Originally from Taiwan, Ivyy Chen is an animation director and illustrator based in London. Her recently completed passion project, Isle of Chair, is a six-minute animation inspired by Haruki Murakami’s Norwegian Wood and her own, and others’, experience of mental illness.
The short film is inspired by the following question: ‘If a fallen chair symbolises death, loss, damage and dysfunction, would you want to help the chair to stand again? If the chair can never stand in the way that you prefer, would you accept that? Or, would you let it be?’
It’s not the first time Ivvy has used the symbolism of the chair in her work. “Over the past five years, I have been telling many stories through the chairs in picture books, illustration and animation shorts,” she explains. “I explore the diverse ways in which people connect to chairs and how these everyday objects can embody various emotions and connections. I like to use the symbolism of the chair to tell stories about emotions and connection. A chair could represent a role, a position, an identity, a relationship or a state of mind.”