“We focus on education, content development, talent management and production”
Industry Report: European Film Schools
Éva Katinka Bognár • Head of the Animation MA Programme, MOME Anim
The head of the Animation MA Programme discussed the main learning opportunities offered to prospective students by MOME Anim, one of the most important creative centres of Hungarian animation
We spoke to Éva Katinka Bognár, head of the Animation MA Programme at Hungary’s MOME Anim, in order to discuss the main learning opportunities that it offers to prospective students. This Budapest-based institution is part of both GEECT (European Grouping of Film and Television Schools) and CILECT (International Association of Film and Television Schools).
Cineuropa: What is MOME Anim’s teaching mission? What are the main benefits of attending it for prospective international students?
Éva Katinka Bognár: MOME Anim, at the Moholy-Nagy University of Art and Design Budapest, is one of the most important creative and intellectual centres of Hungarian animation. We focus on education, content development, talent management and production. Our BA provides a strong foundation of animation, filmmaking and design skills, and the two-year MA focusing on developing individual projects and unique creative initiatives is also available in English for international students. We’re proud that graduates of our programmes are able to reach festival and industry recognition. Our goal is to help them start a successful career, and we aim to inspire them to explore the continually expanding field of animation with us. For international students, the animation programme works as a hybrid course, wherein Hungarian and international students work in the same group. This requires flexibility, openness and a degree of independence — but also gives international students an opportunity to become integrated into the class and the local animation community.
What type of study programmes do you offer? What are the main subjects?
In our view, MOME Anim is a creative space where students can identify their own artistic goals through different practical and theoretical courses leading up to their graduation project. During MA studies, we don’t focus on chiselling technical skills, but aim to help students to find their own voice as creators of animated content, whether it’s leading them towards narrative films or something more groundbreaking.
Besides one-on-one consultations and courses by animation and film professionals, we also offer a strong theoretical support and research opportunities, along with follow-up programmes and international student mobility opportunities such as ASF (Animation Sans Frontieres). Moreover, we established partnerships that in the past years made it possible to have a budget for graduation films, thus giving graduating students opportunities to work with a professional team besides having other students helping them. When it comes to graduation projects, we don’t pose restrictions on techniques, approaches or themes. We believe that we can only maintain a truly creative environment through enabling this artistic freedom and diversity.
Do you provide any scholarships?
For all EU citizens, we can offer 100% tuition-free spaces at the school for their whole studies. The university is also working on establishing and finding additional scholarship opportunities. As for mobility grants we offer Erasmus programmes and are constantly working on finding new opportunities for students. Currently, we have no student housing on campus, but as Budapest universities have a very big community of international students, it’s usually easy to find apartments for rent in town.
How should a student prepare for the admission?
In the MA, applicants should submit a portfolio that proves their creative skills and that they are able to set individual artistic goals. After a round of selection based on portfolios, we invite them to a personal or online interview to discuss their work, and see if we can help them to reach their goals. We are happy to welcome students who come from non-animation programmes if they show exceptional commitment to the field, and their portfolio proves that they have the required skill.
How are you adapting teaching and other study activities owing to the pandemic?
During the pandemic, we went fully online and were happy to find that the experiment worked really well. As we work mainly on computers these days, students were able to complete courses through digital platforms, and we held successful graduation shows virtually as well.
Is there anything you would like to add?
We are really excited to welcome international students in our MA programme. MOME Anim has a unique support system, being part of a design university that has its own innovation centre focusing on research. We also have a newly built campus, and a very close-knit, supportive community of animation students who regularly enjoy MOME Anim cake-parties together and help each other with their projects — and in the long run, with their careers as well.
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