Hermína TýrlováOccupation / Title:
12/11/1900Date of death:
Often called the mother of Czech animation, Hermína Týrlová was a pioneer in the long Czech tradition of puppet and stop-motion animation. She helped to found animation production at the major company Ziln Studios, laying further groundwork for future world-renowned Czech animators such as Jiří Trnka (sometimes called “the Walt Disney of Eastern Europe”). She created several children’s animations of her own, further establishing the practice and working with the rising animators of her time.
Týrlová started as an animator in the 1920s, by producing commercials and trick films. She later began to make animated shorts based on fairy tales, such as Ferda the Ant (1944), her directorial debut. She also produced an anti-Nazi short in 1945 called Revolt of the Toys, not released until 1947. During this time she was working as an assistant to Kavel Dodal, who was the first Czech animator to garner international attention for his animation work. She made further films in the years following, which were also based on Czech folk tales. These include Tale of a Dragon (1953), Micek Flicek’s Adventures (1956), and The Lost Doll (1959).
Týrlová founded the puppet film production department at Ziln (Gottwaldow) Studios. This act, as well as her work creating several stop-motion animations featuring puppets, would provide a strong foundation and overall link between the strong traditions of Czechoslovakian puppet theatre and the incredible stop-motion animation work which was to come (and of which she was a crucial part, herself). Her later films gained widespread popularity, including her first motion picture Lullaby (1946), about a toy that entertains a toddler in order to put her to sleep. She later made several films with J. Pinkavá using both live action and animation, such as The Interesting Letter (1961), The Knot in the Kerchief (1962), The Game (1963), and Boy or Girl (1966). Týrlová also later made a television movie, The Adventures of a Blue-Eyed Girl, in the 1970s. Throughout this time she also continued to produce short animated films for children, much like her earliest pieces.
Her work in animation garnered her the title of Honoured Artist of the Czechoslovak Socialist Republic. She received a State Prize in 1952.
Priebe, Ken A. The Art of Stop-Motion Animation. Cengage Learning: Thomson Course Technology: 2007.
The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Ed. (1970-1979). The Gale Group: 2010.