T
Mel Birnkrant Presents:
All of the Art on this site is one of a kind, created by CHARLES PONSTINGL, for the sheer joy of it.
He intended it as loving homage to the Great Comic Artists of former days. 
The images are based upon the work of many, including some that were created by, and are
“Copyright The Walt Disney Company”. The writing and photography is “Copyright Mel Birnkrant”.

THE BAND CONCERT
Continue to THE COMMISSION
Return HOME
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
          “The Band Concert” was the first Mickey Mouse cartoon in color.  It was a landmark in the history of animation.  In it, Mickey is the conductor of a small orchestra, made up of familiar Disney characters.  The band is performing a concert in the park.  Playing the “storm” from “The William Tell Overture” congers up a real tornado that sucks the band members into the heart of an enormous funnel cloud that spins them madly around as they continue to play.

         
How can I best describe this incredible carving, and my reaction to it?  I can think of no better way than to copy and paste a letter, written a few days after it arrived.  I sent this, along with photos, to my friend Rich Olson, who has been a huge fan and admirer of Charles work for a long time.

          "
OK are you ready for this?  This one BLEW ME AWAY.  Perhaps, because of the TORNADO, which is a solid piece of wood that weighs a ton.  This is all Charles concept and realization.  There is no piece of art to lift it from, he had to make it all up himself, and in the process, I believe he has transcended his previous work, and moved into another dimension.  Like the leap from reality to Cubism.  The whole thing seems to be in motion, and the logo he created, and every piece of debris, along with blowing music sheets and flying objects, are all caught up in a great swirling mass that works on real and abstract terms at the same time.  No piece is arbitrary, and all work together in a great sweeping movement.  The carvings continue on the back of the twister where no human eyes can, or will, ever see them.  But Charles knows they are there, the true sign of a labor of love.

        
I find this nothing short of AWESOME.  I still marvel that it exists, and wonder by what miracle it found its way to me, and allowed me to briefly feel that I can own it, momentarily.

         
I saw something wondrous in Charles work, 20 years ago, when it was considerably more modest.  Yet it had a spirit and sense of adventure, that could only come, not from merely breaking rules, but only by truly not knowing any rules exist.  Over the years, Charles has gotten better and better, but, all the while, he has never learned the rules.  And the free spirit of invention he brings to these works is even stronger, now, than it ever was.   While, at the same time, he has become a master carver and polished craftsman.  He still remains a humble modest man, and I often feel that in spite of my constant accolades, he still does not fully realize or appreciate how Fabulous his work really is.

         
I have watched him grow from an inspired and innately talented folk artist and Comic Book lover to become, I believe, a TRUE GENIUS.  I stand in AWE and ADMIRATION of HIM.  He is also a True Friend.”
Come, take a spin....
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE
CLICK ON IMAGE TO ENLARGE