See the best animated short films from around the world at the Art Theatre, Sunday

This is a curated show with selections of the best animated short films created by students and professionals from around the world. That translates into 10 films from seven countries.

It’s funny how animation has so rapidly grown from Saturday morning fodder to an art form that is arguably the most imaginative  and thought-provoking in filmmaking today.

Here are some brief descriptions of the featured films, courtesy of event organizers:

Personal relationships are at the heart of several of the films in this year’s program, including Daria Kashcheeva’s International Student Academy Award-winning puppet animation “Daughter,” a deeply moving exploration of the ties between a father and daughter.

“The Fox and the Bird” by Sam & Fred Guillaume, is a beautifully observed fable about an unlikely friendship between the two eponymous characters.

Filmmaker Michael Frei and game designer Mario von Rickenbach provide a more clinical view of human behavior in their mesmerizing “KIDS,” which explores the nature of group dynamics.

The question of individual identity informs both “Hounds” by Amit Cohen and Ido Shapira and “(Self-Narrative)” by Géraldine Charpentier. In the former, a highly domesticated dog undergoes a disturbing change when a pack of wild hounds gathers near his house, while the latter offers a clear-eyed and heartfelt look at a young girl’s journey to self-realization as a transgender person.

Joanna Lurie’s mysterious and transcendent “Flowing Through Wonder” chronicles an extraordinary ritual and celebrates the transformative mystery that underlies life and death.

Natalia Mirzoyan’s Five Minutes to Sea in which a young girl waits impatiently to go back in the sea, takes a more lighthearted approach while playing with conundrums of time and perspective.

The program is rounded out by Gil Alkabetz’s “Rubicon,” a frenetic and very funny hand-drawn animation based on the classic riddle about how to ferry a wolf, a sheep, and a cabbage across a river without something getting eaten.

The 21st Annual Animation Show of Shows runs Friday, Feb. 21 to Sunday, Feb. 23, at the Art Theatre, located at 2025 E. Fourth St. Showtimes are 1 p.m. on Friday and Saturday and 3 p.m. on Sunday. For more information or to buy tickets, click here.

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Steve Lowery began his journalism career at the Los Angeles Times, where he planned to spend his entire career. God, as usual, laughed at his plans and he has since written for the short-lived sports publication The National, the L.A. Daily News, the Press-Telegram, New Times LA, the District and the OC Weekly. He is the Arts & Culture Editor for the Post, overseeing the Hi-lo.