Two of my favourite animations of all time are the advert H5 did for Areva, and their Royksopp video. I can watch them over and over again; they’re so good. So I went to the H5 website recently to see if there was anything else they’d done like that, and found the video for Alex Gopher. I’m sure I’ve seen it before somewhere, but it was a long time ago and I hadn’t made the connection it was done by H5 too. It’s available to view on YouTube, but you can see it on H5‘s (all flash) website by clicking ‘films’, then ‘clips’, then ‘alex gopher’.

Anyway, I like things like this, where the label is the thing itself, and it reminds me of the National Geographic trailers for Seconds from Disaster that I linked to before. I’m thinking it would be amusing to remake Powers of Ten in this style - zooming into the word ‘galaxy’ to see it made up of widely spaced words like ‘star’ and ‘nebula’, and so on, down to the sub-atomic level, with everything its own label.

Screen captures from ‘The Child’

Screens from the Areva advert, the Royksopp video, and this rather good public information film by Japan’s Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food.

Talking of labels becoming the object itself, there was a short film, I think on the Sci-Fi channel, about a post-apocalyptic future where the apparently normal, happy, consumerist lifestyle everyone leads is in fact an illusion. There are many layers of unpleasant illusions underneath the ‘nice’ one to stop people trying to break free and see the real world. I particularly remember the ‘real world’ in the film as being made up of cardboard boxes labelled with the name of the object it was supposed to be, and a big barcode (the name set in Helvetica, natch), with one scene showing a load of cardboard boxes labelled as ‘Black Leather Briefcase’ going through some device (gotta love sci-fi) and emerging fully-clad in the illusion of black leather briefcases. I’m sure the film is nowhere near as good or as profound as I remember it, but does anyone know what it was?