As a 3D artist with an architectural background, my travels through various European cities have inspired me to create a library of photogrammetry 3D scans of unique architectural elements and sculptures. As my collection has grown, I’ve become captivated by the idea that these elements are, in themselves, narratives of their design and construction. Each architectural detail and sculpture on the facades of these historic buildings tells a story of its own. For example, on an old façade in Budapest, the history of the building is etched into its stonework. In Munich, a sculpted face above an entrance warmly greets visitors, while next door, two human figures in stone support the upper levels of another structure. These elements on the facades tell little stories, and it became increasingly apparent to me that they could be used to tell entirely new stories.
One of the 3D scans that sparked this idea was the scan of a muse resting beneath Johannes Brahms’ statue in Vienna. This muse served as the initial catalyst for my animation, drawing a connection to the classical epic, the Odyssey, by Homer. It marked a significant shift in my perspective. Until then, my 3D scans had primarily served as background elements for stories yet to be woven. However, in this animation, these architectural and sculptural details transform into the principal characters that convey the story to the audience.
Inspired by Homer’s Odyssey, this film calls upon the muse to sing us the tale of an ingenious hero who miraculously escaped the clutches of death on the battlefield, only to endure countless trials in the treacherous sea while striving to return to his beloved home. Unbeknownst to him, his devoted wife, Penelope, mourns his absence and embarks on her own battle of faith and patience by weaving the intricate tapestry of the great web, waiting for the day they reunite.
The narrative unfolds, centered around the two pivotal figures, Odysseus and Penelope, offering the audience the essential thread to connect with the epic tale. Alongside them, we encounter the muse, underworld, the embodiment of the tempestuous sea, and Ithaka. Though the latest are not traditional characters, these elements come to life as they narrate the story, their awakenings guiding us through the journey.
The muse opens the narrative with a divine aura, setting the stage for the unfolding epic. Odysseus, portrayed as a regal figure, and Penelope, beautifully adorned yet touched by the pallor of grief, capture the essence of their characters.
A pivotal moment occurs at the gates to the underworld, an imposing threshold guarded by two statues, reminiscent of Cerberus, their steadfast sentinels. This gate remains closed to our hero, only to be crossed by those who are destined to enter.
As the film nears its conclusion, the two central characters finally find themselves reunited in their cherished homeland of Ithaka. The symbolic double doors mark their triumphant return, etched with flourishing ‘Flowers,’ a poignant reminder that love and resilience can triumph over the most formidable challenges.
Directed by Yannis Efstathiou (Germany)