What is Oregon Cartoon Institute?

Anne Richardson and Dennis Nyback started Oregon Cartoon Institute in 2007. We research Oregon contributions to American animation and cartooning history, and share that information in public history/arts education events designed to celebrate and inform. We have created programs about Mel Blanc (1908-1989), Carl Barks (1901-2000), Basil Wolverton (1909-1978), Lew Cook (1909-1983), Pinto Colvig (1892-1967), Harry Smith (1923-1991) and Bill Plympton (b. 1946).

Is Oregon Cartoon Institute a non profit organization?

Yes. Since 2011, we have been fiscally sponsored by Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission, a 501 c3 non profit organization whose mission is to discover, celebrate and commemorate Oregon’s diverse literary and cultural heritage, raising awareness through media, memorials, and public events.

Who is Oregon Cartoon Institute, exactly?

Anne Richardson pursues a deeper understanding of the intersection of Oregon history and Oregon film history as the director of Oregon Cartoon Institute and creator of the film history initiative, Oregon Movies, A to Z. Her MFA is from Columbia University School of the Arts, Film Division. She grew up in Portland, Oregon.

Dennis Nyback is a film archivist, programmer and curator. He has been a guest at dozens of international film festivals and on the jury of Kinofilm Short Film Festival (Manchester, England, 2000), Interfilm Festival (Berlin, 2001) and KLIK Animation Festival (Amsterdam, 2009). Of sixth generation Oregon pioneer stock, he lives in Portland, Oregon.

How does Oregon Cartoon Institute work?

OCI collaborates with partner organizations and institutions to present public history/arts education events which illuminate Oregon’s rich film, animation, and cartooning history. For Carl Barks and Basil Wolverton, we made a short video. For Lew Cook and Pinto Colvig, we invited guest lecturers. For Mel Blanc, we organized a month of events: a four part screening series, a five part lecture series, three walking tours and one bike tour, all presented in partnership with Oregon Jewish Museum, Oregon Historical Society, and PSU’s School of Fine & Performing Arts.

Who pays for Oregon Cartoon Institute programs?

We sell tickets to the public, and have been fortunate to receive support from Kinsman Foundation and Miller Foundation.
What is Oregon Cartoon Institute’s relationship to Oregon Historical Society?

Anne Richardson and Dennis Nyback were on the advisory committee for Oregon Historical Society’s COMICS CITY USA exhibit, the first OHS exhibit to address the history of print cartooning in Oregon. UNDERGROUND USA is designed to complement, support, and celebrate that exhibit.

What is Oregon Cartoon Institute’s relationship to Oregon Movies, A to Z?

Oregon Movies, A to Z is a side project of Oregon Cartoon Institute. As curators for the 2009 Oregon Sesquicentennial Film Festival at Marylhurst University, Dennis Nyback and Anne Richardson opened up their exploration of Oregon animation and cartooning to include Oregon film. Projects which came directly from that festival include the film blog Oregon Movies, A to Z, which ran from 2008 to 2013; the 2014 James Blue Tribute blog; and the 2014-2015 Mid Century Oregon Genius screening series.

Who has partnered with Oregon Cartoon Institute in the past?

Oregon Cartoon Institute has partnered with Disjecta, Marylhurst University, Oregon Historical Society, Oregon Jewish Museum, OMSI, Portland State University, Ethos Music Center, Oregon Cultural Heritage Commission, Karl Lind Films, Hollywood Theatre, The Late Now, Northwest Animation Festival, James and Richard Blue Foundation, Southern Oregon Historical Society, Jordan Schnitzer Museum of Art, MovieMaker Magazine, SIFF Cinema, and Western Washington University.


UNDERGROUND USA is a public history/art education event made possible in part by a grant from the Kinsman Foundation and by a grant from the James F. and Marion L. Miller Foundation. It is presented by Oregon Cartoon Institute in partnership with UO Comics & Cartooning Studies and PSU Comic Studies, with support from Oregon Historical Society and McMenamins.

Comic City USA is at Oregon Historical Society, 1200 SW Park Ave, until Jan. 31, 2017.

“People who read them when they first came out remember the initial impact — like getting whacked in the head with a two by four.” Patrick Rosenkranz, on underground comics