History & Mission

The ToonSeum, The Museum of Comics and Cartoon Art, was founded in 2007 as a single-hall gallery at the Children’s Museum of Pittsburgh. In 2009, it was relocated to its own dual-gallery facility in the heart of Downtown Pittsburgh’s Cultural District, where it became one of only three institutions in the United States dedicated to programming focused on the significance and cultural impact of the comic and cartoon arts.

Exhibitions during the ToonSeum’s tenure in the Cultural District covered the expanse of comics and cartoon history, and shone a spotlight on the artistry of regional and national creators. Themed workshops, life-drawing sessions, lectures and presentations allowed the public to explore their own hands-on experiences with cartooning. After a celebrated run, the Downtown galleries closed their doors in 2018.

The ToonSeum now operates throughout Pittsburgh’s many communities with an expanded mission: championing comics as a force for social good through education, while cultivating more inclusive audiences.

We seek to build a more diverse audience for the comic and cartoon arts through intentionally inclusive programming, outreach, fundraising, and partnerships. Pop-up exhibits, lectures, workshops, classes, and comic-book drop offs are among the events planned as we explore new ways of building public engagement with the comic and cartoon arts!

“…We will develop programming that reflects and includes more members of our community. More people of color, more women, more members of our LGBTQ communities, more families from neighborhoods across Pittsburgh, more students of all ages from more of our schools.” – Marcel Walker, Board President