Kirby at work, Thousand Oaks, CA, Sept. 1972. Photo by and (c) David Folkman.
Comic Book Apocalypse: The Graphic World of Jack Kirby has been open for about two weeks, and has five weeks left—until October 10. The response has been…wow. Fantastic. Overwhelming!
More than 100 people came to the exhibition during its first couple of hours (on Monday afternoon, Aug. 24). Attendance has run high since, with CSUN students, artists, comics fans, and folks from the larger community visiting each day. The grand opening reception on Saturday, Aug. 29, brought in hundreds of people, a nearly standing-room-only crowd in fact. Several people I talked to that night said they were going to come back to explore the exhibition another day, when they could get a closer, more leisurely look at the art! Two days later, on Monday the 31st, Mark Evanier’s gallery talk, hosted by the Arts Council for CSUN, drew a sizable crowd, including Arts Council members, CSUN students, and fans. I can’t count how many people told me afterward that they loved the talk.
We’ll get some photos up here ASAP!
Many thanks to my family for being part of the celebration and giving their energy and time to the cause! Thanks also to Rand Hoppe and Tom Kraft of the Jack Kirby Museum and Research Center for giving so much to the exhibition and doing so much to document it (expect photos and video from them soon). Thank you to Mark for giving that wonderful talk and posting news to his blog! As always, thanks to my CSUN colleagues and supporters, and to the CSUN Art Galleries team, particularly Gallery Director and exhibition co-designer Jim Sweeters.
NEWS: Panel discussion and catalog signing, Sept. 26
On Saturday, Sept. 26, at 1:00 p.m., we’ll be holding a panel in the midst of the exhibition, featuring cultural theorist Scott Bukatman of Stanford, artist, critic, and curator Doug Harvey, artist Steve Roden, and my colleague from the U of Oregon, Ben Saunders, co-editor of our catalog. On that day we’ll also be premiering the catalog, and other catalog contributors will be on hand to sign copies! Our long-deferred catalog has already drawn a lot of interest and orders, and will be available at the Gallery Store (right next to the exhibition) by the 26th. Co-published by CSUN and IDW, with design by Randy Dahlk (who has designed many IDW Artists’ Editions), this catalog is not only a memento of the exhibition but also a collection of twenty essays and 100-plus images, many reproduced at full-page or double-page size. It’s going to be a monster, in the best sense! Please come—once again this event is free and open to the public!
Chris Wilson covers the Apocalypse
There’s been a lot of press for Comic Book Apocalypse. Besides the many features and previews I’ve noted before, Steven Brower has done a cool heads-up at Print, the CSUN Sundial has run a nice article and follow-up review, various comics news sites, including Den of Geek, CBR and io9, have run articles, and individual bloggers such as Bob Bretall (Comics Spectrum), Alex Chung, Geoff Grogan, have shared photos, news, and reflections. Nancy Ewart’s article for the Examiner seems to have generated a great deal of interest and brought people in. Also, this video walk-through of the opening reception on YouTube (courtesy of ytshawzam) gives a sense of the crowd and energy level that night, and Chris Wilson of the CSUN Journalism program prepared a snazzy piece for Valley View News that ran a few days ago and can now be viewed on YouTube. We hope for and expect more coverage, both journalistic and critical, in the weeks ahead.