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Good Grief! In Conversation: Jean Schulz & Artist Andy Holden

Thu 25 Oct 2018
19.00 - 20.30
£10.00 / £8.00 concessions
Screening Room
South Wing

In celebration of the life and legacy of Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz, his widow Jean Schulz joins us to share her personal insights into the mind behind the modest maker, alongside exhibiting Artist and Peanuts fanatic Andy Holden.

In his lifetime Charles M.Schulz created and published 17,897 Peanuts comic strips, his widow Jean Schulz to whom he was married for 27 years, joins us from the U.S. for one night only to share her personal insights into the mind behind the modest maker and how his ‘little incidents’ became a societal movement of their own.

Alongside Jean exhibiting artist and Peanuts fanatic, Andy Holden, looks to reflect on the impact that Charles’ work has had on his own artworks and ways of working, inspiring paintings, 3D works and film pieces. Holden’s new film installation for the Good Grief. Charlie Brown! exhibition Oh! My friends there is no friend, 2014–18, examines friendship and how it is shaped by the media we consume. The film is comprised of four cells, echoing the layout of a Peanuts strip, linked by a voice-over provided by the artist, via a CGI bootleg of Charlie Brown.

Oh My Friends_Andy_Holden_filmstill_2018_2.jpg

Oh! My friends there is no friend, 2014–18, film still, Andy Holden
Oh! My friends there is no friend, 2014–18, film still, Andy Holden

Together the two unpick the underlying investigations of the original strips, drawing on their relevance both then and now. The line-up of child characters said to be the psyche of Charles Schulz himself take us on a journey through life’s questions, challenging society, politics, faith and much more. And while our loveable Peanuts offer no direct answers they ensue a strong sense of human rights and justice reassuring readers that their troubles are shared and therefore soothed through collective understanding.

Jean Schulz by Cesar Gallegos
Jean Schulz by Cesar Gallegos


Jean Forsyth Schulz is the widow of Peanuts comic strip creator, Charles M. Schulz; they married in 1973 in a small ceremony with his 5 children and her 2 children. She is the Founding Board President of the Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center and played a major role in its creation. Jean is a philanthropist and is also active on the board of Canine Companions for Independence. She lives an active life, holds a pilot's license, and finds time for regular tennis games and trapeze workouts.

The Charles M. Schulz Museum and Research Center opened in August 2002 to fulfill its mission of preserving, displaying, and interpreting the art of Charles M. Schulz. The Museum carries out this mission through changing exhibitions and programming that: build an understanding of cartoonists and cartoon art; illustrate the scope of Schulz’s multi-faceted career; communicate the stories, inspirations and influences of Charles Schulz; and celebrate the life of Charles Schulz and the Peanuts characters.

Andy Holden lives and works in Bedford, UK.  Recent solo exhibitions include Natural Selection, commissioned by Artangel, touring to Leeds Art Gallery, Towner Gallery Eastbourne and Inverleith House, Edinburgh, Laws of Motion in a Cartoon Landscape, Glasgow International and Future Generations Art Prize at Venice Biennale 2017, Towards a Unified Theory of MI!MS, Zabludowicz Collection, London (2013), Chewy Cosmos Thingly Time at Kettle’s Yard, Cambridge, UK (2011), Cookham Erratics, Benaki Museum, Athens (2011), Art Now: Andy Holden, Tate Britain, UK (2010). Group exhibitions include Art Now Live, Tate Britain (2011) and The Universal Addressability of Dumb Things (Curated by Mark Leckey), Hayward Touring, 2013. In 2010 he curated Be Glad For the Song Has No End ~ A Festival of Artist’s Music at Wysing Arts Centre, Cambridge, and in 2012 he adapted David Foster Wallace’s Brief Interview’s with Hideous Men for the stage at the ICA in London. He co-runs the record label Lost Toys Records, as well as performing regularly with his band The Grubby Mitts.