A Holiday Cartoon Book Roundup

With the holidays approaching, this seems a good time to mention some of The New Yorker cartoon-related books that have appeared on Ink Spill this year.

 

 

 

Cartoon Monarch: Otto Soglow & The Little King (IDW Publishing) Introduction by Ivan Brunetti, Foreward by Jared Gardner

From the Ink Spill review in March of this year: What’s not to like about this handsome volume? If I had my way every cartoonist of note would celebrated thusly: beautifully reproduced work (both black & white and color), with a thorough and informed foreward.

 

 

 

The Receptionist: An Education at The New Yorker by Janet Groth (Algonquin Books)

Comings and goings on at The New Yorker in the latter part of William Shawn’s reign as editor, with mentions of cartoonists and famous contributors such as Charles Addams, J.D. Salinger, Joe Mitchell and Woody Allen.

 

 

 

The Big New Yorker Book of Dogs (Random House)

This is a beautiful book, chock full of art  (covers & cartoons) as well as hefty contributions by many of the magazine’s writers.  A bonus: the book is Thurber heavy — and that’s never a bad thing.

 

 

 

 

I Really Should Be Drawing: The Blook by Mick Stevens (an e-book)

From one of the funniest cartoonists in modern times, this e-book, available through Lulu.com

 

 

The Resistance: A Thriller  by Peter Steiner (Minotaur Books)

Steiner’s fourth book in the Louis Morgon series.

  “Brilliant, evocative, elegiac, and suffused with sadness. . . . The Resistance is a powerful and beautiful reminder of Faulkner’s dictum that the only thing truly worth writing about is ‘the human heart in conflict with itself’.” –Booklist, starred review.

 

 

 

After the Fall: A Novel by Victoria Roberts (W.W. Norton & Co.)

From the ever-wonderful Victoria Roberts, this illustrated novel.

 After the Fall is one of a kind. With her distinctive, intelligent drawings and tongue-in-cheek humor, legendary cartoonist Victoria Roberts has crafted a delightfully quirky coming-of-age fantasy for adults. I couldn’t put it down.” (Patricia Bosworth, Vanity Fair Contributing Editor and author of Jane Fonda: The Private Life of a Public Woman )

 

 

 

Steinberg: A Biography by Deirdre Bair (Doubleday/Nan A. Talese)

An excerpt from the Publishers Weekly review:

“The pre-eminent New Yorker cartoonist leads a life worthy of his own ironic art in this scintillating biography … Steinberg emerges as a tangle of neurotic contradictions … Bair’s long and amply researched biography unfolds in a graceful prose that’s stocked with absurdist scenes and colorful characters…”

 

 

No Man Is a Desert Island by Felipe Galindo Feggo (Jorge Pinto Books) A classic collection of cartoons by the multi-talented artist and cartoonist. 

 

 

Marco Goes to School by Roz Chast (Atheneum Books for Young Readers) 

An excerpt from The New York Times review:

“It’s never too early to expose your child to the joys of Chast’s wobbly-inked humor, and winning converts will be easy with this latest tale (after “Too Busy Marco”) about the dimwitted parrot…”

 

 

 

 

Blown Covers: New Yorker Covers you Were Never Meant to See by Francoise Mouly (Abrams)

The New Yorker’s Art editor gives us a behind-the-scenes look at art that didn’t make the cut.

 

 

 

Last but not least, The New Yorker’s Cartoons of the Year 2012 — a bookazine. Hundreds of cartoons culled from the past year.  With an Introduction by the magazine’s Cartoon Editor, Bob Mankoff.


 

 

Cartoon Auction includes work by Charles Addams, Geoge Booth, and William Steig

From the Kingston (NY) Daily Freeman, “Art auction in Rhinecliff Saturday”

this news of a benefit auction of cartoons, including work by New Yorker artists  Charles Addams, George Booth, William Steig, Frank Modell, James Stevenson, Peter Steiner, Lee Lorenz, Harry Bliss, Barbara Smaller, Charles Barsotti, Joe Dator, Gahan Wilson, Robert Mankoff, Liza Donnelly, P.C. Vey, Roz Chast, Danny Shanahan, Carolita Johnson, Edward Frascino, Michael Crawford, Zachary Kanin, Pat Byrnes, Mick Stevens, David Sipress, Raymond Davidson, Robert Weber, Jason Polan, Henry Martin, and more.
In addition to the auction, a signed Charles Addams print will be raffled.

Link here to the Morton Memorial Library

 

 

In Good Company: a look at the cartoons in Al Ross’s New Yorker debut issue

 

The news that Al Ross passed away last week got me to thinking about  his start at The New Yorker, way way back in the issue of November 27, 1937, when he was twenty-five years old. This morning I went to our cabinet full of bound New Yorkers, brought out the volume from late 1937 and began paging through the particular issue that contains Al’s inaugural drawing. It’s a wonderful snapshot of that time with an outstanding roster of cartoonists.

The issue begins with a Helen Hokinson cover,  one of those pieces capturing a moment. Beautiful. The first cartoon is by Charles Addams, done in his earlier style before his drawings became more defined. Next up is a Richard Decker drawing printed in step-ladder fashion – sitting atop two columns of type. On the opposite page, a Richard Taylor, also step-ladderish. Taylor had such an unusual style – it reminds me of P.C. Vey’s in a way. Turning the page we come to a beautiful full page by William Galbraith. On the opposite page a great spot drawing by Suzanne Suba – a Macy’s parade moment.

Next page, a Mary Petty that nearly eats up the whole page. Opposite that is a short piece by E.B.White titled “Small Thanks to You “(sorry, couldn’t avoid mentioning that). Several pages later a Syd Hoff spread along the top third of the page. Up next is one of the masters of the full page, Gluyas Williams. A few pages later the two Prices face each other: George and Garrett.

I have to take a break here just for a moment and comment on the way the make-up department handled the cartoons. With the exception of the full page cartoons, every single cartoon was awarded a unique space, meaning the shape of the cartoon is different for each cartoon. Even the cartoons that are rectangular are never the same size (the Hoff stretched out three columns wide, the Garrett Price two and a half columns wide).

Turning the page, a Robert Day cartoon (another rectangle, but nearly square). Two pages later, not a cartoon, but an Al Frueh drawing illustrating a current Broadway show.  Frueh does a terrific take on Orson Welles.  Would love to see a collection of his theater pieces in a book (there is a very nice catalog of his work, but so far, not a collection).

Two pages later we find Al Ross’s first New Yorker cartoon (caption: “Listen, Chief…”). Those familiar with Al’s later work would be hard pressed to recognize this cartoon as one of his.  It’s done in a somewhat early Addams-ish style. Across the gutter from the cartoon the name “Robert Benchley” appears at the end of his theater review.  Heady company!

A number of pages go by before we reach a fairly large and very funny Barbara Shermund cartoon.  Leafing through more pages, through the New Yorker’s holiday wrap up of children’s toys and books, we come upon a brief review of Dr. Seuss’s  And to Think That I Saw it on Mulberry Street: “Slight but humorous. Spirited comic-strip pictures and a rhymed text show the power of exaggeration…”

And finally, a Perry Barlow cartoon to end the issue.  It’s a children’s book themed drawing running on the book review page.  If I’m not mistaken this is an unusual pairing. I’ve been under the impression for most of my life that the editors avoided tying the cartoons to the surrounding story.

Before we close the magazine, a treat near the end:  a full page ad for The 1937 New Yorker Album, published by Random House. A banner running across the page declares: “Just Published – bigger and funnier than ever.” Contributors include all the aforementioned in this post ( except Al, whose work would begin showing up in later Albums) plus, among others,  Peter Arno, James Thurber,  Rea Irvin, Gardner Rea, Otto Soglow, Alan Dunn, Barney Tobey, Alajalov,  Chon Day, Carl Rose, Whitney Darrow, Jr., and William Steig.  Wow.

 

For more on Al Ross, head on over to newyorker.com, where the magazine’s cartoon editor, Bob Mankoff, has posted this piece (it includes a good scan of Al’s first cartoon).

And for even more: Mike Lynch has posted a number of Al’s drawings on his site. (You’ll need to scroll down a ways, past all the NCS business)


 

 

 

Chas Addams original sets record auction price; Reading: Carolita Johnson

From Artfixdaily.com, March 7, 2012, “Gil Elvgren dominates $3+ million Heritage Auctions illustration Art Event in Beverly Hills” (Chas Addams content about midway down: Addams’ Sad Movie original set a world record for an Addams’ original, selling for $40,625.  You’ll also find a link to the Heritage Auction listing).

 

From Melville House Books, March 7, 2012, “Leigh Stein & Carolita Johnson at 192 Books” — a reading/discussion March 19, 2012 @ 7:00pm. (link for details)