Current exhibition

Disney's great artists

Barks, Taliaferro, and Gottfredson
March 05, 2022 - June 26, 2022

From March 5th, 2022 to June 26th , 2022, Micky, Donald and their friends will be in the messmer art gallery. The exhibition “Disney’s Great Draftsmen” presents the works of Walt Disney’s innovative draftsmen – Carl Barks, Al Taliaferro and Floyd Gottfredson – and thus deals with the topic of sequential pictorial art of the 20th century. Based on original sketches and storyboards from the years 1933 to 1995, the reference to cartoons such as the early Silly Symphonies is presented and the intermedia interface between comics and animated films is thus addressed.

Walt Disney © Walt Disney Company 2022 / Courtesy Reichelt and Brockmann Collection

The exhibition shows the way from the sketch to the finished comic and takes a look behind the scenes by showing the working methods of the creators of the world-famous characters . The old masters are also juxtaposed with contemporary draftsmen , which makes it possible to understand the long development of the popular comic characters from the beginnings to the present day. Look forward to extraordinary exhibits with rarity value!

The best-known Disney animator, Carl Barks (1901-2000), first came to Disney Studios in his thirties and initially worked in the animation department . He made his debut as a draftsman with the 1936 Mickey Mouse short film Thru the Mirror .

Carl Barks © Walt Disney Company 2022 / Courtesy Reichelt and Brockmann Collection

Many of the characters that are still popular today were penned by Carl Barks , such as Scrooge McDuck , Gyro Gearloose and Gustav Gans . Barks also depicted the residents of Duckburg in art forms other than comics. Among other things, some print graphics will also be on display.

The duck named Donald Duck penned by the cartoonist Al Taliaferro (1905 – 1969) made its first appearance in the 1934 short film The Wise Little Hen . Moving on, Donald became popular through the Silly Symphonies of the 1930s. Donald Duck as a comic was not originally planned and could only be realized as a daily (daily strip) in the Pasadena Star News in 1938 after lengthy persuasion by Al Taliaferro. Later, Al Taliaferro expands the duck repertoire to include Donald’s fiancé Daisy Duck and his nephews Huey, Dewey, and Louie .

Floyd Gottfredson (1905-1986), the great Mouse Man, first drew for the Silly Symphonies film series and has been bringing Mickey Mouse stories to life since the 1930s.

Floyd Gottfredson © Walt Disney Company 2022 / Courtesy Reichelt and Brockmann Collection

At first he drew the so-called daily strips in black and white, but from 1932 he was also commissioned to design colored Sunday pages about Mickey Mouse. Until Bill Walsh was hired by Disney, Gottfredson was solely responsible for the plots of the Mickey stories. Since he even edited the lyricists’ dialogue , the story and character development is consistent over the years.

Jan Gulbransson (*1949) is the grandson of the well-known painter and graphic artist Olaf Gulbransson. In terms of characters and narrative style , he follows his predecessors and his role model Carl Barks, while his themes are becoming more contemporary .

Ulrich Schröder (*1964) is one of the most famous German graphic artists and comic artists and became known as an art director and illustrator of Disney comics. He designed the artwork and promotional materials for Disney for 17 years. In 2006 Schröder left Disney Europe and founded the Duckworks studio . Among other things, he became known for his large-format Donald Duck drawings and his covers for the European Disney booklets.


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