Skip to main content


Associate Dean, Planning and Academic Facilities

Ana Cappelluto

Cilia Sawadogo
Interim Associate Dean
Planning and Academic Facilities
Tel: 514-848-2424 ext. 4703
Location: EV 2.739

The office of the Associate Dean, Planning and Academic Facilities coordinates all aspects of the facilities planning and management of the Faculty’s space, and assists with the coordination of space and building plans, implementation of space changes and departmental moves. This office works in cooperation with the Faculty's academic departments and units, and with Facilities Management and the office of the Vice-Provost.

After working as a director at the National Film Board (NFB) of Canada for seven years, Cilia Sawadogo joined the Film Animation Program at the Mel Hoppenheim School of Cinema in 1999.

Over the years, she has taught at all levels, focusing mainly on core classes in Animated Filmmaking, script and storyboarding, while integrating techniques such as 2D drawn and 3D digital animation, as well as under-camera direct animation techniques like sand, clay and paint into the curriculum.

Her research has produced seven animated films of multiple aesthetics and techniques addressing subjects ranging from Children films of African storytelling, feminism and immigration. Supported by funding from SODEC, Canada Council of the Arts and Conseil des Arts du Quebec, her animation films were shown nationally and internationally in hundreds of festivals. Furthermore, she has guest lectured in several Universities such as the Washington University in Saint- Louis, USA, and the Kwazulu Nepal University in Durban, South Africa. She also designed and gave workshops for numerous film festivals and institutions like UNESCO Kenya and Le Centre Culture Français of Accra, Ghana.

Cilia Sawadogo’s many years of animation works in 3D and 2D digital animation gives her a unique position from which to view the digital turn as she explores under-camera and object animation using analogue materials to craft animation films and interdisciplinary animated installation.

Thematically, Sawadogo’s work examined the conditions of women in changing West African cultures and is now focusing on how mixed-race and diasporic identity transforms after several generations of migration in Canada.

Conceptually and technically, she questions the purely digital animation process as the computer disconnects the image from the artist’s body. Working with plasticine, clay, paint and sand in the straight-ahead animation process requires the animator to physically destroy and renew the created artworks or replenish materials constantly to maintain consistent movement and physical contact within the frame-by-frame process. Thus, the artist’s body is always in closer proximity to the movement in the artwork when using such materials. Now that the transition to the digital has become complete, Sawadogo reflects on the function of materiality and physicality within the digital world. Connecting her thematics to her material processes in fascinating ways, her research questions include: How does intergenerational and cultural knowledge come through the diasporic experience? How can materiality and the cyclical ground explorations of human connection to nature, the earth and humanity of African descent? And, what does physical contact with the medium do to the artwork that differs from noncontact mediums?  Furthermore, after carefully storyboarding and planning out many animation projects in the past, Sawadogo now performs a reflexive examination of how spontaneity and intuition work with or against artistic planning as her new choice of materials demands more flexibility and connection to the creative moment.

Back to top Back to top

© Concordia University