By Nicole Royse
Summer in Arizona means it’s hot and time to jump in the pool or head indoors. It’s also an ideal time to check some of the Valley’s great museums. The ASU Art Museum is currently featuring the fun for all ages exhibition Funny Papers featured in both of their main galleries, curated by Jean Makin and supported by the Evelyn Smith Exhibition Fund. Do you remember Sunday mornings reading the comics as your parents read the Sunday paper? This show showcases some of your favorite comics, highlighting an exciting range of work including historical comic strips, ceramics, and mixed media contemporary artworks. Funny Papers aims to showcase how the comic has influenced and been an important part of art throughout history.
Entering the gallery viewers are greeted by small collection of “Felix the Cat” comic strips. There is a captivating mix of old and new within this exhibition. Visitors are able to explore old comic strips, sculptures, and even play a giant game of chess with robot toys. A striking lithograph “GLI Strategici” created by Grossi in 1877 illustrates playing war. There is also a fascinating collection of stoneware; a highlight of the exhibition is a small group of works created by Russell Bannett Alttan of important war figureheads Hitler, Mussolini, and Roosevelt.
A large mixed media painting created by Pedro Alvarez titled “African Abstract” collages newspaper clippings, comic strips and paint to create something both colorful and engaging. An enormous chess game graces the gallery floor, but with a unique twist chess pieces have been exchanged for Action Figure toys which visitors are encouraged to play with in Paulo Nenflidio’s “Alien Chess”. There are several wonderful areas for children to sit and read books, play with puppets, as well as create their very own comic strip while they sit and get inspired by history and contemporary art.
Head to the ASU Art Museum and enjoy this wonderful exhibition with the entire family, on view until September 6th, 2014. The ASU Art Museum is located at 699 S. Mill Ave., Suite 108, in Tempe. This museum is open Tuesday through Saturday 11:00am to 8:00pm and the museum is free to the public. Then why not head down and check out all the fun on Mill Avenue and walk along Tempe Beach Park!
For more information about the museum or events please visit ASU Art Museum here.