Monthly Archives: February 2013

Tickets Now on Sale for the Grand Opening of “Chuck Jones: Drawing on Imagination” Exhibition at the Cartoon Art Museum — San Francisco

Chuck Jones: Drawing on Imagination
Opening Reception
Saturday, March 23, 2013 from 6pm to 9pm

The Cartoon Art Museum and Chuck Jones Center for Creativity will host a special reception for the exhibition, Chuck Jones: Drawing on Imagination on Saturday, March 23, 2013.  Special guests include Chuck Jones’ widow, Marian Jones, his daughter,Linda Jones Clough and grandson, Craig Kausen, who is the Chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, as well as other guests from the family and the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity.  Proceeds from the event will benefit the Cartoon Art Museum and Chuck Jones Center for Creativity.

Tickets are $50 for the VIP portion, $10 for the reception and can be purchased through:

Additional level tickets offer discount memberships to the Cartoon Art Museum and charter membership to the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity.  Please visit the ticket page for details.

From 6pm to 7pm, the VIP portion will include an exclusive Docent Tour of the exhibit by Linda Jones Clough and Craig Kausen. Exclusive items will be available for auction, including tribute pieces from artists at Pixar Animation Studios and an original Chuck Jones piece.  Refreshments courtesy of Square MealsShmaltz Brewery and Garden Creamery.

From 7pm to 9pm regular ticket buyers can enjoy refreshments, mix and mingle with our special guests and participate in the auction. Exclusive items will be available for auction, including tribute pieces from artists at Pixar Animation Studios and an original Chuck Jones piece. The auction will close for live bidding at 8pm.

About the Exhibition:  February 9 – May 5, 2013 
The Cartoon Art Museum presents a centennial retrospective of the art of legendary animation director and creator Chuck Jones, on display from February 9 through May 5, 2013.  The exhibition, comprising 100 works of art from the late 1930s through the late 1990s, is entitled Chuck Jones: Drawing on Imagination100 Years of an Animated Artist. Artwork for the exhibit is provided by the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity in Costa Mesa, CA.

Chuck Jones, a graduate of the Chouinard Art Institute (now CalArts in Valencia), drew $1.00 portraits on Olvera Street in downtown Los Angeles before he began his career in animation as a cel washer at Ubbe Iwerks Studio in 1932. He directed his first cartoon, “The Night Watchman,” for Leon Schlesinger Productions in 1938 and went to helm such classic Warner Brothers shorts as "What's Opera, Doc?" and "One Froggy Evening."  Winner of three animation Oscars and an honorary Lifetime Achievement Oscar for "the creation of classic cartoons and cartoon characters," Jones is today considered synonymous with the "Golden Age" of studio animation and has inspired many of today’s most significant film directors, artists, and animators.  

“I have been a fan of the Cartoon Art Museum for many years and to finally have such an extensive exhibition presented here is like a dream come true.  My grandfather loved San Francisco and its denizens. This exhibition, with many never-before-exhibited works, is a masterpiece to celebrate Chuck’s Centennial Celebration,” said Craig Kausen, Chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and Chuck’s grandson.

“We’re thrilled with the opportunity to partner with the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, and to bring our patrons 100 pieces of classic and rarely seen artwork from one of the greatest and most influential cartoonists in American history,” said Cartoon Art Museum curator Andrew Farago.  “Chuck received the Cartoon Art Museum’s Sparky Award for lifetime achievement in 1998, and I’m grateful for the opportunity to further celebrate his extraordinary career and talent.”   

About The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity

The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity is a non-profit 501(c)3 charity located in Costa Mesa, California. Founded in 1999 by four-time Academy Award recipient and legendary animation creator, Chuck Jones, the Center’s vision is to inspire the innate creative genius within each person that leads to a more joyous, passionate, and harmonious life and world.

The Center is dedicated to re-invigorating the creative spirit and they are doing it through art classes, exhibitions, lectures, and film festivals, all of which spring from the material in the Chuck Jones archive. Jones was a determined saver and his writings, art, and other ephemera from a nine-decade life along with his philosophy of guiding and nurturing instruction form the basis of their programs.

About the Cartoon Art Museum

Founded in 1984, the Cartoon Art Museum is the only museum in the western United States dedicated to cartoons and comics.  The museum was started by a group of cartoonists and collectors who wanted to share their appreciation of this unique art form with the rest of the world.  The museum is dedicated to the collection, preservation, study and exhibition of original cartoon art in all forms to benefit historians, cartoonists, journalists, artists, collectors and the general public.


Cartoon Art Museum * 655 Mission Street – San Francisco, CA 94105 – 415-CAR-TOON - <>  
Hours:  Tues.  Sun. 11:00 – 5:00, Closed Monday
General Admission: $7.00 – Student/Senior:$5.00 – Children 6-12:$3.00 – Members & Children under 6: Free

The Cartoon Art Museum is a tax-exempt, non-profit, educational organization dedicated to the collection, preservation, 
study and exhibition of original cartoon art in all forms. 

Volker Kühn “Objects” at the Chuck Jones Gallery–Costa Mesa

The Chuck Jones Gallery, located in the vibrant new retail center SoCo (South Coast Collection) at Hyland and Sunflower in Costa Mesa, California is pleased to announce the opening of "Objects" an exhibition of the mixed media constructions by German artist, Volker Kühn. The exhibit runs through March 15, 2013. 

Volker kuhn exhibit
Volker Kühn "Objects" at the Chuck Jones Gallery, Costa Mesa, California. 3321 Hyland Avenue, just north of the 405 at the Harbor Blvd. exit.

Kühn, born in 1948, studied at the Bremen Academy of Arts where he studied sculpture. His first commission was a mirrored "objects" installation at the Bremen Nautical Academy in 1974. His work has been exhibited in galleries and museums around the world.

"The Garden of Paul Klee" by Volker Kühn. Outside dimensions 23.75" x 20", image size 8.5" x 7.5", mixed media construction.

Visiting Kühn's studio you would immediately notice his carefully sorted drawers that reach wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling, each drawer labeled with "elephants", "dromedaries", "spirit levels", "feathers", "women–large", "cowboys", "toothpicks", or "teddys (as in teddy bears) for instance. He never knows where his peregrinations will lead him. However, his work table is less orderly and is often looked upon as "productive chaos."

"Enchanted Forest" mixed media construction by Volker Kühn. Outside dimensions 11.5" x 10.25", image size 4.75" x 3.75". 

makes compelling statements about the human predicament that are strangely free
of irony and didacticism. His surrealistic freeze-frames could be described as
“visual puns” which intrigue the viewer and reward them with the joy of solving
a riddle.

"The Team" mixed media construction by Volker Kuhn. Outside dimensions 20" x 19", inside dimensions 6" x 5.75". 

His wife, Edda, best explains the appeal of his work, ''The nature of art is to draw the observer out
of a state of reserve. Volker Kühn's “Objects” are an example of how this
works. The spontaneous reaction – mostly a smile – is transformed into
contemplation. The smile returns again later, sometimes broadening into a grin,
provoking the question: How is it possible for a person to invent such
grotesque situations? In doing so, he exploits the materials to their utmost potential.  Is there something pedantic in his make-up?
Oh yes, and chaotic to boot! His very nature is contradictory. In his hands nonsense suddenly makes

"Welcome Baby" mixed media construction by Volker Kühn. Outside dimensions 15.75" x 17", inside dimensions 3.5" x 6.25".  

For more information regarding the work of Volker Kühn , stop the Chuck Jones Gallery in Costa Mesa at 3321 Hyland Avenue. Contact your Chuck Jones Gallery art consultant for a private online viewing of the collection. 

Costa Mesa — 866-ChuckJones or email; San Diego — 888-294-9880 or email; Santa Fe, NM — 800-290-5999 or email 

"Movie Stars" mixed media construction by Volker Kühn. Outside dimensions 20.25" x 20.75", image size 8.25 x 6.25. 

Chuck Jones Centennial Film Tribute at Cinefamily

This past weekend, Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre in West Hollywood, California hosted a two-day film tribute to Chuck Jones. Hosted by animation film historian and author, Jerry Beck, on Saturday, they screened eight of Chuck's masterpieces from his days at Warner Bros. including such classics as "What's Opera, Doc?" and "One Froggy Evening" both of which are in the Library of Congress's National Film Registry. The late afternoon event wrapped with a rare screening of Chuck Jones's 1973 TV special, "A Cricket in Times Square." The Chuck Jones Center for Creativity provided Cinefamily with Chuck's personal 35mm prints of the cartoons. 

Jerry Beck (L) and Alexander McDonald, program director for Cinefamily, outside the Silent Movie Theatre.

Jerry's special guest on Saturday was animator, art director, and theme park designer, John Ramirez, who had worked with Chuck Jones in the 1980s and 1990s. He and his colleagues were the designers of the Chuck Jones exhibition at the Capitol Children's Museum, Washington, D.C. in 1990. 

Jerry Beck (L) and John Ramirez discuss the finer points of a Chuck Jones cartoon at the Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre in West Hollywood.

There was even cake! (Who doesn't like a good carrot cake, I ask you?)


On Sunday, Craig Kausen, chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and Chuck's grandson, made opening remarks before a screening of Jones's only feature film, "The Phantom Tollbooth." Special guest, actor Butch Patrick, who starred as Milo in "The Phantom Tollbooth" made an appearance and spoke with the near-capacity crowd. All-in-all it was a great weekend for Chuck Jones fans!

Animator and fan, Thom Nicolette (L) with actor Butch Patrick ("The Munsters", "The Phantom Tollbooth") at the Cinefamily Chuck Jones Film Tribute. 

Craig Kausen (L) and Butch Patrick at the Cinefamily at the Silent Movie Theatre in West Hollywood.

Craig Kausen (R) brought a portfolio of material from the making of "The Phantom Tollbooth" to share with the crowd of fans. He's seen here with Alexander McDonald (far left) of Cinefamily and Jerry Beck (center), author, animation historian and host/moderator for the weekend film tribute to Chuck Jones.

Photographer Stephen Russo (R) seen with Butch Patrick outside the Silent Movie Theatre. Mr. Russo provided all of the photos for this post. Thank you, Stephen!

Call for Artists to Participate in the 3rd Annual Red Dot Auction

Dear Artists and Friends of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity, 

Preparations are underway for the Third Annual Red Dot Auction benefiting the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity scheduled for May 11, 2013. As you are aware, creativity in our schools and in our national conversation is always the first thing to be eliminated or casually dismissed as unimportant. In fact, it is creativity that opens the minds and hearts of all who allow it to, it brings greater freedom to their lives. It enhances one's ability to solve problems and it opens minds to the differences that make each of us unique, erasing prejudices and bigotry. Creativity makes the world a better place. 

Artist Jimmy Mulligan with Linda Jones Clough, daughter of Chuck Jones, at the 2012 Red Dot Auction.  

Today I’m writing to ask you to donate a work of art to this year’s Red Dot Auction, to be held on Saturday, May 11th from 6 to 9 PM at the Center in Costa Mesa, California.  Again this year the canvas is 12” square and as last year, we ask that you sign the artwork on the reverse.  You may prefer to work on paper or another substrate and that’s fine as long as we can mount it to the 12” square canvas for presentation the night of the event. 

For those of you who may be unaware of the Red Dot Auction and how it works (or may have forgotten), here are the details: each artist contributes a work of art that is either painted on the canvas we provide you or creates a work of art that can be mounted to the canvas for display the evening of the auction.  The artwork should be signed on the reverse so that bidders at this silent auction will not know who has created which painting—although savvy collectors may be aware of your particular style and will jealously guard their bids, hoping to land a work by ______ or ____ ______.  

From left: Craig Kausen, Chairman of the Chuck Jones Center for Creativity and grandson of Chuck Jones, his wife, Kimberley, and Jamie Dicken at the 2012 Red Dot Auction.  

We are still in the midst of the Chuck Jones Centennial year and we'd like to carry over the suggested theme from last year from which to draw your inspiration: the life and times of Chuck Jones. That should not limit you to cartoon-related imagery, although many of the most sought after works at last year’s event were inspired by his Looney Tunes creations; you might be inspired by his love of travel, his admiration for the work of Mark Twain or the fact that he never had one cavity his entire life (true!) 

Mike Dicken, National Sales Director for the Chuck Jones Gallery, places a bid on a work of art at the 2012 Red Dot Auction.

Whatever you choose to do, of course, is up to you; it is your participation that is most important to us. 

Won't you share your gifts with us and with the Center's members and patrons?  If you will, please drop me a note with your mailing address and I’ll get a canvas out to you.  What’s that you say?  You’d like to contribute two works?  No problem!  Just let me know and I’ll send you two canvases.  Have an artist friend who would like to be a part of this exciting project?  Please send them my way.  Canvases are due back here no later than April 19th. Write to me at 

Thank you in advance for your generosity, time, and commitment to re-invigorating the creative spirit in all of us.  

All the best, Robert 

Leigh and John Yetsko were the successful bidders for the portrait of Wile E. Coyote as Chuck Jones by one of the "Dover Boys" and producer of "Dora the Explorer", Jeff DeGrandis at the 2012 Red Dot Auction. All photos by Stephen Russo.

Cartoonist Lynda Barry to Teach University-Level Course on Doodling and Neuroscience

From the January 26 issue of the website "Open Culture" comes this report about cartoonist Lynda Barry and her new course on doodling and neuroscience:

Cartoonist Lynda Barry, who has helped legions of adults grope their way back to the unselfconscious creativity of childhood, is teaching at the university level. Barry’s Unthinkable Mind course is designed to appeal to students of the humanities.  Also hardcore science majors, the sort of lab-coated specimens the first group might refer to as “brains.” The instructor describes her University of Wisconsin spring semester offering thus:

A writing and picture-making class with focus on the basic physical structure of the brain with emphasis on hemispheric differences and a particular sort of insight and creative concentration that seems to come about when we are using our hands (the original digital devices) —to help us figure out a problem.

The twenty-one grads and undergrads accepted into Professor Barry’s course have been warned, via the illustrated letter above,  handwritten on legal paper, that the workload will be heavy.


You should be warned as well, if you elect to audit this course from home. Enrollment is not necessary. Professor Barry will be posting her weekly assignments and curriculum materials on her tumblr, a forum where her abiding interest in science is as apparent as her devotion to undirected doodling. Your first assignment, posted above, requires a box of crayons, the coloring pages of your choice, downloaded to four types of paper, and a significant chunk of time set aside for brain-related articles and vintage videos starring Cognitive Neuroscientist Michael Gazzaniga and astronomer Carl Sagan. You should also be committed to keeping a four-minute diary and serving as your own guinea pig.

Who’s in?

A big H/T @kirstinbutler



New York Public Library Opens Exhibit of Dr. Seuss Hats–Coming to Chuck Jones Gallery, San Diego

In honor of the 75th anniversary of Dr. Seuss's "The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins," the New York Public Library will open an exhibit today of about a dozen of Dr. Seuss's hats. Seuss, whose real name was Theodor Geisel, collected over 500 hats during his lifetime. The exhibit will travel to 15 other locations this year, including the Chuck Jones Gallery in San Diego, California, August 9th through August 25th and will be accompanied by many works of art that feature the hats in Seuss's collection.

Geisel in his San Diego State band hat with his wife, Audrey. (Photograph courtesy Dr. Seuss Enterprises, L.P.)

"Believe me, when you get a dozen people seated at a fairly formal dinner party," his widow, Audrey, said in an interview for a 1999 educational video, "and they've all got on perfectly ridiculous chapeaus, the evening takes care of itself."

Artwork done by Geisel for his own enjoyment is part of the exhibit and will be featured when the tour comes to the Chuck Jones Gallery in August. For more details, please contact the Gallery at 888-294-9880 or via email at