Animation

The Department of  Animation was established at the Estonian Academy of Arts in 2006 and since 2007 it has offered a two-year MA in Animation (taught in English) curriculum. The main goal of the programme is to successfully educate creators of animated films, providing them with theoretical knowledge and practical skills. The further aim is to contribute to the global development of animation as an art form.

Animation is a thriving medium and developing at greater pace than ever before. It has become a part of mass culture as well as one of its principal forms. Animation can be seen in digital screen graphics, computer games, music videos, films, etc.

As our master students come from very different parts of the world and have different educational backgrounds we try to encourage their individual approach to filmmaking. The films vary from narrative to more experimental. Most of the works are executed in traditional 2D or stop motion techniques. Recently we have started to offer more thorough CGI courses as well. We invite several well-known animation artists to give workshops where they offer their inspiration and different approaches to animation.

Upon completion of the MA in Animation programme, students have acquired in-depth theoretical and practical animation skills. Students can specialise in specific animation techniques and create individual projects in the appropriate technique. After graduation, our students are qualified to realise themselves as animated film creators, professionals in creative industries or teachers in their field. Students who have completed the master’s programme are also qualified to continue their studies and pursue a doctoral degree.

The Department of Animation also offers a BA in Animation curriculum in Estonian language.


The classes were amazing. I learned how to tell stories, how to analyse films (not only animation), write scripts. I was fascinated by the teachers. They were professionals, not pedagogues. The programme made me an animation film director. My life has been tied to animation ever since. I also gained a huge circle of contacts, wonderful people I met during the course and after. I always tell people they should study animation in the Master’s programme at EKA if they want to be animation directors. Urte Oettinger MA Animation ‘10 Co-founder of WIRED FLY

News and events

Evridiki showing her tamagotchi inspire card validator.

MAAJAAM workshop

Weekend before last, MA students took a trip to MaaJaam in the south of Estonia for a workshop taught by Timo Toots. MaaJaam is a farm dedicated to art and technology, exploring the relationships between people, nature and tech.  The students were split into groups, and were tasked to create interactive art with technology, in connection with a decommissioned trolley bus that Timo had ...
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Films by Ülo Pikkov and Bruno Quast selected for Annecy Film Festival

This year, Estonia will be represented by two films at the world’s largest and most important animated film festival: Annecy International Animated Film Festival, in france. In the main competition will feature our department’s professor Ülo Pikkov’s film “Reunion” (Nukufilm 2022) which is made in a flat puppet technique of animation. In the student film competition will be the film “Cufufu” ...
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Book illustration workshop with Lucija Mrzljak

Last week students from both MA and BA classes partook in a book illustration workshop taught by Lucija Mrzljak. Lucija is a talented film director whos films are characterized by very strong style and visual character, which you also see in her illustrative work. The students created illustrated books under her guidence, all ranging in different stylistic techniques, genres, motives and ...
Student and Ülo Pikkov selecting which film cells to use for their animations.

Direct Animation Workshop with Ülo Pikkov

This week BA students have been partaking in a workshop to learn how to make direct animations, with professor Ülo Pikkov. Direct animation, also known as "drawn-on-film animation",  is an animation technique of scratching/ painting images onto film stock, treating each cell as a single frame of animation. In this workshop students are using old film cells from film archive. The combination ...
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EKA “Open Windows” 2022 Exhibition

The exhibition “Open Windows” will reopen on the windows of the Library of EKA on February 21, at 4 pm. Through the exhibition of EKA windows, different specialities of EKA introduce their most outstanding projects and the latest creations of students. The exhibition can be viewed on the windows of the EKA Library on Põhja pst and Kotzebue streets and will remain open until March 14. ...
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Stories from life. Interview with Ülo Pikkov, Head of the EKA Animation Department

Article from magazine “Estonian Film”. Text by Aurelia Aasa, photos by Viktor Koshkin. Ülo Pikkov, the newly appointed Head of the Animation Department at the Estonian Academy of Arts, started animating documentaries long before Flee took the genre to the limelight. Estonian Film spoke with Ülo about animation trends, distribution, and his newest film, ’Til We Meet Again, made entirely with ...
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Call for applications: EKA admissions now open!

From February 1 until March 1, 2022, Estonian Academy of Arts (EKA) is welcoming applications for its international Master’s programmes: Animation, an international MAprogramme with a main goal to successfully educate creators of animated films, providing them with theoretical knowledge and practical skills, at the same time encouraging students’ individual approach to filmmaking. ...
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Apply for the post of Professor of Animation!

PROFESSOR OF ANIMATION  Workload: Full-time (40 hours a week) Location of work: Tallinn Type of contract: permanent Start date: 22 August 2022 Application deadline: 7 March 2022 The Estonian Academy of Arts is Estonia’s only public university that provides higher education in architecture, design, art and art culture, and it has operated continuously since 1914. The Academy of Arts ...