Our chapter was founded in 1990 by Joanna Priestley and Marilyn Zornado. Under its original name, ASIFA Northwest, the group encompassed both Portland and Seattle; later, it split in two to better serve each city. In 2007, ASIFA Portland incorporated as a non-profit under Oregon law. Now over 25 years old, the organization continues into a new era of of digital filmmaking and internet-based society, maintained by an ever-evolving volunteer board of directors.
You can learn more by going to our website at http://www.asifaportland.org
2018 has been a busy year full of ups and downs for the Portland animation community, and ASIFA Portland.
A major highlight this year occured on March 10th when the local animator, Paul Harrod gave a presentation about his work as Production Designer for Wes Anderson’s recent film, Isle of Dogs. This year we hosted several events including screenings of select films from the Glas Animation Festival and Ottawa International Animation Festival. Other events included a film screening of Pre-Hays Code animations, a Fighting Figure Drawing event at Portland Thai Boxing, the annual Ice Cream Summer Social, and our Winter Meet and Greet.
Over the course of eight years the NW Animation Festival grew from the small venue of 5th Avenue Cinema in 2011, all the way to the mains screen of the Hollywood Theater in 2018. Along the way we’ve been treated to many hundreds of hours of world-class animation of all types. September saw the final screening of this monumental achievement by former ASIFA Portland President, Sven Bonnichsen. We have been proud to support the festival from its inception to its final after party and will cross our fingers for an eventual reincarnation.
Sadly, 2018 also marked the passing of one of the most well-known and influential animation pioneers in Portland: Will Vinton. Will Vinton revolutionized stop-motion animation, started the careers of numerous local animators, including Paul Harrod, and made Portland a global hotspot for animation. His contribution to Portland's animation industry and the great loss felt by the local animation community cannot be overstated. It was through his support and the work of his veteran animators, Marilyn Zornado and Joanna Priestly, that ASIFA Portland came into being. He will be dearly missed.