France’s leading animation festival at Annecy (June 13-18) has debuted the official poster for this year’s return to an on-side event. To celebrate, organizers called on celebrated illustrator and poster art aficionado Laurent Durieux to apply his recognizable retro-futurist style.
The result is an illustrated snapshot from a beautiful journey, with Annecy’s iconic lake as the destination. The scene also subtly hints at neighboring Switzerland, whose animated creations will be spotlighted as this year’s focus territory.
“Working with Laurent Durieux was a dream for the Annecy team,” said Annecy Artistic Director Marcel Jean. “His exceptionally refined poster captures your attention and draws the eye in to explore the illustration’s details up close. The play on light and color radiates a great sense of calm. So, let’s set sail on the animation yacht!”
Illustration © Laurent Durieux
Working as an independent designer since 1994, Laurent Durieux gained notoriety in 2011 with his François à l’américaine poster, created for an exhibition commemorating the work of director Jacques Tati; subsequently, he was contacted by several American publishers and galleries, including the Mondo gallery in Austin, Texas, for whom he has since produced alternative film posters.
Durieux’s work is admired by many American directors, especially Francis Ford Coppola, Steven Spielberg and Paul Thomas Anderson. In 2015, he created the poster for the 42nd Telluride Film Festival. In 2017, he was recruited by the Utopiales Festival team, to create the poster for its 18th edition, which also features an exhibition dedicated to the artist.
In 2018, Durieux’s friend, Belgian comic-book creator François Schuiten, tapped him to do the original coloring for The Last Pharaoh (2019) — from the Blake and Mortimer series — written by Jaco Van Dormael, Thomas Gunzig and Schuiten, and illustrated by the latter. The same year, Durieux exhibited a dozen new screenprints at the Mondo Gallery. Among these is a poster for Apocalypse Now, which was used as the official visual for the film’s re-release in cinemas worldwide.
In 2021, a retrospective of Durieux’s work was held at MIMA (Millennium Iconoclast Museum of Art) in Brussels, as well as a smaller-scale exhibition at the Forum des images in Paris.
The 2022 Annecy Festival is planned for a 100% in-person event; accreditations are now open at annecy.org.