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Children & Youth

Seibold Serial #2: On his creative process using digital software

We're going serial with J. Otto Seibold and Mr. Lunch! For the remaining weeks of the exhibition, we're releasing video interviews with the artist, everything from his favorite object in the exhibition to that special exhibition introduction by Matt Groening. Stay tuned!

For our second #SeiboldSerial, artist and illustrator J. Otto Seibold lets us in on his creative process using digital software.

#SeiboldSerial is a weekly video series in conjunction with J. Otto Seibold and Mr. Lunch, on view Nov 20, 2014–Mar 8, 2015 at The CJM.


about the artist
J. Otto Seibold

J. Otto Seibold (b. 1960) is a self-taught artist who was born in Oakland, California, and grew up an apricots-throw away from the John Muir home in Martinez, CA. He was able to sneak into the art world during the “outsider artist” craze of the 1990s and is the first person to use digital software to create children’s books with Mr. Lunch Takes a Plane Ride (1993). Seibold has continued publishing for the past twenty years and is best known for the Mr. Lunchseries, as well as Olive the Other Reindeer (Chronicle Books, 1997), and Vunce Upon a Time (Chronicle Books, 2008).

Also a widely exhibited artist, he has shown work in galleries and museums including Deitch Projects, New York; Paule Anglim, San Francisco; Grass Hut, Portland, OR; MASS MoCA, Adams, MA; and Creative Time’s 42nd Street Art Project. In 2000, Seibold had a solo museum exhibition at the Yerba Buena Center for the Arts in San Francisco.

Seibold’s bio on the dust jacket of Free Lunch, however, is perhaps simpler: J. Otto draws all the time. It’s his job. He is a professional.


Leadership Support for digital media at The Contemporary Jewish Museum is generously provided by the Jim Joseph Foundation.

J. Otto Seibold and Mr. Lunch is organized by The Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco, and is based on three books by J. Otto Seibold and Vivian Walsh: Mr. Lunch Borrows a Canoe, Free Lunch, and Mr. Lunch Takes a Plane Ride. Supporting sponsorship is provided by the Mimi and Peter Haas Fund.

Additional support of this exhibition and education programs at The CJM is provided with thanks to proceeds from the Sixth Annual Family Gala: Mr. Lunch Throws a Party. Major sponsors include Anonymous, Yamileé Bermingham and Douglas Winthrop, the Felson Family, Sam Hamilton and Jen Chaiken and Donald and Carole Chaiken Foundation, Debbie and Scott Kay, Nellie and Max Levchin, Shana Nelson Middler and David Middler, Alison Gelb Pincus and Mark Pincus, Leesa and Martin Romo, Christine Russell and Mark Schlesinger, Roselyne Chroman Swig, and Wendy and Richard Yanowitch.

Major support for The Contemporary Jewish Museum’s exhibitions and Jewish Peoplehood Programs comes from the Koret Foundation.

Image Credit

Header image: J. Otto Seibold, Detail from "Applause" in Mr. Lunch Takes a Plane Ride, by J. Otto Seibold and Vivian Walsh, 1993. Vector illustration, dimensions variable. J. Otto Seibold and Mr. Lunch. On view November 20, 2014–March 8, 2015. The Contemporary Jewish Museum, San Francisco.