Sunday, December 5, 2010
Happy Birthday, Walt: A View On Art
To honor Walt Disney on this, the 109th anniversary of his birth, here's a rarely-seen 1964 photo from the Los Angeles Times of Walt visiting an early version of the California Institute of Arts (CalArts), the famed arts school founded by Walt. 1964 was also the year Walt threw the Hollywood premiere of Mary Poppins on August 27, 1964, as a benefit for the burgeoning school, at which Walt screened a short film entitled The CalArts Story. In 1966, Walt had this to say on the subject of the Disney Studio producing "art": "An artist who consciously goes about producing art can become inhibited. It's always easier to talk about art, or to strike a beatnik pose, then it is to create. My artists are asked to 'let go'. We encourage a free-flow of ideas. It is always interesting to me how many people can vividly recall a sequence from a favorite Disney film—they can even tell you the colors! Thus may be nostalgia, or it could be that these films and their creative ideas are becoming a part of art history."