Mounia Aram, founder of African animation distribution & production specialist Mounia Aram Company, and France’s Gobelins, named the world’s top-ranked animation school of 2022 by Animation Career Review 2022, have announced a strategic partnership to promote and develop pan-African animation.
Starting next July, the partners will run a Summer School in Ghana for 15 days, dedicated to 3D character animation. Under a common goal of developing animation on the continent, particularly in Morocco, and promoting diversity in the industry, Gobelins and Mounia Aram Company launch this initiative to:
- Promote education and training in animation art
- Strengthen local skills in 2D and/or 3D animation production and storytelling
- Boost the number of women in the animation industry
The cross continental alliance was conceived in response to the growth of the local industry, “Animation Made in Africa,” and demand for more local, professional talent to develop productions more closely focused on the cultural values of the continent.
Aram is an animation industry professional with more than 19 years’ experienced. She launched Mounia Aram Company to build a bridge between Africa and the international market, by presenting animation projects to producers for coproduction and to broadcasters for distribution. After winning the Black in Animation Award in the cultural innovator category, Aram, who is originally from Morocco, developed a training program with the launch of her animation studio in Agadir.
“I couldn’t imagine launching my animation studio in Morocco without a training program, I want to give the necessary tools for the talents to acquire the international requirements. I wanted to partner with the best and bring the excellence in terms of animation training,” said Aram. “This partnership with Gobelins allows me to develop the excellence in my studio in Morocco and in Africa, with a first step my collaboration in the summer school in Ghana.”
This is not the first time that Gobelins has gotten involved in the African industry’s development. With the support of Netflix, for the past five years the school has offered a dozen African scholarship students the opportunity to study in its Master of Arts in Character Animation and Animated Filmmaking program. In 2021, Gobelins participated alongside the French Institute of South Africa (IFAS) in partnership with international mentors Diprente Studios and Tshimologong Animation Academy to create a platform to introduce emerging African talent to global film and animation markets.
“This partnership is fully in line with the school’s international strategy of spreading its know-how to meet local training needs. The potential for talent is booming in Africa,” said Erik Anspach, Director General of Gobelins. “We therefore have a role to play as a major player in this field to promote the learning and development of the art of animation.”
Cécile Blondel, Director of International Development of the Paris school, added, “We really liked Mounia’s project. It touches us so much because of the idea of being able to pass on our knowledge and to offer young talents the opportunity to work on their own narrative. Moreover, we are obviously very concerned about supporting women in animation and diversity in general.”