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Pixar exhibit poised to open at Oakland art museum

By Sean O’Connell
Hollywoodnews.com: With “Toy Story 3” riding high at the box office — tallying $380.5 million to become the highest-grossing picture of 2010 to date — Pixar seems poised for a celebration. According to a new release, that party starts Saturday, July 31.

On that day, the Oakland Museum of California will open the brand new exhibit “PIXAR: 25 Years of Animation.” A major exhibition, the collection will offer more than 500 works by the Pixar Animation Studios artists, including drawings, paintings and sculptures that illustrate the creative process and craftsmanship behind the studio’s beloved computer-animated films.

Some might remember this exhibit, which opened at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 2005 before embarking on a worldwide tour. But it’s finally coming home — or, at least, as close to Pixar’s home in nearby Emeryville, California as possible.

Expanding the presentation, however, will be the integration of relevant artwork and objects from the OMCA collections that expand the exhibition to include rare, 19th century Eadweard Muybridge motion study photographs, an early zoetrope, and interactive stations in the art and history galleries that unlock the creative process and history of animation.

But the centerpiece of the exhibit remains the concept drawings, sketches, paintings, maquettes, storyboards and colorscripts created for Pixar’s finest works, from the original “Toy Story” to recent hits like “Up” and “WALL-E.”

The “PIXAR” exhibit will showcase more than 500 artifacts, including many of the pencil drawings; paintings in acrylic, gouache, and watercolor; and sculptures that form the backbone of the computer-generated images (CGIs) for which Pixar has become internationally recognized.

In addition, a 208-page, full-color catalog accompanies the exhibition, published by Chronicle Books for OMCA. It is available exclusively atwww.museumca.org.

The exhibition opens on July 31, and runs through Jan. 9, 2011.

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About Sean O'Connell

Sean O'Connell is a nationally recognized film critic. His reviews have been published in print ('The Washington Post,' 'USA Today') and online (AMC FilmCritic.com, MSN's Citysearch) since 1996. He's a weekly contributor to several national radio programs. He is a longstanding member of the Broadcast Film Critics Association (BFCA), the Online Film Critics Society (OFCS), and the Southeastern Film Critics View all articles by Sean O'Connell Association (SEFCA).

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