googled06bb313055e587a.html Rock N Roll Rehab for the Control Of Rock and Roll Starring Greg Piper and The Tooners: Charles Swenson Art Show Today

Charles Swenson Art Show Today

The guy who actually dared to hired me all those years ago at Murakami-Wolf Films, Charles Swenson is part of a show at HaleARTS in Venice on Aug. 9 with Jerry Shevick and Phyllis Stuart. About eight of his Flying Sidecars series will be shown at HaleArt, 2443 Main St., in Venice. Opening Friday night this August 9th, 5:00 to 8:00.

I think that's today.


But many, many days ago... It was a hot summer in the West San Fernando Valley, in fact, it was as west as you can get in the San Fernando Valley, the town of Woodland Hills. I had been driving around the Valley all day on job interviews in a '73 Dodge Duster that didn't have air conditioning. I got home around three in the afternoon and decided it was still early enough to at least call a studio to see if I could arrange an interview. The place I wanted to work most was Murakami-Wolf Films since I saw a TV special titled "Who's Afraid Of Murakami-Wolf? (1972)", so I called them.

To my surprise Chuck Swenson answered my call. I don't actually remember if he answered the phone or if the receptionist put him through but I knew he was one of the guys in charge and not just another production assistant without the power to hire. I reminded him I had called before (regularly as the Employment Development Department required of those receiving Unemployment Insurance checks), and he told me that they we not hiring in the immediate future but that he'd be at the studio until five if I wanted to bring down my portfolio and interview. Since I had just come home and was tired and soaking wet from sweating like a pig in the car and imagining how long it would take to get to Hollywood from Woodland Hills after three o'clock, if I could even make it there before five, and then I'd hit the rush hour drive from Hollywood all the way home, with no air conditioning...
     "Or", he said calmly and matter of factly,"you could go F* yourself."

Right then I knew that was just the place I wanted to work. Actually, I already knew that but now it was confirmed. I drove down right away, showed Chuck the slides of my work, he introduced me to Fred Wolf who complimented my slides and told me they weren't hiring.

Eventually they were hiring and just a day or two after I called Chuck (in desperation and frustration) and calmly claimed I had come into a great deal of money and was no longer interested in employment in the Animation Industry, however, I do love animation so if they ever needed someone to help out in a pinch please feel free to call me," he laughed, Murakami-Wolf hired me as a Key Assistant Animator on the movie The Extraordinary Adventures of the Mouse & his Child.

I'm planning to go to Venice later and see his show. I've visited him at his studio at the old Brewery building in L.A. At least these days my car has air conditioning.



* He didn't say F, he said the whole word.

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