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Cartoon Art Exhibition Opens at the Bruce

A glimpse of the expansive exhibition now on view at the Bruce: “Masterpieces from the Museum of Cartoon Art.”

Now on view at the Bruce Museum in Greenwich, CT, Masterpieces from the Museum of Cartoon Art showcases more than 100 original works celebrating the history of this unique art form in America.

The centerpiece of the exhibition, on view through April 20, will be a recreation of the Museum of Cartoon Art’s Hall of Fame. Thirty-two artists were elected to this prestigious group between 1975 and 1997 including Walt Disney, Milton Caniff, Chuck Jones, Rube Goldberg, Al Capp, and Herblock.  Each honoree is represented by a superlative example of their work and a handsome brass plaque.  

The first institution dedicated to the collection, preservation, and exhibition of cartoon art, the Museum of Cartoon Art was opened in Greenwich in August 1974.  Founded by cartoonist and longtime Greenwich resident Mort Walker, it moved to Port Chester/Rye Brook, NY, in 1977, reopened in Boca Raton, FL, in 1996, and donated its collection to the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum in 2008.

Treasures from this rich and varied repository represent all of the cartoon genres, including comic strips, newspaper panels, comic books, editorial cartoons, magazine cartoons, caricature, illustration and animation. The artwork is on loan from The Ohio State University Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum.

Brian Walker, a former director of the Museum of Cartoon Art, who has been responsible for more than 70 cartoon exhibitions, is serving as guest curator. “I am very excited to display this collection in my hometown of Greenwich,” says Brian. “I’m sure many residents fondly remember the days when the museum was a local attraction. The exhibit is a tribute to my father’s dedicated efforts to establish an institution where the public could view cartoon art on a regular basis. His dream is now being continued by the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum.”

In a Greenwich Time preview, reporter Meredith Guinness writes, “The way Brian Walker sees it, the staff at the Bruce Museum has been warned.

“I told them, ‘This is going to be one of the most popular exhibitions you’ve ever had,” said Walker, the co-curator of the upcoming show called “Masterpieces from the Museum of Cartoon Art.” “It’s just a really appealing thing.

“Who doesn’t like cartooning?”

Masterpieces from the Museum of Cartoon Art features some special programming, including a Feb. 18 lecture “Breaking Into the Boys Club: A Whirlwind History of Women and Cartooning” with Jenny Robb, curator and associate professor at the Billy Ireland. A March 7 panel discussion, “The Golden Age of Cartooning in Connecticut,” will feature Cullen Murphy, Chance Browne and Brian, Greg and Neal Walker.

For more information, visit brucemuseum.org or call 203-869-0376.