Susanne Suba 1913 – 2012




Word has reached Ink Spill this evening of the passing of Susanne Suba, whose five covers, one cartoon and numerous “spot” drawings began appearing in The New Yorker in the 1930s.


Born in Budapest, Hungary in 1913, Ms. Suba came to the United States in 1920.  After studying at Pratt Institute in New York she headed to Chicago, where she began her long career as an author-illustrator.  She eventually settled  in New York, where she passed away yesterday, February 4, 2012.


Many of her spot drawings for The New Yorker were collected in Spots by Suba (E.P. Dutton & Co. Inc., NY 1944).


For more information, here’s a link to The University of Southern Mississippi – de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection, where the Susanne Suba Papers are held. The University of Southern Mississippi — de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection

Book of Interest: Conversations with William Maxwell


Barbara Burkhardt, who wrote William Maxwell: A Literary Life (University of Mississippi Press, 2005) has edited Conversations with William Maxwell (University of Mississippi Press,  June, 2012.

Maxwell, who joined The New Yorker in 1936, was originally hired as a hand holder for the Artists, taking over from Wolcott Gibbs, who had tired of the task.  The job required Maxwell to act as a bridge between the editors and the artists (with the exception of Peter Arno and Helen Hokinson, who were handled by Katharine White).  In an interview with John Seabrook for The Paris Review (No. 82, Fall 1982), Maxwell said:

It was called “seeing artists.” The first time they paraded in one after another I was struck by the fact that they all looked like the people in their drawings.