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The Ethical Method of Repair
The Attention is in the Details
Not Straw, Not Sticks, Not Brick -
The Three Pigs get a New House
the Lost and FOUND series
RON BARBAGALLO is the director of ANIMATION ART CONSERVATION, a conservation practice devoted to the ethical repair and preservation of classic animation art. Barbagallo has a firm understanding of the paint technique, color styling and the precise chemistry of the materials used in producing animation art from the classics of the 1920’s to present day. He has pioneered the mending and re-adhering of the original fractured opaqued paint layer to its original animation cel sheet. His techniques allow him to repair the art without having to resort to repainting with new paint. Barbagallo has conducted humidity and temperature tests on tri-acetate on the complete line of Cartoon Colour paints. He maintains an active archive of every character color he has worked on and has compiled a visual guide to the seals, certificates and ink stamps which identify authentic Walt Disney Production and limited edition art.
His company, ANIMATION ART CONSERVATION, has a client list which includes the Walt Disney Company, Warner Bros., Nickelodeon, Hanna-Barbera, Christie’s East, Linda Jones Enterprises, United Productions of America (UPA), museums, galleries and private collectors worldwide and the personal collections of Stephen Ison and Roy E. Disney. His work in conservation has included preserving and archiving major collections of animation art, as well as having conducted the first comprehensive study for the preservation of the puppets created for Nightmare Before Christmas, James and the Giant Peach and Tim Burton's Corpse Bride. Barbagallo has handled the conservation of the Mary Grandpre pastels created for all the Harry Potter films and the preservation of the animation artifacts that survived the attacks on the World Trade Center on 9/11.
One of this country's leading authorities on the materials used in animation art production and their deterioration, Barbagallo addressed an international assembly at the Winter meeting of The American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works at The National Gallery of Art in Washington D.C. on March 4th, 1995. His talk was entitled “Mickey, Donald, Goofy & Pluto - What’s Breaking Up That Old Gang Of Mine?” In addition, since 1995, Barbagallo has written regularly about the artists and business people working in animation.
After 28 years preserving painted plastics, Ron Barbagallo decided to gather the thousands of color samples he's matched, his lengthy reports of his preservation treatments, his extensive image archive of the art he's handled and the data done by Conservation Scientist Michele Derrick and assemble all of it into one place by creating - The Research Library at Animation Art Conservation.
One of the first initiatives of THE RESEARCH LIBRARY at ANIMATION ART CONSERVATION was the formation of the Lost and FOUND series. Its first effort was the Online publication of Barbagallo’s interview given by animation film director Chuck Jones. This was the final print interview Jones gave. The second item heralding from the Lost and FOUND series was a lecture held at Chapman University on December 1, 2015. This lecture unveiled a lost collection of Salvador Dalí art and a Film Animatic that represents the version of Destino that Salvador Dalí intended to make. The coverage of: Salvador Dalí's Destino: Lost, Found and RESTORED to Dalí's original intent went viral all over the Internet and in print publications globally. This lecture was expanded and retitled: Destino, And The Fate of Assembling Plastic Truths Into A Greater Whole. Seven newly discovered story sketches were added to the restored Destino Animatic and the entire film was presented in full color. This version of Destino was presented in a class at Padova University in Padua, Italy in July of 2017.
Before working as a conservator, Barbagallo worked as an illustrator. He designed and illustrated artwork for Pocket Books, Washington Square Press, Fortune Magazine, Penthouse International, Readers’ Digest, Deutsch Advertising in NYC and was chosen by CBS Records to update the logo design for The Wizard of Oz 50th Anniversary Soundtrack. Some of his book cover illustrations were done for novels by Isaac Asimov and Tama Janowitz. Barbagallo’s paintings have been exhibited in the United States and Japan.
He studied both animation and painting at the School of Visual Arts in New York City, where he received his B.F.A. in 1981 and two of S.V.A.’s highest achievements: The Roy Lichtenstein Award and The Rhodes Family Award. While just a freshman, one of his first paintings, “Snow White at the Wishing Well,” was exhibited at the Allied Artists of America 65th Annual Exhibit at the National Academy Gallery in Manhattan. This exhibit was recorded in the archives of the Smithsonian Institution.
In addition to his work in art preservation, in 2012 Ron Barbagallo founded the FOUND in LOS ANGELES project, extrapolating and continuing the Fine Art Photography he used to do with his twin sister Lori. Ron Barbagallo's Fine Art Photography has been exhibited at the ArcLight Hollywood in May/June 2014 and at Photo Independent in May of 2015. On June 24, 2018, RED MAPLE from the FOUND in LOS ANGELES project was featured Daniel MIller to be part of YOURDAILYEMAIL. To learn more about the FOUND in LOS ANGELES project and to see examples of his Fine Art, look to the FOUND in LOS ANGELES project website.