SF cartoon museum concedes to eviction, looks to future 

click to enlarge A man walks outside of the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, Wednesday, April 22, 2015. The Cartoon Art Museum will be leaving its home in downtown San Francisco at the end of June, but staff doesn't know where it will go next. - AP PHOTO/JEFF CHIU
  • AP Photo/Jeff Chiu
  • A man walks outside of the Cartoon Art Museum in San Francisco, Wednesday, April 22, 2015. The Cartoon Art Museum will be leaving its home in downtown San Francisco at the end of June, but staff doesn't know where it will go next.
There’s nothing funny about the uncertain transition of the Cartoon Art Museum. The San Francisco facility bills itself as the only museum in the West dedicated to preserving and sharing “cartoon art in all its forms.”

Over the past 30 years, it has exhibited editorial cartoons, comic books, graphic novels, anime, Sunday funnies, Saturday morning cartoons and other works. It also boasts a research library and a 7,000-piece permanent collection.

But the museum faces a sad tale: Monthly rent has doubled in its South of Market space. It is forced to find a new permanent home in the next two months.

“We’ve been through this before with the dot-com boom. This time it’s called the tech boom,” curator Andrew Farago said. “We do have a plan of attack, which is we are packing up and going to put things in storage during the transition period.”

Doors close June 28 at its Mission Street location.

Farago said the museum doesn’t want to leave San Francisco but might have no choice.

“We are keeping our options open,” he said. “The San Francisco 49ers are in Santa Clara. When something like that can happen, you can’t really rule anything out.”

In May, the facility will take part in the inaugural San Francisco Comics Fest with an event celebrating San Francisco’s underground comix movement. It also will host an evening of stand-up comedy and the Queer Comics Expo.

The museum’s final exhibition will showcase artwork from Jeffrey Brown’s popular series of “Star Wars” books.

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