A Rafter of Kovarsky Turkeys; A Favorite Thanksgiving Cartoon Revisited

A Rafter of Kovarsky Turkeys

Thanks to the generosity of Anatol Kovarsky’s family, here are a number of the artist’s unpublished sketches (mostly turkeys, plus a few chickens) as well as an unpublished sketch of his Thanksgiving New Yorker cover of November 24, 1962 ( the finished cover art appears as well). Mr. Kovarsky’s work will be celebrated this coming January in an exhibition at the Society of Illustrators.

 

For more on Mr. Kovarsky, who passed away in 2016, here’s a Spill piece from 2013, “Anatol Kovarsky at 94: Still Drawing After All These Years”  (this piece also appeared on the New Yorker‘s website in a slightly edited form).

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A Favorite Thanksgiving Cartoon Revisited

The above drawing by Bob Eckstein appeared in The New Yorker, November 26, 2012. It remains one of my all-time favorite Thanksgiving cartoons.  When it appeared I asked Mr. Eckstein a few questions about it:

Michael Maslin: Bob, your drawing, The First 3-D Thanksgiving, is, I believe, the first 3-D cartoon in the magazine’s history (if anyone out there finds another, please bring it to my attention).  Is it actually 3-D?  If I was wearing 3-D glasses right now, and looking at your drawing, would it be appear three-dimensional?

Bob Eckstein: It works, but not as well as it could, but that is by design.  It is 3-D but we reeled it back.  Knowing the reader wouldn’t have glasses, I went for the most readable degree of 3-Ding the cartoon so it still looked like a cartoon and not this heavy ominous image on the page which would have distracted from the joke.

MM: We should probably give a shout-out to Norman Rockwell, whose famous 1942 Saturday Evening Post “Freedom From Want”  piece is obviously referenced in your drawing.  Did you have Rockwell’s work in front of you when you were working on your finished piece?

BE: I had it in front of me, and underneath me, as I did trace most of the guy in the back and then glanced over to draw the rest of the set-up.  My initial sketch had the whole family shocked at the dancing turkey but it looked too forced and too different from the Rockwell iconic piece.  I realized Rockwell had it right the first time except he forgot the glasses.

 

 

 

Just Opened! Library of Congress Exhibit “Drawn to Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists; Advertising Work by New Yorker Cartoonists, Pt. 24: Otto Soglow’s Pudding Drawings; More Spills: Weyant and Twohy

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

From the LOC’s press release:

Original works by women cartoonists and illustrators are featured in a new exhibition opening at the Library of Congress on Nov. 18. Spanning the late 1800s to the present, “Drawn to Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists” brings to light remarkable but little-known contributions made by North American women to these art forms.

Among the artists represented are New Yorker contributors Roberta MacDonald, Helen Hokinson, Liza Donnelly, Peggy Bacon, Roz Chast, and Anita Kunz.

Details here.

Above: March 1920 Vanity Fair cover by Anne Harriet Fish.

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Advertising Work by New Yorker Cartoonists, Pt. 24: Otto Soglow’s Pudding Drawings.

Here are three Royal Pudding ads by the great Otto Soglow.  All feature his iconic “Little King”;  for those wanting more Soglow I suggest finding a copy of the fab Cartoon Monarch: Otto Soglow & The Little King,  edited by Dean Mullaney (IDW, 2012). I’ve shown the cover below the ads.

All these pudding ads ran in 1955.  As has been the case with a very large percentage of the Spill’New Yorker ads series, my thanks go to Warren Bernard for his generosity.

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Two books of note.  One out in January and one not out for awhile. Both for kids.

Christopher Weyant has illustrated Laura Gehl’s My Pillow Keeps Moving (Viking Books for Young Readers).  Due in mid January 2018.

Mike Twohy‘s Stop! Go! Yes, No!: A Story of Opposites (Balzer & Bray) due in August of 2018.   Cover art not yet available

 

 

 

New American Bystander Cover Revealed; Advertising Work by New Yorker Cartoonists, Pt. 23: Anatol Kovarsky; More Spills: A Blitt Book Party

New American Bystander Cover Revealed

Michael Gerber, publisher of The American Bystander has released the cover for issue #6.  Needless to say the art is by Arnold Roth (needless to say because he’s signed the art and  it could only be the work of Mr. Roth.  No one else draws like that).

If you love New Yorker cartoons, you’ll love the Bystander.

Go here to read more, to contribute to the Kickstarter campaign, to order a copy, and/or better yet, subscribe.

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Advertising Work by New Yorker Cartoonists, Pt. 23: Anatol Kovarsky

Continuing on in this series now with the first of a number of ads sent to the Spill by Anatol Kovarsky’s daughter, Gina. You’ll be seeing Mr. Kovarsky’s wonderful art pop up on the Spill throughout the holiday season as we head toward the opening of an exhibit of his work at the Society of Illustrators in January. Here are three undated ads for an underwear company.

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The New Yorker‘s editor, David Remnick hosted a book party  for Barry Blitt last night celebrating the release of Mr. Blitt’s Blitt (Riverhead, 2017).  Among those seen in the crowd: illustrators Steve Brodner, Joe Ciardiello, John Cuneo, Gayle Kabaker, Istvan Banyai and the New Yorker‘s art editor, Francoise Mouly;  cartoonists Liza Donnelly, Art Spiegelman, Maggie Larson, Peter Kuper, Jeremy Nguyen, and the New Yorker‘s cartoon editor, Emma Allen  and the New Yorker’s assistant cartoon editor, Colin Stokes.

Below: Blitt by Blitt

 

 

The Think And The Ink: The New Yorker Album of Drawings 1925 – 1975

After spending time in the early years of the New Yorker Albums these past few Sundays I thought it would be fun to skip a few decades and look at how the magazine celebrated its 50th anniversary. I love the simplicity of this Album, its no-frills approach. Beginning with the no-nonsense cover featuring the title (set in the so-called Irvin typeface) and Rea Irvin’s bowing Eustace Tilleys. I look at these Tilleys as time period bookends, greeting each other from two very different eras. They are not quite mirror images of each other: the one bowing from 1975 is microscopically different than the one from 1925. If there’s any intended symbolism in that (and I doubt it), my guess would be that the magazine mascot was shown as true to its roots while allowing for subtle change (glacial change in those years).

The only introductory text is found on the inside front flap. It’s as if the magazine’s editor (William Shawn at that time) wanted to say that whatever needed to be said about this amazing body of work was going to be said by the work itself and not by “opinionaters.”

In a first for one of the Albums, there’s a dedication (Lee Lorenz had succeeded Mr, Geraghty in 1973):

The back cover lists the contributors (“Artists”) from Charles Addams to the new kid on the block, Jack Ziegler.

Appropriately enough, the Album leads off with a full page drawing by Peter Arno (one of his drawings led off the very first Album).  The volume ends with a small drawing by William Steig; a first drawing and a last by artists whose work was, in the words of the flap copy above, visually beautiful. The work in between is, of course, also visually beautiful, as well as funny. In more modern times, in the era post-Geraghty, post-Lee Lorenz, a different approach to the magazine’s cartoons was espoused: “it’s the think, not the ink.” But for the first 72 years of New Yorker‘s existence, it was the magazine’s dedication to the think and the ink, that allowed the New Yorker cartoon to make its considerable mark.

 

 

 

Smilby Cartoons Auctioned; New Yorker cartoon editor (and associate cartoon editor) Sing; Soglow Covers Judge

Smilby Cartoons Auctioned

From the Rugby & Letterworth Observer, November 17, 2017 “Rugby Cartoonist’s Playboy Art Raises Eyebrows at Auction”  — this piece on auctioned work by the late cartoonist Francis Wilford-Smith, known professionally as Smilby. His work appeared in the New Yorker from 1962 through 1971.

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New Yorker cartoon editor (and associate cartoon editor) Sing

In this week’s episode of  “Cartoons, Etc.” there’s singing.  See it here. (on the left is Emma Allen, the magazine’s cartoon editor, and on the right, Colin Stokes, the  associate cartoon editor).

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Soglow Covers Judge

More fun stuff over on Attempted Bloggery.  See the great Otto (“Little King”) Soglow’s color work on the cover of Judge here.

Cartoon Companion Rates Latest New Yorker Cartoons; Event of Interest: Addams in the City

Cartoon Companion Rates the Latest New Yorker Cartoons

A new issue of The New Yorker means a new batch of cartoons for the Cartoon Companion‘s “Max” and “Simon” to examine, explore, and evaluate. They consider the merits (or lack thereof), then apply their rating system of 1 through 6 (6 being tops). Read it here.

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Event of Interest: Addams in New York 

From The New York Times, November 16, 2017″ Events For Children in NYC This Week”:  Family Day: Addams

According to the Times, a “celebration that revolves around the [Morris-Jumel] mansion’s new exhibit, “Charles Addams: Family & Friends” which features 35 of his works, along with photographs and memorabilia”