Finding art that truly speaks to your heart, that special piece that makes you smile when you see it hanging in your home or office, isn’t always easy. Luckily for Disney fans, D23 Expo 2011 is the perfect place to find a treasure trove of limited-edition pieces in a wide range of mediums that will surely capture the hearts and imaginations of anyone who has pixie dust coursing through their veins.
Just take a stroll on the main Show Floor and you’ll see what we mean. What an impressive display of talent! From limited-edition prints to silkscreens, paintings, animation cels, and sculptures in all mediums, the choices are endless. Walk a few steps into the Collectors Forum and you’ll meet one of our favorite D23 Expo artists, Dave Lefner (look for the guy in the mohawk!). Since Friday, Dave has been meeting Disney fans and giving demonstrations of the painstaking technique he employs to create his art. It’s a process Picasso used in the ’50s called reduction linocut, and it’s nothing short of genius.
A little blond boy looks on in amazement as Dave presses the inked linoleum block onto paper, revealing an enchanting image of a teacup from the Mad Tea Party attraction at Disneyland. He repeats this process over and over, carving the block to reveal color after brilliant color, eventually producing the final, picture-perfect print.
A native Angeleno, artist Dave has made his love of Los Angeles the focal point of his luminous art, capturing the beauty and historical significance of the unique scenes that give the city its special flair. His latest project, commissioned by D23, took him to one of the world’s most beloved streets, Main Street, U.S.A at Disneyland, where he found ample inspiration. For his first Disney project, he’s producing two spectacular works featuring the iconic Main Street Magic Shop and the classic Crystal Arcade signs. “Main Street, U.S.A. is really beautiful and it evokes so much nostalgia in so many of us,” Dave says. “When D23 approached me to create these pieces, I was super excited about it. With so many great signs and iconic images at the Disney parks, the possibilities are endless.”
Dave’s pieces, which are limited to an edition of 15, are currently on sale at the Walt Disney Archives Treasure Trove store on the second floor.
A Fan Favorite
People have traveled far and wide to meet another Disney artist at the D23 Expo—Noah, from Noah’s Fine Art. This fine artist has delighted Disney fans for a decade with his inspired renditions of Disney and Pixar characters. Collectors prize his original Disney art and Vinylmation™ pieces worldwide. And this weekend, they’ve been lining up, way before sunrise, to get their hands on his coveted creations.
Kathy Galbraith, from Anaheim, California, purchased Noah’s “Remember… It All Started with a Mouse,” a tribute to Walt Disney’s legacy and visionary imagination. The standout piece captures—in exquisite detail—the joy and laughter that come from Walt’s contagious smile. By carefully selecting a beautiful palette of colors, Noah cleverly reveals this year’s celebrated Disney film anniversaries, which include One Hundred and One Dalmatians, Alice in Wonderland, Dumbo and Beauty and the Beast. And his fans love it.
“What I like about Noah’s art is that it’s not just colors and pictures,” Kathy says. “His art actually tells a story. I love this piece because it has Walt but also so many wonderful characters. I really love his work. He’s really good.”
Bill Van, from Rancho Palos Verdes, California, is another fan who can’t get enough of Noah’s work. “I’ve been waiting since five o’clock this morning for The Little Mermaid 9-inch Vinylmation,” he tells D23, proudly holding the little blue treasure in his hand. “There were only 12 of these made,” he adds, gazing at it fondly. “I just spent $600 on it—and it’s totally worth it.”
After an hour meeting fans, shaking hands, taking photos, and signing autographs, the always-smiling bespectacled artist appears genuinely moved by the turnout. “This year has been amazing because D23 has really resonated with the fans and now everybody knows about it,” he says. “You see people here celebrating as a community the things they love the most, and it’s pretty cool. You see people dressing up in costumes and bringing their artwork in to share… For me, it’s always touching to see the fans and their responses to the work. When you see someone come up to you and cry and tell you they see the magic in the work, you realize that it’s not just product. You are actually creating magic and being a part of something special.”
By D23′s Carmen Capone
The D23 Expo continues at the Anaheim Convention Center through 7 p.m. on Sunday.
Dave’s Crystal Arcade 2011 is a reduction linocut diptych limited to an edition of 15. Each image measures 18″ x 12″ and can be purchased at the Walt Disney Archives Treasure Trove store.
Artist Noah creates a stunning image of Walt Disney. Check out his beloved Disney art at the Collectors Forum at the D23 Expo.
D23 Expo attendee Kathy Galbraith from Anaheim, California, excitedly waits to meet artist Noah and get her print of “Remember… It All Started With a Mouse,” signed at the D23 Expo.
Artist Noah brings excited D23 Expo attendees more of his highly collectible Vinylmation™ pieces.