Comedy central: ‘serious art’ returns to Animation Pavilion

Comedy central: ‘serious art’ returns to Animation Pavilion – International Artexpo New York February 26-March 1

Signifying a sustained surge in popularity–as well as the continued unification of publishers, distributors, representatives and artists involved in the genre–the Animation Pavilion returns to International Artexpo New York after a successful debut at last year’s show. Exhibitors who are returning to showcase cartoon and comic art include Animated Animations, Animazing Gallery, Choice Collectibles, Clampett Studio Collection, Linda Jones Enterprises and Kracov Creations. They are joined again this year by, the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art (MoCCA), whose chairman, Lawrence Klein, gave a seminar at last year’s show.

Calling last year’s pavilion “awesome” and “wonderful pandemonium,” Animazing Gallery Owner Heidi Leigh said that the decision for those involved in cartoon and comic art to exhibit together benefited them all. “I think that the united front that the animation industry presented created a lot of excitement and synergy,” she said. These are feelings that Animation Pavilion exhibitors plan to preserve. For example, Leigh said that Animazing Gallery plans to launch “something special” with Clampett Studio Collections at this year’s show. The two had booth space across from each other in the pavilion last year.

For his part, Klein of MoCCA said he hopes to show that comic and cartoon art is not just for kids but for adults, too. “It’s a serious art form,” he said. MoCCA plans to display art that represents the range of styles encompassed by the genre, including examples of animation, comic strip, comic book and political cartoon art. The plan, according to Klein, is to create “a museum in a booth.” A silent auction and educational programs that will help raise awareness of how comic art affects society are also slated.

Leigh, who is on the MoCCA board of advisors, said she is happy to see the museum have a stronger presence in the pavilion this year. “[It] gives credibility to the industry,” she said.

So does the Animation Pavilion. Citing the ups and downs of the genre in recent years, Leigh said those who remain involved in cartoon and comic art today are strong, if fewer in number. “It’s important for people to see that the animation world is still alive,” she said.

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