For those not in NYC or San Francisco, there’s a new museum devoted to cartoonists smack dab in the middle of the US. Here’s their release:
What do you call five cartoonists hanging on a wall?
You call them deserving.
Editorial cartoonist Jim Lange, Jack and Carole Bender who write and draw the comic strip Alley Oop, and late comics writer E. Nelson Bridwell and comics artist Gray Morrow will be the first cartoonists inducted into the new Oklahoma Cartoonists Hall of Fame.
Their induction was part of the festivities for the Grand Opening celebration of the Toy and Action Figure Museum located at 111 S. Chickasaw in downtown Pauls Valley. Its doors opened October 15th, and this unique, interactive museum houses the new Oklahoma Cartoonists Collection.
Jim Lange became the editorial cartoonist for the Daily Oklahoman in 1950. He has won fifteen Freedom Foundation Awards, the American Editorial Cartoonists Ink Bottle Award, and was inducted into the Journalism Hall of Fame in 1993. Some of his more than 17,000 editorial cartoons were published in an anthology of editorial cartoonists, Todays Cartoons, in 1962, and recently released as a book titled Lange.
Separately and as a team, Jack and Carole Bender have produced an astonishing body of work. In addition to writing and drawing the internationally syndicated comic strip Alley Oop since 1991, the corpus of their work includes editorial and sports cartoons, covers for several national sports magazines, comic books, and a biography of folk singer Bob Gibson. Oop reaches an estimated 25 million readers, and is syndicated in about 500 newspapers.
E. Nelson Bridwell left Oklahoma City to become the first comics fan to write Captain Marvel, Superman, Wonder Woman and many other comic book icons. He created and wrote The Inferior Five, The Maniaks, Angel and the Ape and Suicide Squad for DC Comics. Bridwell also wrote for Mad magazine and edited many collections of comic book stories from the 1930s to the 1970s. Marie OBrien, Bridwells cousin, will accept his award.
Oklahoma Associate Gray Morrow is a legendary artist who worked with Oklahoma writer Archie Goodwin on many comic book titles including Creepy and Eerie. Morrow also edited and drew for Archie Comics, illustrated The Spectre for DC Comics, and Powerline for Marvel Comics. Famous for his magazine and book covers, Morrow also drew the Buck Rogers and Tarzan comic strips. Pocho Morrow, Grays widow, will accept his award.
In addition to those inducted, the cartoonists whose work is now on display include include Chester Gould (Dick Tracy), Archie Goodwin (Star Wars, Spider-Man), Dan Piraro (Bizarro), Dave Simpson (editorial cartoons), Russ Myers (Broom Hilda), Jack and Carole Bender (Alley Oop), Zack Mosley (Smilin Jack), Chan Lowe (editorial cartoons), E. Nelson Bridwell (Wonder Woman), R. A. Jones (DC Showcase), Ron Wolfe (Tulsa Tribune), John Wooley and Terry Tidwell (The Twilight Avenger), Mel Odom (Harte of Darkness), Sam Cobean (New Yorker), Michael Roberts (Angel of Death, etc.), Jim Lange (editorial cartoonist), Steve Erwin (Batman), Clarence Allen (editorial cartoons), Butch Burcham (Dark Wolf), Dayne Dudley (sports cartoons), Michael Vance (Holiday Out), Don Flowers (Glamor Girls) and Jaxon Renick (Chaos).
Current Oklahoma associates include Neal Adams (Green Lantern), Gray Morrow (Tarzan), Scott Hampton (Batman), Frank Bolle (Apartment 3-G), Don Martin (Mad), Dave Graue (Alley Oop), Ric Estrada (Wonder Woman), Ande Parks (Green Arrow), Tom Derenick (Captain America),Wayne Truman (Eclipse Monthly), Richard Grass Green (Xal-Kor), Duane Hanson (Holiday Out), Stan Timmons (Marvel), C. T. Smith (Charlton), Bruce McCorkindale (Twilight Avenger), James Baldwin, Rob Davis (Star Trek), Mike Miller, Scott Youtsey, Steve Stiles, Dave Simons, Tom Floyd, Gary Dumm, Dave Hoover, Russ Sever, Doug Hazelwood, and Jon Suter (Craig).
Della Wilson is the Executive Director of the 6,000 sq. ft. interactive museum that features 7,000 toys and almost 300 pieces of original comics art. A sure-fire destination for fun, Pauls Valley is now the Toy and Comics Capitol of Oklahoma!
For more information on the Toy and Action Figure Museum and the Oklahoma Cartoonists Museum, go to www.actionfiguremuseum.com or http://www.fourcolorcommentary.blogspot.com/. Or you can mail email Michael Vance at MiklVance@Yahoo.com
(Can’t wait to visit!)