An incredibly unique exhibit has just landed at the University of Findlay’s Mazza Museum. The works of Hardie Gramatky, an early author and illustrator for Walt Disney who later created the Little Toot tugboat series, has come to life through an extensive exhibit.
In 2017, the Mazza Museum acquired a large percentage of Gramatky’s original artwork, as well as his personal studio furniture and art supplies. Dan Chudzinski, curator of the Mazza Museum, stated, “From the moment these relics were uncrated, it was evident that Hardie’s spirit was alive and well, and the idea for a very special exhibition was set into motion.”
For the first time, Gramatky’s studio and the tools of his trade will be on display along with a variety of his original works in an immersive, three-dimensional exhibit. “Visitors will now have the unique opportunity to experience the essence of the artist, from his first sparks of inspiration through his storyboards and manuscripts, to the original paintings and his final published work,” said Chudzinski.
The exhibit will take visitors through the progression of Gramatky’s life, from studying at Chouinard Art Institute, to working directly with Walt Disney, to excelling in his own career as an author and illustrator.
Featured works include original illustrations created for Walt Disney Studios, the final painting that Hardie completed before his death in 1979, and an original illustration from Little Toot and the Loch Ness Monster, a book published posthumously and completed by his wife, Dorothea, and daughter, Linda.