(Topic ID: 190693)

Pointy People Pin Ponderings - Homage to Marche and Kelley

By Pecos

7 years ago


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“Do you like or dislike Pointy People themed pinball machines?”

  • I like Pointy People! 64 votes
    86%
  • I couldn't care less. 3 votes
    4%
  • I dislike Pointy People. 7 votes
    9%

(74 votes)

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There are 168 posts in this topic. You are on page 1 of 4.
12
#1 7 years ago

My first and favorite pinball, OXO, had Pointy People all over it. There were Pointy People on the backglass. There were Pointy People on the playfield. They couldn't be avoided! They were everywhere! I've always liked OXO's Pointy People artwork. It seemed to glow in neon pink, green and blue colors. As I got more into pinball, I realized that there were a lot of Pointy People Pins out there. And then I learned that it was Christian Marche who was known for his Pointy People artwork.

Pointy People art seems to generate strong feelings in the eye of the beholder. Some people love it. Some people hate it. If art is supposed to generate feelings then Christian Marche is successful at generating that. He created Pointy People art in the late 1960s and early 1970s and his Pointy People artwork has become iconic of this period of EM pinball machines. I like the pure joy shown my the man on the backglass of OXO jumping for joy when collecting three 'Os.' Such exuberance is contagious!

Christian Marche is THE Pointy People artist. I wondered if there were others. And then, when researching the topic, I discovered that Bally Capersville has Pointy People and the art was done by Jerry Kelly. And that wasn't the only Pointy People art I found from Jerry Kelly.

IPDB shows Jerry Kelley as artist on 16 pinball machines. Christian Marche is credited for an astounding 149 pins per IPDB, but not all of those are Pointy People Pins.

Do you love or hate Pointy People art? All viewpoints are welcome. If you dislike the art, beware! Pointy People grow on you!

Would you like to see a Pointy People Pin today or should they remain iconic relics of the baby boomers youth, never to be seen again?

I have these three Pointy People Pins:

Williams Strike Zone 1970:

day_1_backglass (resized).jpgday_1_backglass (resized).jpg

Bally Double-Up 1970:

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Williams OXO 1973:

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I would like to say that OXO was the 'Pointiest' of the Pointy People Pins but I would have to give that honor to Williams A-Go-Go 1966 and that art was done by Jerry Kelley.

Please discuss and post your Pointy People Pins here!

#2 7 years ago

Like them or not, Marche's and Kelley's pointy people appeared on some of the best playing EM games from the 60s. One of the most beloved games in my collection is Pit Stop. I just got an A Go Go up and running too, and when it is all lit up the artwork is stunning.

PitStop (resized).jpgPitStop (resized).jpg

#3 7 years ago

You left out the ultimate pointy-people pin - WMS GULFSTREAM - I'm with ya man, love me some pointy-people art, always have... probably because Williams pins in the early 70s were flooding the area where I began my pinball playing pastime.

BTW, I think Jerry started prior to Christian if I'm not mistaken... if you ever decide to part ways with your double up, Id be interested in it.

#4 7 years ago

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#5 7 years ago

Nice points!

#6 7 years ago

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#7 7 years ago

One of my favorite backglasses done by Christian Marche isn't all that pointy at all.

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#8 7 years ago

I think my first pointy people was my Zip-A-Doo (sorry I don't have a pic off hand).

I get it home and the girlfriend has 2 things to say...."I like the colors" ... "what's with the people drawn all weird".

She obviously isn't the pointy fan of the house. Lol.

#9 7 years ago

My Marche art machine isn't pointy, just got creepy perv dudes.

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#10 7 years ago
Quoted from Travish:

My Marche art machine isn't pointy, just got creepy perv dudes.

What the....why does it look like that dude is trying to cover HIS chest? Lol

#11 7 years ago

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#12 7 years ago

Pointy people rock!

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(Not mine, but I wish it was!)

#13 7 years ago
Quoted from pacmanretro:

What the....why does it look like that dude is trying to cover HIS chest? Lol

Third nipple maybe?

#14 7 years ago
Quoted from Travish:

My Marche art machine isn't pointy, just got creepy perv dudes.

Then again, the girl next to "GIN" might be the perv...what exactly is her hand holding?

#15 7 years ago

Pointy guy on Boomerang

IMG_0047 (resized).JPGIMG_0047 (resized).JPG

#16 7 years ago

Hi-Score Pool art by Christian Marche. I really love where the pool player with the blue/white shirt seems to be looking.

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#17 7 years ago
Quoted from schudel5:

Hi-Score Pool art by Christian Marche. I really love where the pool player with the blue/white shirt seems to be looking.

I seem to remember Travish posting a "similar picture" rather recently

Out of respect to him, I won't point out which pic I was thinking of

#18 7 years ago

Expressway has pointy people and one of them even has arrows for his pupils.

rps20170605_225513 (resized).jpgrps20170605_225513 (resized).jpg

#19 7 years ago
Quoted from pacmanretro:

I seem to remember Travish posting a "similar picture" rather recently
Out of respect to him, I won't point out which pic I was thinking of

I think I remember that one.

There was one more (let's close this thread down)but it got pulled. At least I didn't get my hand slapped.

#20 7 years ago
Quoted from embryonjohn:

[Pic of Old Chicago plastic of pointy lady in a champagne glass]

I knew that was going to happen on a Pointy People thread! It was inevitable. Ha ha! But I was thinking that it would be a pic of the backglass of Old Chicago. I have Old Chicago so I guess that would be my fourth Pointy People Pin.

Thanks everyone for the pics!

5 months later
#21 6 years ago

Another Pointy People Pin has made its way into Pecos' Palatial Pinball Parlour. Nice art package on this. No Pointy People on the backglass. They are right in your face on the lower playfield.

Sadly, this one won't be staying long. It is spoken for.

after_backbox_and_backglass (resized).jpgafter_backbox_and_backglass (resized).jpg

after_playfield_full (resized).jpgafter_playfield_full (resized).jpg

This is my most thorough restoration to date.

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http://pecospinball.com/klondike_restoration.shtml

1 month later
#22 6 years ago

I had some conversation with Jerry K Kelley in 2000 shortly before he died. He called his style 'the contemporary artwork' and he did lots of different stuff for the whole amusement industry, one of his first big hits was a new slot-machine-cabinet for Bally which was an immense success.
Then he designed shuffle-alleys and cabinet-artwork for Williams-games like Jumpin' Jack's. The sharp-edged W-Logo for Williams in 1962 was also his idea.

The first pinball featuring the new contemporary artwork was Pot-o-Gold in 1965 and then came A-Go-Go which was a massive hit selling over 5,000 units which was very huge at the time (remember that Pinball was forbidden in most parts of the USA then) and after that he designed Beat Time for Williams.
After this he was asked to work for Bally and this is the point when Christian Marche takes over.

His first pinball-design ever was Shangri-La (already in 1965) and he was asked by Williams to copy the style of JKK.
His first pointy-people-artwork was Jolly Roger in 1966.
Christian Marche was a frenchman who came to the USA in 1964, and he also brought another frenchman, Louis Raynaud, into the industry.

As far as I could 'read between the lines' from JKK's words he did not like it to be copied, there was -for example- a time when it was widely believed that JKK did Mariner (which was impossible because he left the industry in 1969) and he told me (in 2000 when the internet still was young) to make everyone I know clear that he did not make Mariner, which he considered being a bad design.

Christian Marche instead seemed to have big respect for JKK because when you look at 1974's CHAMP you will spot Kelley-designs over and over. Maybe this was Christian Marche's 'tip to the hat' regarding JKK because in the same year Christian Marche did Star Pool, the last pointy-pinball-artwork ever.
In late 1978 he left the industry and the USA because his family in France wanted him to return.

Me personally I hate it how Christian Marche is treated by a lot of Pinsiders. People who bash him have no idea that he was exactly the right man at the right time. Plus he was very good friends with Gottlieb-Man Gordon Morison who also left the industry in 1979. They shared the same office and went along great. Sometimes I think it's the same way like Roger Moore gets bashed by modern-day-James Bond-Fans. They can't understand that it was a totally different (and I think much much better) time back then. And both Christian Marche and Roger Moore were perfect.

#23 6 years ago

There is no official statement regarding this point, maybe someone should ask Dave Christensen himself.

So I ask all of YOU Pointy-People-Fans, what do YOU think?

Look at this never produced Bally prototype with a copyright from 1980.
It's well known that Christian Marche was very much liked by pretty everyone in the industry - and it is my honest opinion that Dave Christensen did this as a farewell-greeting to Christian Marche, depicting him on this backglass - compare the 2 pictures please (the photo of Christian Marche is from the book PINBALL ART)

La Vie Parisienne.jpgLa Vie Parisienne.jpg
Christian Marche.jpgChristian Marche.jpg

#24 6 years ago
Quoted from Mardi-Gras-Man:

There is no official statement regarding this point, maybe someone should ask Dave Christensen himself.
So I ask all of YOU Pointy-People-Fans, what do YOU think?
Look at this never produced Bally prototype with a copyright from 1980.
It's well known that Christian Marche was very much liked by pretty everyone in the industry - and it is my honest opinion that Dave Christensen did this as a farewell-greeting to Christian Marche, depicting him on this backglass - compare the 2 pictures please (the photo of Christian Marche is from the book PINBALL ART)

#25 6 years ago
Quoted from Mardi-Gras-Man:

and he also brought another frenchman, Louis Raynaud, into the industry.

What do you know about Mr. Raynaud?
What backglass art is he responsible for?

#26 6 years ago
Quoted from Mardi-Gras-Man:

So I ask all of YOU Pointy-People-Fans, what do YOU think?

Look at this never produced Bally prototype with a copyright from 1980.
It's well known that Christian Marche was very much liked by pretty everyone in the industry - and it is my honest opinion that Dave Christensen did this as a farewell-greeting to Christian Marche, depicting him on this backglass - compare the 2 pictures please (the photo of Christian Marche is from the book PINBALL ART)

It looks like Christian Marche to me. And the backglass is a French theme with a French woman, Ooh La la! , wearing the blue/white/red colors of the French flag.

Thanks Mardi-Gras-Man for posting that information. I didn't know until I started this thread and did some research that Christian Marche was following in the footsteps of Jerry Kelley. I always thought OXO to be the 'best' example of Pointy People art, but A-Go-Go is just as deserving of that honor.

#27 6 years ago

Every now and then some paintings from Christian Marche appear in art-auctions.
Here are some examples.

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4 years later
#28 2 years ago

I just found 2 more paintigs from Christian Marche ...

And please, to all of you pointy-people-haters ... We know by now that you hate Mr Marche, so please leave him alone and spare your nasty comments, thanks a lot.

C-violons-fleurs (resized).jpgC-violons-fleurs (resized).jpgMoulin-Rouge (resized).jpgMoulin-Rouge (resized).jpg
1 month later
#29 1 year ago

There is an ongoing curated exhibition on the Pointy People at the Pacific Pinball Museum:

https://www.pacificpinball.org/exhibition/pointy-people

Some of us like the "modernist" era!

I'm hard at work trying to acquire an A-Go-Go.

#30 1 year ago
Quoted from OldHockeyGuy:

There is an ongoing curated exhibition on the Pointy People at the Pacific Pinball Museum:
https://www.pacificpinball.org/exhibition/pointy-people
Some of us like the "modernist" era!
I'm hard at work trying to acquire an A-Go-Go.

An A-GO-GO ?
That's one of the very few things in which being in Germany is better than in my dreamland USA - those 60ies Four-Players are very easy to get over here... but shipping to the states is horribly expensive, and it gets even worse year after year.

7 months later
#31 1 year ago

Never hurts to mention an interest in pinball. A guy who works my hockey rink had two childhood games his parents wanted to sell. One of the games is Gulfstream. What a great assortment of angular people having fun. The machine just exudes color, light and fun. Even its cabinet has pointy people.

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#32 1 year ago

Thank you Mardi-Gras-Man for sharing your information about JKK and the Marche paintings. I have wondered how Kelley felt about Marche running with the style, after all it is thought that art is imitation and imitation is the most sincere form of flattery... I doubt Kelley was very flattered at the time!!

I have a special Doozie that I plan on restoring as well as I can, my father brought it home 30 years ago. While it isn't a very popular machine the closing flipper action and pointy people shows Williams "inspired by" both Bally and Kelley at the same time! HA!

#33 1 year ago

Gulfstream is a beaut. Pointy people remain my absolute favorite style of pinball art. Can't believe I've never owned one of these games. Someday!

#34 1 year ago

Love my Gulfstream. Have a repro backglass on order from BGresto so I can represent the game with pride. Everything else has been fully restored inside and out. Cabinet paint is all original.

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#35 1 year ago
Quoted from MrVern:

I have wondered how Kelley felt about Marche running with the style, after all it is thought that art is imitation and imitation is the most sincere form of flattery... I doubt Kelley was very flattered at the time!!

The one time that Jerry Kelley was on stage at Pinball Expo, he expressed disdain for "other artists" imitating him. Though he didn't name Marche (IIRC), it was clear that Marche was the main target. He also did not like people thinking of him as a "pointy people" artist. (Of course, one can find pointy joints on his backglasses. https://www.ipdb.org/showpic.pl?id=27&picno=30077) He preferred to consider himself a cubist, and thought of himself as very much an artistic innovator.
.................David Marston

#36 1 year ago

Thank you Mardi-Gras-Man for the great background information! I’m a fan of Christian Marche and his work - love those paintings too. Blake, that’s a beautiful Gulfsteam! I hope to find one for sale near me.

#37 1 year ago
Quoted from tandem2:

Blake, that’s a beautiful Gulfsteam! I hope to find one for sale near me.

Thanks! It was a full blown project upon picking up. Had been in a garage for 20 years. Playfield had some rough spots that got touched up. Anything metal on the topside was rusted from mouse piss and mechs/switches/steppers were locked, gummed up or broken. Overall it came out beautifully. And plays fast. I can't wait to receive the new back glass as it will really make it pop.

Restoration thread here : https://pinside.com/pinball/forum/topic/1973-williams-gulfstream-restoration

#38 1 year ago

I’ve looked at your restoration thread periodically, what a ton of work, but well worth it! Thanks for taking all the time to share this excellent work!

1 month later
#39 1 year ago

Found a warm, informative, and fun article on the artwork of Jerry Kelley titled "Art moderne et flipper : les jeux dessinés par Jerry Kelley" found in the French site, FlipJuke. I used Google Translate, a tedious process due to character limitations, but it was worth it, and pasted it together on Microsoft Word. I wish the article had included research citations and images, but I'm grateful for what I found.

The article came up for me at: https://www.flipjuke.fr/viewtopic.php?f=31&t=4668

For fans of Kelley and Marche following this thread, it is good reading.

6 months later
#40 7 months ago

Here are some more paintings from Christian Marche ... finally he's called "the Pinball-Artist" which surely is a good thing - some decades ago this would not neccessary have been a compliment in "art-circles" I guess.

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#41 7 months ago

And here some pictures of Jerry K Kelley who gave me the great honor to have some conversations with him in 2000.
His "breakthrough" in the Coin-Machine-Industry was this new-style-cabinet for the "one-armed-Bandits" which was so succesful that most manufacturers copied it.
Many Pinball-Collectors don't give him the respect that he deserves and describe him (in most cases disrespectful) as "the pointy-people-artist" not knowing that he was an allround-designer and not just an artist.
He also did work on Juke-Boxes, Shuffle-Alley-Cabinets with tubular Legs, designed the new cabinets for Williams in 1960/1961, the Lowcharger-Cabinet from 1965/66 and the new Cabinet from 1967 (produced until the early 80ies) including front-doors and everything ... the complete Bally-Cabinets from 1963 and the new one from 1967 with the lift-up-frame, including the nylon-Flipper-Buttons, black Frontdoor and black legs.
He also designed for example the fabulous pointy Williams "W" and the pointy "Jongleur" for the Bally-Aprons (1969 to 1979)
So everyone who dislikes him and his Machines think twice - everytime you're glad to look at your Medieval Madness and adore the "W" - that's Jerry K Kelley too!

I'm not into Juke-Boxes and I haven't asked him about that, but this 1959-model, especially that "Stereo", looks a lot like his style.

jkelley (resized).jpgjkelley (resized).jpgJKK (resized).jpgJKK (resized).jpg
W. (resized).jpgW. (resized).jpgjkelley. (resized).jpgjkelley. (resized).jpgShuffle (resized).jpgShuffle (resized).jpgW (resized).jpgW (resized).jpgrock-ola (resized).pngrock-ola (resized).png

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#42 7 months ago

Did you get a chance to see the JKK exhibit at the PPM?
Mike Shiess dedicated an entire room of the museum to him, lots of games, artwork and educational info, they did a great job, was very informative and fun.
They did the same for Art Stenholm, not sure who is up next.
B

#43 7 months ago

I started working at distributor early 80s shopping out old em's never really liked the art, ss games were new. Now respect the pointy art.

#44 7 months ago

This was posted just a few days ago in another general EM-Toppic but since it contains some interesting Info regarding Jerry K Kelley I guess it should be shown in THIS Toppic because that's where it belongs.

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#45 7 months ago

What's going on with Bally's CHAMP is also very interesting.
This machine with artwork by Christian Marche features 3 Kelley-Machines - RockMakers, Joker and Minizag.

One could debate if the 2nd machine from the right is JOKER or not, but as for me I'm sure. An "old" friend, Jürgen Lukas, who wrote the book "Flipperscheiben" in the 90ies (together with Heribert Eiden) thinks so too - in fact he's the one who recognized it first. Surely, the Backglass-Artwork is mirrored but you can clearly see the 3 arms of this fun-fair-machine and we found no other machine that matches that. And surely, the Cabinet-Artwork is not the original Joker-Artwork, but since Joker never was an "official" Bally-Release it's quite possible that Christian Marche had no picture in his hands and just drew that what he remembered...

Champ on the Backlass very left, that's obvious, the 2nd machine reminds a bit on Marche's ON BEAM but the Letters " DE" seem to make no sense - maybe these are the Initials of his Girlfriend, like Gordon Morison did too. I still got no idea regarding the machine on the far right.

Anyway it's very interesting that Marche pictured 3 Kelley-Machines and especially RockMakers and Joker side-by-side ... because these are the 2 machines featuring the Bally-Executive who disliked Kelley and vice-versa.

It's also strange that all pictured machines still have the black 1967-1971-Frontdoor (which was a Kelley-Design too) and not the new 1972-Frontdoor (introduced with Fireball) ... this could only mean that 1) the artwork for Champ was already done before 1972 or 2) that Marche did this on purpose as some kind of hommage to Kelley because he thought that this type of Cabinet with the lift-up-Frame, which also was a Kelley-Design (introduced with THE WIGGLER and the SAFARI-Serial-run in mid-1967) should be shown with the original front-door too.

Champ surprisingly also was the last Bally-Machine featuring the "Lift-Up-Frame" and the wide Pedestal using the slightly shorter 71cm-Legs ... the next model had the all-new Bally-Cabinet with larger Backbox and larger Legs equal to Williams (73cm).

Plus maybe the first Champ-Backglasses seem to have an all-black surrounding area for the counters - just like some Kelley-Machines (A-Go-Go and Capersville for example) ... the serial-Glasses had white areas anyway.

Maybe all of this happened accidentally, maybe not - who knows. And it's even more curious when you keep in mind that JKK did not like CM's artwork. In 2000 there was still widely believed that Mariner was a JKK-Design. He wasn't pleased at all with that and asked me telling all Pinheads that I know Mariner wasn't his design!
CHAMP 1 (resized).jpgCHAMP 1 (resized).jpgCHAMP 2 (resized).jpgCHAMP 2 (resized).jpg

#46 7 months ago

This is the pale "Wiggler-Woman" ... she was depicted on 6 Kelley-Machines. Her Haircolor was changed for RockMakers.

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12
#47 7 months ago

It's funny how fast you can make a friend or an enemy by professing love for pointy people. We love 'em so much we added a life-size pointy mannequin to Sea Ray's corner of the basement:

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#48 7 months ago

Anyone here have a Kelley era coin door? And is the term "harlequin" the right term for Mr. Kelly's cabinet design?

#49 7 months ago
Quoted from Garrett:

Anyone here have a Kelley era coin door? And is the term "harlequin" the right term for Mr. Kelly's cabinet design?

"Harlequin" is the figure he designed for the Bally-Aprons for 1969 and this figure was used until early 1980.
He designed several Cabinets, but why should they be called "Harlequin" ? The 1965/66 Cabinet was called "the Lowcharger" and the 1960/61 Williams-Cabinet was called "the styling of the 60ies"

Which coin-door do you mean? There were 4 - the grey Bally without illumination from 1965 to mid 1967, the new black one with illumination from mid-1967 until late 1971 and from Williams the "Cyclope-Type" for the Lowcharger-Cabinets and the new, classic Williams-door from late 1966 until the early 80ies...
Kelley-Frontdoors (resized).jpgKelley-Frontdoors (resized).jpg

#50 7 months ago
Quoted from Mardi-Gras-Man:

"Harlequin" is the figure he designed for the Bally-Aprons for 1969 and this figure was used until early 1980.
He designed several Cabinets, but why should they be called "Harlequin" ? The 1965/66 Cabinet was called "the Lowcharger" and the 1960/61 Williams-Cabinet was called "the styling of the 60ies"
Which coin-door do you mean? There were 4 - the grey Bally without illumination from 1965 to mid 1967, the new black one with illumination from mid-1967 until late 1971 and from Williams the "Cyclope-Type" for the Lowcharger-Cabinets and the new, classic Williams-door from late 1966 until the early 80ies...
[quoted image]

Appreciate the information!

The 67-71 door is what I’m in need of for Rockmakers restoration.

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