New York City, John Canemaker, Kanbar professor and Academy Award-winning animation film director, introduced and participated in a discussion with Glen Keane, a master of character animation at Disney for nearly four decades.

Glen Keane has brought some of Disney’s most beloved figures to life. More than a few of them, including Ariel, the Beast, Aladdin, Tarzan, and Pocahontas, have become immortal through his unique artistry. Keane’s indelible contribution to the medium has been to preserve the subtlety and warmth of the hand-drawn animated line while also pioneering, and assimilating, cutting-edge digital technologies that make gravity-defying motion and three-dimensional depth and volume possible.

This special Modern Mondays featured the New York theatrical premiere of Keane’s most recent project, the soaring, gossamer Duet (2014). An independent collaboration with Google’s Advance Technology and Projects Group (ATAP), Duet is an interactive hand-drawn animation that explores spatial and sensory awareness. 

Keane traced his career in richly illustrated film clips and other imagery, from his mid-1970s Disney apprenticeship to his groundbreaking experiments in situating hand-drawn characters in computer-generated environments. Keane, who retired from Disney in 2013, then took part in an onstage conversation with Professor Canemaker, who has written twelve books on animation history.