In the hands of giants such as famed composer Stephen Sondheim, legendary writer John Steinbeck, jazz great Duke Ellington, Oscar-winning animation director Chuck Jones and others, Blackwing pencils helped create many timeless works of art. In celebration of this legacy, California Cedar Products, Palomino Blackwing and the Art Directors Club launched The Blackwing Experience, a week of interactive exhibits and events incorporating art and music.
The Blackwing Experience exhibit and party will include homages to the famed pencil from contemporary artists, works from the Chuck Jones Center of Creativity, artisanal pencil sharpening, antique pencil memorabilia, opportunities for attendees to create their own works, music by Christian Tamburr and Dominick Farinacci, art curated by BIPOLART, live projection drawing by Shantell Martin, photography by Guest of a Guest and more.
The original Blackwing 602 featured a lead so soft that some said it felt like butter. From its unique replaceable eraser and ferrule to its famous tagline "Half the Pressure, Twice the Speed," Blackwings were the pencil of choice for a generation of visual artists, composers and writers, and beloved by many of the greatest creative minds.
In 1998, however, production ceased and the prized Blackwings were known to go for up to $40 each on eBay. Due to the persistence of a passionate fan base, California Cedar Products reintroduced the Blackwing in 2010, with a second version released in 2011.
The updated versions include the Palomino Blackwing, with a smooth and expressive line perfectly suited for visual artists, and the Palomino Blackwing 602, with a slightly firmer graphite formulation more closely modeled after the original and preferred by wordsmiths and everyday users.
The event is free and open to the public, reservations required.