As regular readers know I am slavishly devoted to master animator Hayao Miyazaki and consider his movie My Neighbor Totoro which was released 20 years ago to be one of the greatest films ever made. Now Sayama Forest, also known as Totor Forest, which inspired Miyazaki to create the movie is the focus of an effort to save it from further destruction by developers.
In artistic terms this wood is the equivalent of Monet’s gardens at Giverny or Arles for van Gogh and Gaugin.
The Totoro Forest Project is the brainchild of Enrico Casarosa and Dice Tsutsumi and has not surprisingly received the enthusiastic support of Pixar.
I quote from Animation Magazine:
Artists from around the world were asked to come up with artwork inspired by the gentle creature depicted in the landmark movie. Over 200 original pieces from internationally acclaimed artists and animators—William Joyce, Andreas Deja, Timothy Lamb, Ronnie del Carmen, Ralph Eggleston, Pete Docter and Peter de Seve, to name a few—are featured in this one-of-a-kind event which tries to answer the question “What is your Totoro?” The auction will be held at Pixar Animation Studio on September 6th. A companion art book, edited by Karen Paik (The Story of Pixar), will also be available at the event. Selected artwork from the Totoro auction will be featured as two special exhibitions at The Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco (Exhibit A: Sept. 26-Dec. 7; Exhibit B: Nov. 6-Feb. 20).
The website is truly awesome: Totoro Forest Project.
Now to figure out how to get to San Francisco.