Texas Tech University

APES 2019

Animation & Public Engagement Symposium 2019 
September 19-21,  Texas Tech University, Lubbock

APES is an annual forum for professionals (scholars and practitioners) concerned with advancing and promoting animation as therapeutic practice, educational technique, and as a tool for social engagement. The symposium identifies new terrains in the interface of animation with society and offers an alternative views of animation beyond artistic expression, entertainment or marketing tool.

Intrinsically interdisciplinary, APES encourages groundbreaking research on the intersection of animation arts and public engagement to identify new fields of inquiry and study vis-à-vis the connection of animation and the public sphere. APES brings together scholars and researchers from areas such as health/well-being; social impact and activism; therapeutic studies, including art and psychotherapies; and educational initiatives.

Keynote Speakers

  • Dr. Bella Honess Roe, Director of Film Studies (University of Surrey, U.K)
  • Dr. Dan Torre, Senior Lecturer School of Media and Communication (RMIT, Melbourne, Australia)

APES 2019 will take place on September 19th-21st at the Texas Tech University, Lubbock campus.

Since 2014 APES has been organized by two U.K. organizations and research groups associated with Loughborough University: Healing Education Animation Research Therapy (HEART) and the Animation Academy.

From now on, APES will be hosted in the USA and the U.K every other year.

APES has invited scholars and professionals from a variety of fields who identify with the cross-disciplinary nature of animation to propose papers, presentations, short film screenings, photographic essays, and interactive talks. APES encouraged submissions from disciplines outside of film and animation that show a cross-disciplinary nature and that propose alternative presentation styles.

Submissions were sought that respond to one or more of the following themes related to animation:

•Audiences   •Reception   •Activism   •Social Impact   •Cultural Practice   •Policy

•Cross-Platform Communication   •Health and Well-Being   •Social Institutions

•Art Therapy/Psychotherapy   •Education (as and for)   •Therapy       •Artifacts   

•Political Essay

Additional Events

  1. Mentoring workshop for graduate students: This will consist of 5-minute presentations where students will explain their dissertation or thesis topic, and the methodology and theoretical framework they will apply in their research. Indicate in the application e-mail if you want to be part of this activity
  2. Inclusival: The International Animation Festival for People with Disabilities will take place synchronously at Loughborough University and TTU at the time of the symposium. For more information about how to participate contact Melanie Hani (melanie.hani@homefieldcollege.ac.uk).


  • Deadline for abstracts: Extended to Monday, June 10, 2019
  • Selected participants will be notified by Saturday, June 15th.
  • Registration Online (coming soon). Fee :: $20 (US dollars)
  • The Symposium Opening Festivities and 1st Keynote Address: Thursday, September 19th beginning at 5:00 PM
  •  Dinner will be provided for all registered delegates on Thursday and Friday; refreshments and lunch will be provided on Friday and Saturday. 

Travel Grants: This is the second time the Society of Animation Studies (SAS) sponsors APES allowing the organizers to offer competitive travel grants to junior professionals, in the early stages in their careers, and graduate students. Information on how to apply is coming soon.

Travel suggestions: Continental, American Airlines, and Southwest Airlines are the major airlines which connect Lubbock to other places in the US via Dallas.

Lodging: The Staybridge Suites across the street from the Texas Tech campus has offered a special conference rate for attendees. Click [HERE] to go to the reservation page or click on this link: http://bit.ly/2019APES.

Endorsers and Sponsors

The symposium is endorsed by HEART U.K, the Animation Academy (U.K) and the School of Arts, Drama and English, Loughborough University.

At Texas Tech the symposium is presented with support from the J.T. & Margaret Talkington College of Visual and Performing Arts, the Texas Tech Office for Research and Innovation, the Ryla T. & John F. Lott Endowment for Excellence in the Arts through the School of Art, the Art History area in the Texas Tech School of Art, and the Society of Animation Studies (SAS).


  • USA: Jorgelina Orfila (Texas Tech University) & Francisco Ortega (Texas Tech University)
  • U.K: Roberta Bernabei (Loughborough University) & Melanie Hani (Homefield College, U.K)