Joao Gonzalez

Film director and animator (Portugal), Royal College of Art

João Gonzalez is a Portuguese film director and animator based in Porto. He is the first Portuguese animation filmmaker to be awarded at Cannes International Film Festival; the first Portuguese filmmaker to receive an Academy Award nomination; and he has won awards at festivals including Melbourne International Film Festival, Chicago International Film Festival and Valladolid International Film Festival. On January 24, 2023, “Ice Merchants” became the first Portuguese production to ever receive an Academy Award nomination. his award winning animation about loss, love and family connection while he was a student at the Royal College of Art. He wrote, directed and animated the film, and composed and played piano for the soundtrack. 

As a graduate of the Royal College of Art in the United Kingdom, he has shown the UK’s soft power in enabling artists all the creative freedom that they need to develop their artistic voice.