Monthly Archives: May 2010

Chuck Jones: An Animator’s Life from A to Z-Z-Z-Z Gala Opening Night Reception

Last night, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in Beverly Hills opened the exhibit, "Chuck Jones: An Animator's Life From A to Z-Z-Z-Z" with a gala reception, welcoming over 250 well-wishers along with the late animation director and creator's family.  

The exhibition was curated by Ellen Harrington, the Academy's Director of Exhibitions and Special Events, and was culled from the archives of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and the Chuck Jones Collection of the Warner Bros. Museum.  It includes layout drawings by Jones, along with storyboards, backgrounds, pre-production concept art & other related ephemera from Jones' seven decade career.  It is the first (and largest) exhibition of the art of the animated film ever assembled solely devoted to the work of one man.  

On hand to welcome the opening night crowd were Jones' daughter, Linda Jones Clough (pictured 4th from left below) along with her children and their spouses, grandchild and Jones' widow, Marian Jones (4th from right.)

Jones clan at opening russo photog
From left: Krista Kausen, Todd Kausen (Jones' grandson,) Jim Clough, Linda Jones Clough (Jones' daughter,) Jessica Kausen (great-granddaughter,) Marian Jones (wife,) Valerie Kausen (granddaughter,) Kimberley Kausen, Craig Kausen (Jones' grandson.)  Photo by Stephen Russo.

Marian oscar photogs

Marian Jones places Chuck Jones' Oscar® for his 1965 short animated film, "The Dot and The Line" on its pedestal for the opening of the exhibition.

Todd craig valerie oscar marian linda jessica 

Oscar® takes his place of honor during the opening ceremonies surrounded by Jones' family, from left: Todd, Craig, Valerie Kausen with Marian Jones (3rd from right,) Linda Jones Clough and Jessica Kausen.  

Tracy john and friends 

Tracy Tanner, President of the Chuck Jones Council for Creativity (far left) with her husband John (2nd from right) and friends.

Julie hudash craig kimberley friend 

Craig Kausen (2nd from right) Chairman of the Board of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity takes a moment to pose here with (from left) Laura Baden, member of the Board of Directors for Team Kids, Julie Hudash, CEO and Founder of Team Kids and Kimberley Kausen, far right, Craig's wife. 

Valerie rick ball steve fossatti 

Valerie Kausen, co-producer of the bio-doc "The Magical World of Chuck Jones" and Jones' granddaughter, takes a moment to speak with author Rick Ball and Stephen Fossati, animated film producer, director and writer.

Marian kimberley

Marian Jones (l) with Kimberley Kausen (and Linda Jones Clough, left background.)

Cheryl robert tracy 

Cheryl Posner (l) Executive Director of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity pauses during the festivities to speak with Robert Patrick and Tracy Tanner, President of Chuck Jones Council for Creativity, the outreach arm of the non-profit Center.  

Lorie darrell susan 

Smiles all around!  Fans of Chuck Jones, from left, Hannelore Palcsik, Darrell Park and Susan Palcsik enjoy the exhibition.

John leigh yetsko 

Leigh (r) and John Yetsko revel in all things Chuck Jones.

Jessica and valerie 

Jessica Kausen, great-granddaughter of Chuck Jones and Valerie Kausen, great, granddaughter of Chuck Jones share the joy of the evening. 

Image of the Day: One Froggy Evening

ONFR-01-005 copy

Original production background, layout by Robert Gribbroek, backgrounds painted by Philip DeGuard, from the Chuck Jones directed 1955 short animated film, “One Froggy Evening.”  One of three short films by Jones inducted into the National Film Registry of the Smithosonian (the other two are “What’s Opera, Doc?” and “Duck Amuck”) it bowed in theaters on December 31, 1955 (what a New Year’s Eve surprise!)

Opening tonight with a gala reception, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences presents “Chuck Jones: An Animator’s Life From A to Z-Z-Z-Z.”  The exhibit closes August 22, 2010.  For more information, visit the Oscars!

“Chuck Amuck: A Legacy of Laughter”: Local Artist Pays a Visit!

Local Tempe artist, Craig Cheply (right) and his 96 year-old father-in-law, Harry Van Kirk, paid a visit to the "Chuck Amuck: A Legacy of Laughter" at the Tempe Center for the Arts this past week.  Both Cheply and Van Kirk found the exhibit entertaining and enlightening; bringing back many fond memories for them both.  

Craig Cheply and 93 year old stepfather 

The exhibition will close June 18th, so make sure you mark your calendars and make time to visit beautiful Tempe, Arizona and take in the three concurrent Chuck Jones exhibitions before they close!

Chuck Amuck, A Legacy of Laughter:  Tempe Center for the Arts

Chuck Jones, Black and White and Read All Over:  Tempe Public Library

Chuck Jones, An Animated Life:  Phoenix Airport Museum (Extended by popular demand through August 2010!)

To find out more about the exhibits and Tempe, please click here.

Update!  May 19, 2010:

Mr. Cheply sent us a photo of one of his paintings that we thought we'd share with our readers.  Cheply has also exhibited at the Tempe Center for the Arts.  This painting is titled, "X Marks the Spot."  You can learn more about the artist by visiting his website,


Chuck Jones: An Animator’s Life from A to Z-Z-Z-Z Opens Friday, May 14th

"Chuck Jones: An Animator's Life from A to Z-Z-Z-Z opens Friday, May 14th at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences in the Grand Lobby Gallery at 8949 Wilshire Blvd., Beverly Hills, California.  Running concurrently with three exhibitions in Tempe and Phoenix, Arizona (including an extension of the exhibit at Phoenix Airport Museum through August) the exhibit at the Academy was curated by Ellen Harrington, Director of Exhibitions and Special Events.  Researching the archives of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, Harrington selected over 150 works of animation art, photographs, sketchbooks and storyboards that detail the nearly seven decade career of Chuck Jones. 

Not only will work from Jones' Academy Award® -winning and nominated films be on display, but also from such delightful cartoons as "Bear for Punishment" (1951), "Deduce You Say" (1956) and "Little Lion Hunter" (1939.)  The full range of the exhibition will help the viewer understand Jones' process of creating an animated film, from story to completed film.  To read more about the exhibition, visit the Academy's website by clicking here.

Chuck Jones comes home to the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences

This Friday, May 14, a major exhibition of Chuck Jones' art opens at the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences in Beverly Hills, CA.  Chuck Jones:  An Animator's Life from A to Z-Z-Z-Z features over 150 sketches, animation cels, storyboards, and other rarities drawn from the Oscar-winning animation director's six decades of work in film.

Named after Jones' classic 1954 animation short, From A to Z-Z-Z-Z, the exhibition features original pieces borrowed from the collections of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, the nonprofit organization founded by Jones himself, and Warner Bros., where he created the iconic and beloved characters that spring to life in this new exhibition.

Don't miss this chance to be inspired by the witty, humorous, and irreverent Chuck Jones, a uniquely American genius who has kept generations around the world doubled over in laughter!

Chuck Jones:  An Animator's Life from A to Z-Z-Z-Z is open to the public, free of charge, in the Academy's Grand Lobby Gallery from May 14 through August 22.


Image of the Day: Barbary Coast Bunny

BACO-01-001 copy

Original layout drawing by Chuck Jones (graphite on 12 field animation paper) from his 1956 short animated film, "Barbary Coast Bunny" starring Bugs Bunny and Nasty Canasta. 

Animation director and creator of "Ren and Stimpy," John Kricfalusi has written a wonderful analysis of Jones' "Barbary Coast Bunny" which we recommend.  It begins:

"This is one of my all-time favorite cartoons. It has almost every good
trait you associate with Chuck Jones:

Great layouts and
Funny and mean gags
Specific acting
Beautiful solid
and stylish drawings
Good timing
Clear Staging
A lummox

also has very tight story structure and lots of little subtle extra
actions – all the things the critics love. I appreciate those too, but
those are nice secondary accessories to me. They can help support a big
central idea if there is one. By themselves they are just technical
details. What's really memorable about this cartoon is the
characterization of the lummox. Chuck is the master of lummoxes and this
Nasty Canasta is his finest. Usually Chuck's lummoxes have funny body
shapes-a huge barrel chest, big head with tiny legs and stubby fingers.
Nasty has all these traits, but on top of them he has a very specific
face – unlike the more plain faced Little John and The Crusher."

To read the rest of John K.'s blog post, please click here

This inspired me today: Of Compost, Molecules and Insects, Art Is Born

There is a terrific article in today's New York Times about the melding of art and science and the resulting artwork that comes from this unique pairing.  Inspiration comes in many guises and we must be open to its call. 

Cauda Equina
Keith W. Bentley’s “Cauda Equina” (1995-2007).

The word organic means different things to different people. To the gardener
it means compost
heaps. To the chemist it means carbon compounds. To the artist Fabian Peña, it
means American cockroaches, those chunky nocturnal charmers often seen
skittering around drainpipes or on the street. “I have collected cockroaches
from many different places,” Mr. Peña said. “From Cuba, Mexico, Miami, Houston,
everywhere I travel.” Read the rest of the article.

May the Fourth Be With You!

YODA.lo res

"Yoda" original limited edition fine art reproduction by Lawrence Noble, printed for Celebration — Europe in 2007.  This hand-signed edition of 200 was created from an original drawing by Noble, whose sculptures grace the grounds and offices of Lucasfilm's headquarters in San Francisco.  Call for pricing and availability (888-294-9880 or email: 

Yoda fountain sm
"Yoda Fountain" sculpted by Lawrence Noble, Lucasfilm headquarters, San Francisco. 

Chuck Jones Center in Orange Sports New Signage!


Coming or going, you won't be able to miss the re-vitalized headquarters of Chuck Jones Center for Creativity at 131 W. Chapman in Orange, California.  The front windows are sporting new signage that jumps out at passers-by proclaiming "We Are Here! We Are Here!" (With a nod to Chuck's 1970 television special, "Horton Hears a Who!")  Our temporary hours are Thursday & Friday, 10 AM to 6 PM and Saturday's 9 AM to 5 PM.  Visit Orange & make a point of stopping by to say hello and find out what's happening.