Gerben Schermer (NL) started the international Holland Animation Film Festival together with animation filmmaker Gerrit van Dijk in 1985. The festival takes place every spring, over a period of five days at several locations in the city of Utrecht, the Netherlands.
HAFF is known for its idiosyncratic approach and its choice for quality and innovation. Its programming is ambitious, yet intimate and accessible. HAFF organises international competitions for shorts, features, student films, web animations and shorts for children (8+) and a competition for Dutch animation. The festival highlights the latest developments and new talent, shows animation installations, theme programmes and retrospectives, and organizes activities like talk shows, master classes and lectures.
Gerben Schermer composed guest programmes for numerous festivals around the world and has been involved in film production as well. In 2010 for instance he produced the animation film Clown’s Revolution by the active young Chinese visual artist Sun Xun who worked in 2010 for a few months in Utrecht as artist-in-residence of the HAFF. Nowadays, under the heading Expanding Animation, animation installations are an important part of the programme of the Holland Animation Film Festival. These ingenious applications of animation involve new narrative practices and new ways of experiencing moving images.