Modernism, Mr. Magoo & More:
New and other works by master animator, artist and filmmaker Jules Engel
The inaugural exhibit at the Williams Gallery's new location features a selection of Jules Engel's animation cels, drawings, paintings and prints from 1960-2001. Over fifteen of the works are new - a series of lithographs that vibrate with color, form and movement.
Animation cels © 1960-2001 Jules Engel
Saturday September 22nd through October 20th, 2001
Opening Reception: Saturday, Sept. 22nd,
Silkscreen © 1986 Jules Engel
About the Artist
As founding director of the California Institute of the Arts Experimental Animation Program, where he continues to teach, Engel has shared his knowledge and energy with young artists since 1970.
All of this work in electronic media has not distracted from his painting, drawing and especially printmaking. Engel is still incredibly prolific, creating compelling works on paper that vibrate with intelligence, spirit and masterful control. A flurry of recent prints reveal his experimentation with color, bold adventures in line and geometric shape, as well as his trademark sense of movement. After all, the artist notes, movement is and always has been the very soul of his visual artistry.
"Dance has always been an enormous influence," the artist recalls. "I saw the Ballet Russes at the Monte Carlo and that did it. Watching great dancers like Danilova, Baronova and Leonide Massine - as well as the choreography of George Balanchine - my vision began to emerge. Merce Cunningham and Martha Graham helped to further expand that vision."
About the Exhibit
The works in the current exhibit include animation cels of Mr. Magoo and Gerald McBoing-Boing, paintings, drawings and new limited edition lithographs. Also on view are animation drawings from Engel's 1992 film Skyscraper, in colored pencil, pen and marker.
"You'll see a lot of color in my more recent works, more so than fifteen years ago," says Engel, who won't reveal his age, but is probably in his eighties. "Either you have a sense of color or you don't. If you don't, you can learn from the masters, like Paul Klee, Ferdinand Leger and Pablo Picasso."
His heartfelt advice to young artists sounds a little like the "Just Do It" slogan: "What's most important is to do and do and do," Engel says. "Just keep working."
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