Know No Now

Digital Animation, 2023,  05:03 minutes

Know No Now is an animation of two puppets, Jelly Pop and Perky Jean, struggling to figure out how to live beyond the present moment of extraction-based capitalism and the resulting environmental destruction. Working through fear (of language, of the other, of time, and of the self), Jelly Pop and Perky Jean arrive at a mental space in which they imagine themselves outside of time, no longer ego driven, and having a long view of existence.
Know No Now was created in collaboration with Artificial Intelligence and is part of an ongoing project in which I am working with Artificial Intelligence to create absurd educational programming inspired by A.I.s’ (mis)understandings of children’s television shows, emphasizing how human-caused environmental collapse is communicated. For Know No Now I asked A.I. to create two ideal puppets for explaining climate change, one more free-spirited, the other more worried, resulting in Jelly Pop and Perky Jean. I then modeled and animated them with 3D software. For the script, I prompted another A.I. to help write the “songs” and situations, including two puppets being confused by the similar sounding and looking words “know,” “no,” and “now.” Finally, additional animations were created that transform between images in order to make the interstitial scenes, which move the puppets from positions of terror about the unknown future into an acceptance of the long now.

Know No Know has been shown at the TSI/Harland Snodgrass Gallery, Alfred University; LINOLEUM Animation and Media Art  Festival, Kyiv, Ukraine; Chroma Art Film Festival, Miami, FL; and the  2023 West Virginia Mountaineer Short Film Festival, West Virginia University, West Virginia.

It won “Best Animation at the Chroma Art Film Festival.

© 2023 Karl Erickson