Comic Books to Castles--EDGE-y Workshops and Lectures

For Immediate Release
July 16, 2012
Media Contact:
Chris Potash
(610) 432-4333 ext. 125



Summer workshops help adults and kids explore Fantastic themes for themselves

Allentown, Pa—A series of weekend workshops and lectures related to the magical summer exhibition At the Edge: Art of the Fantastic is in full swing at the Allentown Art Museum of the Lehigh Valley. The hands-on workshops allow adults and children to create their own fantastical works with the help of artists who work professionally in the fields of commercial and comic-book illustration, while the lectures by art insiders provide unforgettable insight into some of the most stunning historical and contemporary works hanging in this one-time special exhibit.

Here’s a listing of the visitor-centered summer programming surrounding At the Edge:

An Afternoon with Mark Schulltz

Saturday, July 21

noon–4 p.m.

Forced into hiding by a global ecological cataclysm, humans emerge from their underground warrens half a millennium later to discover that Earth has been totally transformed. All of the familiar flora and fauna are gone, replaced by a radically altered natural order populated by rampaging dinosaurs and strange, new creatures. It takes guts, grim determination, ingenuity and a whole lot of old-fashioned luck just to survive, much less thrive, in this alien wilderness.…

Welcome to the adventure-filled world of illustrator Mark Schultz. This promotional copy for Xenozoic, a collection of epic graphic stories starring ace mechanic Jack Tenrec and the lovely scientist Hannah Dundee, sets the scene for much of Schultz’s richly realized ink-and-brush artwork. Schultz is a prime practitioner of sequential art, a term attributed to the cartoonist Will Eisner in the mid-1980s, defined simply but powerfully as "the arrangement of pictures or images and words to narrate a story or dramatize an idea." Eisner is considered to have been a driving force behind the popularity of the graphic novel, a medium that Schultz has continued to explore and expand.

A lifelong interest in adventure fiction and science led Schultz to create the award-winning comics seriesXenozoic Tales. He is also the co-creator of the undersea adventure SubHuman, as well as the author of such nonfiction projects as The Stuff of Life: A Graphic Guide to Genetics and DNA and the still-running comic strip Prince Valiant. At the Allentown Art Museum on July 21—fresh from his appearance as a guest of honor on several panels at Comic-Con International 2012 in San Diego—Mark will begin the afternoon with an overview of his career as a cartoonist and an illustrator, supported by a Powerpoint presentation that illustrates his influences and inspirations along with his original work. He will speak in detail about his choice to work primarily in monochromatic media, and the uses of ink, pen, and brush to achieve specific effects.

During a walk-through tour of the Museum’s groundbreaking At the Edge special exhibition, Mark will comment on select monochromatic works and examples of strong design. In the demonstration/workshop part of the program, Mark will guide participants through his process of creating an artwork in the dry-brush technique he’s mastered. Attendees will be supplied with materials to execute a finished piece of their own, starting with a dramatically lit model through the design of the work and a quick pencil rendering of the subject, followed by various brush-and-ink techniques.

Published collections of Mark’s work are available in advance from

$35 members, $50 nonmembers. Register now on or by calling the Museum at 610-432-4333, ext. 110.


Superhero Saturday with Scott Hanna

Saturday, August 4

1–3 p.m.

The comic strip first emerged as a mass medium in newspapers in the United States in the early twentieth century, a practice that continues to this day. The strips eventually were expanded into longer stories and printed in cheap and colorful newsprint booklets—and the comic book was born.

Comic artist Scott Hanna has spent more than twenty years penciling and inking some of the most beloved and recognizable comic-book characters in history, including

Batman & Robin, G.I. Joe, and the Justice League for DC Comics and the Amazing Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain America, the Incredible Hulk, X-Men, Avengers, and Thor for Marvel Comics. Hanna’s work has been published also in well over a hundred graphic novels.

            On Saturday, August 4, children ages eight to thirteen are invited to join Scott for an afternoon of cartooning fun. In addition to sharing the stories behind some of his more popular works, Scott will lead workshop participants in sketching, drawing, and developing their own superhero persona to take home with them. All materials are provided.

$18 members, $25 nonmembers. Session is limited to twenty-five participates. Register now on or by calling the Museum at 610-432-4333, ext. 110.


Here are other upcoming events/lectures happening at the Allentown Art Museum during At the Edge: Art of the Fantastic, which continues through September 9:  

Historical Context of Fantasy Art, with Peter Trippi

Sunday, July 22

2 p.m.

Fantasy art has its roots deep in the history of Western art. Art historian Peter Trippi will identify the key artists who helped develop the genre we now know as imaginative realism. Trippi is the editor of Fine Art Connoisseur, the magazine that serves collectors of historical and contemporary representational painting, sculpture, drawings, and prints. As director of New York’s Dahesh Museum of Art for three years, Trippi presented exhibitions of nineteenth-century European art. In 2002, Phaidon Press published Trippi’s monograph J. W. Waterhouse, which reassesses the Victorian painter best known for his The Lady of Shalott at Tate Britain.

$5 members, $15 nonmembers. Register now on or by calling the Museum at 610-432-4333, ext. 110.


Daedal Doodle Day

Sunday, August 5

1–3 p.m.

Celebrate Creativity with a capital “C” on this special Sunday with artist and illustrator Victor Stabin as he engages children and families in the Museum’s Art Ways Gallery with his passion for combining words and art. Following a fun-filled presentation where visitors will be introduced to such fanciful creatures as an osmotic osprey, a quodlibetical quahog, and a bifoliated bonito,Victor will sign his unique A-B-C book, Daedal Doodle, while fantasy-themed art activities continue in the Crayola Classroom. Free, as part of Free Sundays at the Museum


Behind the Flying Saucers: A Revealing Look into the Art of Earle K. Bergey, with Joshua David Bergey

Sunday, August 12

2 p.m.

Best known for painting tastefully brazen portraits of women and fantastical visions of space, Earle K. Bergey (1901–1952) was one of the most prolific American illustration artists of the twentieth century and an unbridled force in all genres of pulp fiction, pin-up, and paperback art. Born in Philadelphia and educated at the Pennsylvania Academy of the Fine Arts, Bergey captured the country’s dreams and nightmares from the Roaring Twenties to his tragic death. This lecture presents what it was like to be an iconic image-maker in a defining era between the two great wars, using eye-popping examples of artwork, rare archival materials, and first-hand, highly personal accounts. Joshua David Bergey is the youngest grandson of Earle K. Bergey and a professional writer and artist who teaches and lectures in the field of twentieth century American illustration.

$5 members, $15 nonmembers. Register now on or by calling the Museum at 610-432-4333, ext. 110.


“A Grand and Beautiful Castle”: Howard Pyle and the Fantastic, with Mary Holahan

Sunday, September 9

2 p.m.

Artist Howard Pyle made pirates, castles, and war scenes come to life. The Father of American Illustration was born in Wilmington, Delaware, and taught and inspired generations of illustrators. Mary Holahan is the Curator of Collections (the head curator) at the Delaware Museum of Art and a specialist in historic Illustration. She has authored a book on Howard Pyle and is a specialist on the Brandywine Illustrators.

$5 members, $15 nonmembers. Register now on or by calling the Museum at 610-432-4333, ext. 110.




For hi-res illustrative photos, or to arrange an interview with an artist or lecturer regarding his or her upcoming appearance at the Museum, contact Chris Potash at 610-432-4333, ext. 125, or cpotash [at] allentownartmuseum [dot] org