I recently completed this little animated spot for the Wump Mucket Puppets and their upcoming touring program "Space is the Place" (yes, that title is a nod to jazz legend Sun Ra ... can you spot the little Ra-related easter egg?) The WMP troupe obviously takes a lot of influence from Sesame Street, and it delights me that people have said this animation gives them that vibe. The telescope scene was done via cutouts. Also in the spirit of Sesame Street, the Wump Muckets also had their performance broadcast on PBS a few years ago. There are currently 27(!) shows booked for the new "Space is the Place" program.
I was fortune enough to get to create poster for the Mini Microcinema and their screenings/programming this summer (hence the sun centerpiece filming with a Super 8 camera). As I wrote about last year, the MM is a wonderful small cinema space that screens independent and experimental films of all varieties, including plenty of animation.
Even five years ago, it would have seemed impossible to imagine that anywhere in Cincinnati would show things Zagreb Film and Latin American animation showcases, the works of Sally Cruikshank, or the annual "Animation Show of Shows" shorts showcase. These extend beyond just your typical arthouse theater and show the true emphasis on all sorts of experimental film and animation as an artform. These are an animation junkie's dream come true, and the types of screenings you would previously only see in major city markets. And at that, the Mini is a nonprofit organization and every screening is free of charge. With that in mind, I highly recommend purchasing a membership to help support them. Oh, and when you buy a membership, you receive a large (18x 24") high quality poster of your choosing ... either mine here, or one of several by other local artists.
My extremely hardworking, creative puppeteer pal Terrence and his Wump Mucket Puppet troupe make their PBS television debut this weekend on the season premier of Cincinnati affiliate CET's "The Art Show". I was at the filming at the Taft Museum back in August and the show and turnout was fantastic, I can't wait to see it translated on the screen. It will air on Saturday, January 7th (6PM) and Sunday the 8th (8PM). Check your local listings and try to catch it!
Oh no! Only ten days to go and about $40,000 needed.
Wish I could have sprung for the animation cel if $550 was a little more expendable. The original green Grover toy is a pretty cool perk, too.
If you haven't read the original book by Michael Davis, it is quite good.
Following in the tradition set fourth by Sesame Street, my pal Terrence and his Wump Mucket Puppets troupe will be making their television PBS debut (Cincinnati's local affiliate CET) soon. The taping will be happening today at 2PM during the puppet show at the Taft Museum of Art downtown. See you there!
Update: The performance was great! Can't wait to see it air.
Not the most topical announcement, but last night was the premiere screening of "A Show of Hands", a documentary film by Wright State student Sean Mangan about Terrence Burke and his amazing Cincinnati-based Wump Mucket Puppet troupe. The film chronicles Terrence turning his lifelong interest of puppetry into the passionate spectacle it is today following a stint of depression due to a serious life event in the early 2000s. The film was great and featured a Q&A with the puppeteer and director after. I, of course, had to ask Terrence about his favorite Jim Henson creation.
WMP does outstanding work locally with what seems like a never-ending schedule of library/school/charity shows, and has also toured around the country at various puppetry festivals and even a New England tour last year. Terrence (as well as his family ... his wife handcrafts all of the puppets herself) pours his heart and soul into this and I highly encourage everyone to get out to one of his puppet shows!
I whipped up this flyer for the show at the last minute as a gift.
Oh, and I met someone at the screening who happens to drive a real life "Cat Bus" (of My Neighbor Totoro fame). There is so much to say about this particular event that I must concede, instead, to just post the photo and remain speechless.