Animation was much more than making money to Clokey. It took him seven years before he decided to merchandise Gumby because he didn’t want parents to think he was trying to exploit their children. Gumby stood for something - he cared about people and was a role model, and the idea that children would have a Gumby doll to inspire good ethics was why they made the dolls in the first place.
Gumby is layered with deep mysticism and symbols. It was so much more than a TV show. As Art Clokey put it, Gumby was an act of love.
“Entertainment should leave you feeling good and sometimes inspired.” - Art Clokey