Christine Panushka | Blood of the Family Tree

Juror Presentation

No Longer Available


The State Theatre #1 Thu, Mar 23, 2023 1:00 PM



Jay Sandwiess


Ann Arbor Art Center



Jay & Susan Sandweiss

Blood of the Family Tree
 is Christine Panushka’s experimental animated film that explores questions of connections, hidden family history, disease, and our ties to the past. Her objective was to create a work of animation that uses complex cinematic structures to tell a personal story, illustrating the connective tissue that binds humanity to history. 

“This is a film which is a most beautiful perfection and is not of this world. A perfect balance between abstraction and emotion and from this point of view it is a landmark in the history of world cinema and the history of animation.” – Berenice Reynaud, film historian & curator

Blood of the Family Tree
Los Angeles, CA | 2021 | 64 | DCP
The film portrays a struggle to understand the past and its effect on the present. Recent research suggests that trauma is genetically passed down through generations. Issues of inheritance, physical and cultural mores, and traumas situated within the body are represented by images of grandmothers, keepers, ancestors, watchers, blood cells, bones, knots, lace, trees, and roots. Can we escape our history? Probably not, but we can recognize it and make peace with it.

Christine Panushka is an internationally known artist, filmmaker/animator, and educator. Her films have won numerous awards including the Grand Prize at the Aspen Filmfest. Panushka was jury chair at the Hiroshima International Animation Festival, has curated many animation programs, and has served on the selection committees for numerous animation festivals. She is professor emerita in expanded animation: research + practice at the University of Southern California.