Dormitorium: The Brothers Quay

The Brothers Quay are among my favorite stop motion animators of all time. I recently had the good fortune to visit the Dormitorium exhibit at Parsons in NYC, where I got to see some props and film sets in person.


I was surprised to find the film set dioramas smaller than I expected. So much detailed crafting went into each one of them.


The next two were encased in opaque boxes with a wacky 3D viewing lens…they lose something in the photos.



The sets incorporate the most fantastic found objects. Bits and pieces of discarded wood, instruments, dolls and furniture come to life.

Here, Jesus wears a crown of horns, and has wire eyelashes.




Even the lighting was arranged wonderfully, to reflect the mood of the exhibit.

You can see the rest of my photos here.

The Brothers Quay are masters of dark, atmospheric surreal film making. Almost no dialogue is used, nor is it needed. The films rely heavily on classic (often avant garde) soundtracks to complement the scene.

And if you’d like a sample animation:

2 Responses to “Dormitorium: The Brothers Quay”

  1. I am so completely jealous!! Definitely among my favorites in animation.
    They would have had to kick me out at closing time.

  2. Ahh… I see you were able to actually view the exhibit with the lights on. When we walked (spur of the moment – we happened to be passing by on our way from a book signing with RO Blechman) it was 5 minutes to 8 (PM) and almost all the displays were shut down, the lights turned off. Kinda made the whole experience even more creepy.

    I loved the Quay’s in college and although I’ve kinda grown out of ’em I still greatly respect the amount of work and detail they put into their sets and puppets.

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