Thurber Thursday: Fave Cover; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; Article Of Interest: “School Days Influences…”

Of all the Thurber books published in his lifetime it’s the cover of Let your Mind Alone! that I’ve always liked best. Notice I said the cover, and not the book (I like the book too, but it’s not my favorite).

The cover relies on a single Thurber drawing, “Motorman Concealing His Sex Life from a Woman Psychologist” (it appears, run vertically, in Chapter 9).

I’ve never thought too much about why the cover is so appealing (and I won’t now) — it’s just one of those things. A quick thought is that the cover drawing seems an odd choice considering the other choices within. Perhaps it’s the oddity that’s appealing.

According to Bowden’s James Thurber: A Bibliography , the first edition (published September of ’37) was  5000 copies. By year’s end there were six editions.

A few things about my copy: someone glued the dust jacket flap — just the flap — on the inside front cover of my copy. And: next to the fellow on the right, there’s a barely visible white line impression of the fellow walking off under the glued down flap. 

Funnily enough, even though the dust jacket cover is my fave, I do not have it (other than that glued inside flap mentioned above). My copy, a first edition, bought for $2.50 (‘as is”) decades ago, was coverless.

There are a number of later editions, with other covers, but for me, the first is the best (the Armed Services Edition is pretty great too).

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Maddie Dai on a deep-sixed Christopher Columbus.

Ms. Dai began contributing to The New Yorker in 2017.  Visit her website here.

 

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From The Elective, June 11, 2020, “School Days Influences: Inside The World Of New Yorker Cartoonists”

Eight* New Yorker cartoonists and one** cover artist on their schooling.

*Lila Ash, Liza Donnelly, Amy Hwang, Navied Mahdavian, Sam Marlow, Liz Montague, Jeremy Nguyen, Ellis Rosen, **Robert Sikoryak.

Illustration: Michael Witte‘s cover for The New Yorker Book Of Teacher Cartoons

 

 

 

The Wednesday Watch: Al Frueh’s Stage Folk; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Al Frueh’s Stage Folk

Here’s a true oddity, and an expensive one at that: Al Frueh’s Stage Folk: A Book of Caricatures, published in 1922. A copy  went for a little over a thousand bucks when sold by Hakes Auction in 2010.

I know what some of you might think: The New Yorker didn’t begin publishing until 1925, so why is a book published in 1922 of interest. Some Frueh context:

The very first cartoon in the very first issue of The New Yorker was by Al Frueh.* He was also responsible for the magazine’s second cover.** He never had another, but in his case perhaps once was enough as he was to carve out a space and a place in the magazine for nearly four decades (1925-1962) as its theatrical caricaturist (according to this Illustration Age piece, Frueh “contributed four hundred and seventy theatre caricatures and some four hundred other illustrations and cartoons for the magazine”).

His four hundred and seventy theatre caricatures brings us back to Stage Folk, published three years before Frueh began his long run at The New Yorker.  As explained by Frueh himself in the Hakes copy, he hand printed all but one of the 37 prints in the book, which was limited to 500 copies. Frueh’s work in Stage Folk  (which I assume appeared in the New York World, his home before The New Yorker) is the same wonderful minimalist flowing style The New Yorker readership enjoyed for so many years. Two examples from Stage Folk: below, left, Ethel Barrymore, and right, George M. Cohan.

* and **: Below left, Mr. Frueh’s drawing in the first issue of The New Yorker, February 21, 1925; below right, Frueh’s cover for the magazine’s second issue, February 28, 1925.

More Frueh

For those wanting more about Frueh, there’s Frueh On The Theatre: Theatrical Caricatures 1906-1962, a catalog from The New York Public Library, published in 1972  (preface by Brendan Gill).

 

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Tim Hamilton on secret tactics.

Mr. Hamilton has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2016. Visit his website here.

 

Gil Roth Interview Of Interest: Liza Donnelly; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Gil Roth continues his daily covid conversations on his Virtual Memories Show.  Yesterday’s guest was long-time New Yorker contributor, Liza Donnelly. Listen here.

Ms. Donnelly’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

Liza Donnelly (pictured above) Born, Washington, D.C. New Yorker work: June 21, 1982 – Key book: Funny Ladies: The New Yorker’s Greatest Women Cartoonists and Their Cartoons (Prometheus, 2005). Edited:  Sex & Sensibility: Ten Women Examine the Lunacy of Modern Love…in 200 Cartoons ( Twelve, 2008). Co-authored with Michael Maslin: Husbands & Wives ( Ballantine 1995), Call Me When You Reach Nirvana ( Andrew & McMeel, 1995), Cartoon Marriage ( with Michael Maslin) (Random House, 2009), When Do They Serve the Wine?( Chronicle, 2010). Women On Men (Narrative Library, 2013). Donnelly also wrote and illustrated a popular series of dinosaur books for children ( Dinosaur Day, Dinosaur Beach, Dinosaur Halloween, etc.) all published by Scholastic.  She is the CBS News Resident Cartoonist. Website: http://www.lizadonnelly.com

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Elisabeth McNair on the end not near. Ms. McNair began contributing to The New Yorker July of 2018. Visit her website here.

 

The Tilley Watch: The Daily Shouts Cartoonist; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; The Norman Rockwell Museum’s Four Freedoms Forum

No new issue this week (last week’s was a double)… but, as always, there’s online cartoon activity at newyorker.com :

Yesterday’s Daily Shouts cartoonist Ward Sutton brought us “Lower-Bar Heroes Of The Coronavirus”…Mr. Sutton has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2007.  Visit his website here.

Today’s Daily cartoon is by Liz Montague, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 2019.  Visit her website here.

 

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Norman Rockwell Museum Four Freedoms Forum

All the info here.

  • Jenn Smith (moderator), Community engagement editor and education reporter at The Berkshire Eagle
  • Brooke Bridges, Founder and CEO of Building Bridges SEL
  • Liza Donnelly, Illustrator and Author, Cartoonist for Peace
  • Gwendolyn Hamden Van Sant, Founder and CEO of Multicultural Bridge
  • Laurie Norton Moffatt, Director and CEO of the Norman Rockwell Museum
  • Roberta McCulloch Dews, Education Chair of the Norman Rockwell Museum Board of Trustees, and Director of Administrative Services, Mayor’s Office at City of Pittsfield
  • Jerry Pinkney, Illustrator and Author, Caldecott Winner, and Coretta Scott King Book Award Winner

 

 

The Weekend Spill: New Yorker-Centric Books Stepping Up; Article Of Interest: “Behind The Covers”; The Online Tilley Watch, June 1-5, 2020

New Yorker-Centric Books Stepping Up

Here at Spill headquarters we ran out of bookshelf space quite awhile ago; even the places to “temporarily” place them have become crowded. A few weeks ago, a few old favorites and new favorites — all New Yorker-centric (but one) — began being placed at the bottom step of our thirteen hallway steps. Then a few more books were placed on the next step up, and so on and so on, until eleven steps were filled (not so that we couldn’t continue to use the steps as steps — the books take up approximately half the width of each step). With just two empty steps left, I’m beginning to wonder: where next.

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Article Of Interest: “Behind The Covers”

From Otega Daily Times, June 8, 2020, “Behind The Covers” — this article on filmmaker Sally Williams, whose Stevenson Lost And Found is a must-see for all those who love New Yorker cartoons.

Here’s James Stevenson’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

James Stevenson Born, NYC, 1929. Died, February 17, 2017, Cos Cob, Connecticut. New Yorker work: March 10, 1956 -. Stevenson interned as an office boy at The New Yorker in the mid 1940s when he began supplying ideas for other New Yorker artists. Nine years later he was hired a full-time ideaman, given an office at the magazine and instructed not to tell anyone what he did. He eventually began publishing his own cartoons and covers as well as a ground-breaking Talk of the Town pieces (ground breaking in that the pieces were illustrated). His contributions to the magazine number over 2000. Key collections: Sorry Lady — This Beach is Private! ( MacMillan, 1963), Let’s Boogie ( Dodd, Mead, 1978). Stevenson was a children’s book author, with roughly one hundred titles to his credit. He was a frequent contributor to the Op-Ed page of The New York Times, under the heading Lost and Found New York. Stevenson’s The Life, Loves and Laughs of Frank Modell, published in 2013, is essential reading. Sally Williams’ 2019 documentary film, Stevenson Lost & Found is essential viewing.

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An end of week listing of New Yorker artists contributing to newyorker.com features

The Daily Cartoon: Yasin Osman, Victor Varnado, Tim Hamilton, Adam Douglas Thompson, Elisabeth McNair.

Daily Shouts:  Ali Fitzgerald, Emily Flake.

…and Barry Blitt’s Kvetchbook.

To see all the above, and more, link here.