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Nevada cartoonist’s art needs help

April 24, 2009

Drawing by Lute Pease

Drawing by Lute Pease

From the Reno News Review, by Dennis Myers – April 23 2009

Jefferson High School in Portland, Ore., was built in 1909, and recently a clean up of its storage room turned up several dozen pieces of art, many of them by New Deal-era artists like Otis Oldfield and Elinor Stone.

Also found were the originals of 19 cartoons by Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonist Lucius “Lute” Pease, who was born in Winnemucca, Nevada 140 years ago, on March 27, 1869.

Pease was a cartoonist for the Oregonian in Portland, editor of the Pacific Monthly (a literary publication), and cartoonist for the Newark (N.J.) News.

His 1948 Pulitzer reportedly made him the oldest person to that time—80 years old—to win the coveted journalism award, though that has not been confirmed.

Jefferson High is trying to raise $27,000 for restoration and protection of the artworks.

In Pease’s case, that may involve treating the paper on which the cartoons were drawn if it turns out to be acid based paper. About $5,000 has been raised so far.

One of the Pease cartoons in the Jefferson High cache touches on Britain and Germany fighting to control Iraq’s oil supply, with Hitler shown as the German figure.

The adjoining cartoon, not among the Jefferson group, shows the style of Pease’s work.

Contributions can be sent to Jefferson Artworks at Jefferson High School 5210 No. Kerby Ave, Portland, OR 97217. Information on the project, including scans of two of the cartoons, is posted at https://jeffersonart.wordpress.com/lute-pease-drawings/

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