A life-long artist, Kate Brown discovered a love for animation while attending Evergreen State College. After graduating, she founded Fundamentalist Flowerchild Productions, and began to create animated pieces. On Craigslist, Brown found an Oxberry Animation Stand, a 12-foot tall iron antique used for image capture, free for the taking. Although most animation is now digital, the experimental effects produced on an Oxberry remain desirable (oxberryproject.com).
For several years, the Oxberry occupied a corner of Brown’s studio in the Mimbres Valley. In 2012, Anthony Hyde, director of the Manufacturing Technology & Engineering Center at New Mexico State University (NMSU), took a tile-making class from Brown and was intrigued with the machine. Brown explained that she wanted to refurbish the Oxberry to bring back the days of handmade, under-the-camera animation. Hyde pointed her to NMSBA, which paired her with Griselda Martinez of the Arrowhead Center at NMSU.
Martinez assembled an engineering team which updated the Oxberry’s electronics,while retaining its unique features and production capabilities. Brown continues to explore the Oxberry’s seemingly limitless possibilities while making the equipment available through workshops, classes and residencies to professional and college animators. She is also working with filmmakers in Albuquerque and Tucson to
animate their film projects. Brown is pleased that she is attracting filmmakers and artists who are learning more about the art-rich Mimbres Valley while they study the Oxberry film production technique at her studio. To date, Brown has generated $45,000 in contracts through use of her refurbished Oxberry.