Robert Grossman, Illustrator, Cartoonist Extraordinaire: 1940-2018; The Tilley Watch Online

Robert Grossman, Illustrator, Cartoonist Extraordinaire, 1940 – 2018

  Robert Grossman a multi-talented artist with an instantly recognizable style, has passed away. Mr. Grossman enjoyed a spectacular career as an illustrator and cartoonist with his work appearing on the cover of numerous major publications. For far more information please go to Drew Friedman’s 2013 piece about Mr. Grossman’s career. 

In the early 1960s Mr. Grossman worked briefly as an assistant to the New Yorker‘s Art Editor, James Geraghty. He contributed two cartoons in the Geraghty years: January 13, 1962 (seen above) and December 14, 1963. His work returned to the magazine in the Tina Brown years in the form of six comic strips; his last contribution ran under David Remnick’s editorship.

( Mr. Grossman’s Yale Record parody cover of the New Yorker appears at the top of this piece)


Trumpian cartoons were in the majority again this week in the Daily Cartoon slot:  a reflection on teachers & guns-in-the-classroom by Avi Steinberg, Stormy weather by Kim Warp, March Madness by Lars Kenseth, a tribute to Stephen Hawking by David Sipress (that was a ‘bonus” Daily), Trump & school walkouts was a team effort by Jason Chatfield and Scott Dooley.  The week ended with Ellis Rosen‘s nod to the nationwide closing of the Toys r Us chain. 

Contributing cartoonists appearing on Daily Shouts: Emma Hunsinger, Will McPhail, and Ben Schwartz.

All the work (and more) can be seen here.

Blitt’s 15th Trump NYer Cover; Brand New NYer Cartoons Rated by Cartoon Companion; Library of Congress’s “Drawn To Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists”; More Spills: Cartoonists to Unveil a Mural in Brooklyn, Reginald Marsh Diary Entries, An $800.00 Edition of The New Yorker Encyclopedia of Cartoons

Blitt’s 15th Trump New Yorker Cover

The New Yorker sometimes releases its next cover several days early. Today is one of those days. According to the magazine’s covers editor, this is Barry Blitt’s 15th Trump New Yorker cover. For more on Mr. Blitt and his cover, go here.


Brand New New Yorker Cartoons Rated by Cartoon Companion

If you’re looking for New Yorker cartoon dissection, this is the place for you.  “Max” & “Simon” take you through every cartoon in the latest New Yorker and assign each a rating of 1 – 6 (6 being the top). 


Library of Congress’s Drawn to Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists

This title is now available.  Read all about it here!


There’s a new mural in town: New Yorker cartoonists Corey Pandolph and Drew Dernavich will reveal the piece this Sunday at Crystal Lake Brooklyn at 647 Grand St.. The Unveiling Party, from 6 -9, is open to the public.


The Diary Review, has a short piece on Reginald Marsh.  Read it here.

Here’s Mr. Marsh’s entry on the A-Z:




Reginald Marsh (above) Born in Paris, March 14, 1898, died in 1954: New Yorker work: 1925 -1944. More information:


The Spill has been following information being released on the upcoming New Yorker Encyclopedia of Cartoons (two volumes totaling 1536 pages). The publisher (previously Blackdog & Leventhal, now Running Press) now lists a deluxe version for $800.00. No info (yet) on what to expect for that much dough.

Here’s a screenshot of the listing — the deluxe version is at the bottom, sans cover image:



Blitt’s Hawking Tribute in The Paris Review; New Yorker State of Mind’s Latest Post (with a Cartoonist Mystery);

Barry Blitt’s Hawking Tribute in the Paris Review

Here’s Barry Blitt not on the cover of The New Yorker. 

And here’s Mr. Blitt’s entry on the A-Z:




Barry Blitt (above) Born in Montreal. New Yorker work: January 10, 1994 -. His first contribution to the magazine was a cover, one of many to come for the magazine. His cover, “Politics of Fear” for the issue of July 21, 2008 was and remains a cause celebre. His first cartoon appeared December 18, 2006. Website: Mr. Blitt’s Wikipedia entry (with personal and professional history).


New Yorker State of Mind’s Latest Post (with a Cartoonist Mystery)

One of my favorite blogs returns with a look at the issue of March 2, 1929. The beautiful cover (above) is by Adolph K. Kronengold, who (according to The Complete Book of Covers From The New Yorker: 1925- 1989 ) contributed 22 covers to the magazine between 1928 through 1947.  I can find just two mentions of Mr. Kronengold in the New York Times archive: as having an exhibit of paintings in the Lounge Gallery of the Eighth Street Playhouse in March of 1936,  and as an instructor in “commercial art and cartooning” at the Westchester Workshop in September of 1938.  Anyone have more?

This scant info leads me to the mystery cartoonist noted on the current New Yorker State of Mind post (the cartoon appears below).  The New Yorker State of Mind blogger is asking for help ID-ing the artist (as I love a mystery, I’d love to know too). The drawing is incorrectly attributed to I. Klein in the Complete New Yorker database, and the name does not show up in the general index in the database.  It also does not appear in the Index for The Complete Cartoons of The New Yorker. An online search turned up zippo results. I used various search configurations, such as the name + illustrator, or  name +artist, name +cartoonist, or just the name solo. I also tried the name as “Kindl” instead of “Kindol.” If anyone out there has a solution, please pass it along. I’d like nothing more than to add this cartoonist to the Spill‘s A-Z.

Here’s the cartoon from the issue:



Roz Chast Looks For A Pen; Tomorrow Night’s Book Signing of Interest: Marcellus Hall; Exhibit of Interest: Addams, Chon Day, Gahan Wilson, John Held Jr., Kunz, Jonik, Eckstein, Caldwell & More; Sarah Boxer in The Atlantic: “Why Is Trump So Hard to Caricature?”

Roz Chast Looks For a Pen

A fun post on Jane Mattimoe’s Case For Pencils blog: Roz Chast is asking for pen suggestions.  Read it here.

Note: Ms. Chast (along with the cover artist, Liniers, and several others) is a guest of honor at the upcoming MOCCA Festival at the Society of Illustrators. Info here.


Tomorrow Night’s Book Signing of Interest: Marcellus Hall

This notice from the illustrator & New Yorker cover artist, Marcellus Hall:

This Thursday I’ll be at Desert Island Comics 6:50-9pm signing and selling my debut graphic novel, KALEIDOSCOPE CITY. During the first 45 minutes or so Ambrosia Parsley will join me as I sing a few songs and Gabe Soria will interview me. Come!
540 Metropolitan
Williamsburg Brooklyn NY
6:50 – 9pm
Exhibit of Interest: Sordoni Art Gallery At Wilkes University
News of an exhibit featuring a number of New Yorker contributors including Charles Addams, Chon Day, John Held, Jr. Bob Eckstein, John Caldwell, John Jonik, Anita Kunz, and Gahan Wilson.  Info here.
Below, the artists in the show:
Sarah Boxer in The Atlantic: “Why Is Trump So Hard to Caricature?”
A fascinating article by Ms. Boxer.  It includes a number of New Yorker artists. Read it here.


Marisa Acocella’s Animation; Blog Post of Interest: Captionless Cartoons; Campbell Fest Rolls On

Marisa Acocella’s Animation

Marisa Acocella’s animated “Mission Control” is up on Youtube See it here.

Ms. Acocella began contributing to the New Yorker in 1998.  Her most recent book was Ann Tenna.


Blog Post of Interest: Captionless Cartoons

Thanks to Dick Buchanan by way of Mike Lynch’s blog we can see a sampling of non-New Yorker captionless cartoons from 1938 – 1970.  A number of New Yorker cartoonists are represented, such as Everett Opie, above. See all the work here. 


E. Simms Campbell Fest Continues on Attempted Bloggery

Stephen Nadler’s blog continues to direct a spotlight on Mr. Campbell’s Esquire work.  See the latest post here!

Here’s Mr. Campbell’s entry on the A-Z:

E. Simms Campbell (above) Born, 1906. Died, 1971. New Yorker work: 1932 -1942. Key collections: Cuties in Arms (1943) – the earliest published collection of cartoons by an African-American cartoonist); More Cuties in Arms (also 1943); and Chorus of Cuties (1953)

The Monday Tilley Watch: The New Yorker Issue of March 19, 2018

The latest New Yorker is the “Spring Style” issue (it says so right at the top of the Table of Contents). The huge feathered Carol Channing-esque hat on the cover (by Maira Kalman) sets the tone, or theme. There’s a lot of color in this issue (ads, illustrations, and one cartoon) — more so than usual, I think.  Makes sense: Spring = color.

Was hoping Rea Irvin’s iconic masthead (below) would be reborn for Spring, but alas. Had it popped up in this issue, it would look exactly like this.

And now off to the cartoons. The first, on page thirty-three, is by Carolita Johnson. For those visiting New York, or living in New York, Ms. Johnson’s titled drawing,  Dressing For the Manhattan Climate, will ring true any time of year.  Six pages later a Harry Bliss drawing. Mr. Bliss’s single panel cartoons are instantly recognizable — they’re always in a box. I’ll be curious to see how the fellows at the Cartoon Companion dissect this drawing.  

Five pages later, Joe Dator brings us a variation of pin the tail on the donkey.  For me, Mr. Dator’s drawings belong in that category of cartoonists work that amuses at first sight, even before the caption is read. Four pages later, a Roz Chast drawing that drove me to a dictionary. The drawing is titled Deux Ex Caffeina. I recognized it as a play on deus ex machina — a phrase I know but never bothered (til now) to understand.  Here’s how Mirriam -Webster defines it:

The New Latin term deus ex machina is a translation of a Greek phrase and means literally “a god from a machine.” “Machine,” in this case, refers to the crane that held a god over the stage in ancient Greek and Roman drama.

Got it now. Very nice drawing.

Opposite Ms. Chast’s drawing is a P.C. Vey drawing. With a caption that concerns paper shredding and includes the words “incriminating documents” there’s a heavy overtone of criminality.  By the way, both Ms. Chast’s drawing and Mr. Vey’s sit well on their respective pages, sized and balanced well off each other.

The next two pages contain two cartoons as well.  Mary Lawton’s, with a cat hogging a shaft of late afternoon sun and  Paul Noth’s comment on gun control (or lack thereof). Following a few pages later is a drawing by relative-newbie Olivia de Recat with another in her series of word-based cartoons. Time will tell if this is her specialty.

Two pages later a Will McPhail bathroom drawing.  I found the terror of the fellow in the tub very funny, but I do wonder why the text, in horror typeface, is within the drawing itself. This is the kind of big cartoon question that keep some of us awake at night. 

Opposite Mr. McPhail’s tub terror is Bishakh Som‘s debut in the New Yorker.  For those keeping track, Mr. Som is the fourteenth new cartoonist to make their debut since Emma Allen assumed the position of cartoon editor in May of 2017. 

Three pages after Mr. Som’s drawing is one by this cartoonist, putting to use perspective I learned in a high school Mechanical Drawing class. Thank you, Mr. Minchin.

Two pages later Ed Steed employs a bit of color in a drawing featuring little identical gentlemen.  At first I thought Mr. Steed had joined the cartoon tiny wind-up toy people club (Charles Addams did a lot of those drawings).  But closer inspection reveals these tiny folk to be real cartoon people and not toy cartoon people (you can tell they’re not toys because they lack wind-up keys). It being an Ed Steed drawing I don’t suppose it makes any sense to wonder why these dapper miniature men are tiny and identical and appear to have some Snidely Whiplash characteristics (the hats and mustaches). Funny is funny.

Three pages later, an Emily Flake family in crisis drawing, followed thirteen pages later by a Liana Finck drawing. Ms. Finck’s style, like the aforementioned Mr. Dator’s style, is immediately welcoming (and, of course, humorous). 

Eight pages later, the last drawing in the issue (not counting the Cartoon Caption Contest drawings) and the newest entry in the New Yorker‘s cartoon subway series. This one is by newbie (though not debut newbie) Sharon Levy. Having never been out west, I needed someone with left coast experience to explain it to me.  Okay then.

Note: all of the above cartoons can be seen on the New Yorker‘s website here.   Scroll down to Cartoons from the Issue

–See you next week