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Studio visit with Tétshim and Frank Mukunday

The filmmakers Tétshim and Frank Mukunday provide an insight into their work connecting experimental animation films and comics as artistic techniques.

© Tétshim / Frank Mukunday

Frank Mukunday and Tétshim are self-taught artists that have been producing animated films together since 2010. They live and work in Lubumbashi in Eastern Congo.

Starting from the individual artistic techniques of Tétshim (drawing) and Frank Mukunday (video), they produce experimental films such as “Cailloux”, “Kukinga” and “Machini” in their studio Crayon de cuivre (copper pen) in Lubumbashi. Using a mixture of raw materials such as stones, scrap metal, natural materials and chalk drawings, a visual universe with a special recognition value is created.

The film “Machini” is particularly well known. After the short film was presented at the Biennale of Lubumbashi, it went on an international tour. Among many other awards, “Machini” won the “Best short” at the Festival de Cine Africano de Tarifa 2020 (Spain), the “Zebu D’or Panafrican animation” at the 15th Rencontres du film court (Madagascar), the “Grand Prix International Stop Motion” at the StopTrik International Film Festival 2020 (Canada) and the “Jury Special Mention” at the GIRAF – International Festival of Independent Animation 2016 (Canada).

The animated film is a homage to the city of Lubumbashi, but also shows the negative consequences of the mining industry in the area. The exploitation of the mines neighbouring Lubumbashi has caused severe environmental pollution and destruction also enhancing human conflicts.

In April 2021, “Machini” will also be published as an adapted comic, a critical research on the industrialisation of the world and its impact on humans and the environment. In this video, Tétshim and Frank Mukunday explain the process from chalk drawing to animation and from there to comic.