Thurber Thursday: The Seal On The T-Shirt; Blitt In Conversation; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Thurber Thursday: The Seal On The T-Shirt

Thurber’s “All right, have it your way — you heard a seal bark!” published in The New Yorker January 30, 1932 was a moment: a moment for Thurber, a moment for The New Yorker, and a moment for cartoon art (and judging by the above photo of a fave t-shirt: a moment for merchandising). According to Thurber biographer Burton Bernstein:

“By the middle of 1932, the barking seal on the headboard was the most talked-about drawing of the year, and its creator had attracted a sizable following, sizable enough so that Harper & Brothers decided it was time to [bring] out a collection of Thurber art called, aptly, The Seal In The Bedroom and Other Predicaments.” 

By detouring around the standard polished drawings of cartoonists, and drawing his “unbaked cookie” people (as Dorothy Parker described Thurber people in her introduction to The Seal In The Bedroom) Thurber widened the understanding and acceptance of what a cartoon could be (and should be, depending on the artist).

The drawing  continues to pop up whenever Thurber’s art is discussed, and I have to add that it seems whenever his art is discussed there’s always an asterisk of sorts accompanying the discussion as here where the blogger says, “He should not be judged using professional criteria.” Well why shouldn’t he be judged using professional criteria (whatever that means).  However Thurber’s art is described, however it is judged, it is, to quote Ms. Parker when discussing the Seal drawing: “Mad, I don’t say. Genius, I grant you.”

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Blitt In Conversation

From The National Arts Club, “An Evening With New Yorker Cover Artist Barry Blitt”

Mr. Blitt will be in conversation with his editor at The New Yorker, Francoise Mouly.

His entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

Barry Blitt  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. He was awarded a Pulitzer in 2020 for editorial cartooning. Website: barryblitt.com Mr. Blitt’s Wikipedia entry (with personal and professional history).

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

From Victor Varnado, who began contributing to The New Yorker  in July of 2019, on helpful signposts.

 

 

 

The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of April 13, 2020; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

To my readers: This being the time we’re in, the online issue has not yet been posted (as of 11:00am), so what follows is a shortened version of The Monday Tilley Watch. Long-time visitors might recall I prefer first sightings of new cartoons in situ, but in order to provide at least some basic info, I’ve gone to the slideshow (it’s posted here — scroll way down).

The Cover: The last time we saw a Pascal Campion cover (Jan.6, 2020) the Spill pointed out its uncanny resemblance to an Arthur Getz cover from 1965. This week Mr. Campion speaks with The New Yorker‘s art editor, Francoise Mouly, about Mr. Getz’s (and Sempe’s) influence on his work.

 

The Cartoonists:

The Cartoons:

Just as The New Yorker ran a good number of war cartoons during World War II (enough to fill an Album of war cartoons), we are beginning to see a number of corona virus-related cartoons during this particular war. In the latest issue, five of the eleven cartoons are tied-in to the virus, with another few possibly so.

Update after the digital edition was posted: a color strip by Ed Steed is also virus-related.

The Rea Irvin Masthead Talk Masthead Watch:

Without access to the digital edition, I can’t say for sure that Christoph Niemann’s Talk masthead redraw(!) still appears instead of Mr. Irvin’s iconic masthead.  If I had to guess, I’d say the real deal (just below) is still on a shelf, waiting to be dusted off.

Update after the digital edition was posted: the redraw remains…for now.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Jeremy Nguyen on what everyone’s doing again.

Mr. Nguyen began contributing to The New Yorker in

2017. Visit his website here.

 

 

 

 

 

The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue of March 23, 2020: No GOAT

The Cover: This week’s cover, by Christoph Niemann is right on the money. The New Yorker‘s art editor, Francoise Mouly, has a Q&A with the artist here.

Historical Note:  this is the first issue of The New Yorker  not to include a Goings On About Town section. A notice appears on this week’s Table of Contents.

A potted history of GOAT (as it’s sometimes affectionately called)

The very first issue of The New Yorker  included a “conscientious calendar of events worth while” called Goings On.  The very first Goings On was just one page, near the back of the book. Below is the heading of that first Goings On.

The Goings On heading survived up through the issue of October 31, 1925. Goings On About Town was used for the very first time in the next issue (November 7, 1925). Goings On About Town was moved to the very front of the magazine in the issue of January 23, 1926.

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And now back to the present…and this week’s issue.

The Cartoonists:

Once again, I’ve posted the entire listing of artists as this week’s Spots are by the fab cover artist, Marcellus Hall.

There is a newbie this week: Matilda Borgstrom, who is the third new cartoonist to enter The New Yorker‘s stable of cartoonists this year, and the fifty-sixth new cartoonist brought in under Emma Allen’s cartoon editorship, begun in the Spring of 2017.

The Cartoons:

There are, as you would expect, a number of cartoons (“Drawings”) this week reflecting directly or indirectly the times we’re in: Roz Chast’s store front sign referencing hand sanitizer and face masks, Frank Cotham’s castle cleaning crew, Liza Donnelly’s kitchen full of fermented food, Emily Flake’s monster coming out of a closet.

The remaining cartoons take us away for awhile– as we’d want them to; the variety includes a mermaid, a couple of cowboys, a typing kitty, stargazers…and more.

The Rea Irvin Talk Masthead Watch: Virus, or no virus, the watch continues. Read about Mr. Irvin’s moth-balled iconic Talk masthead here.

Here’s what we’re no longer seeing:

 

 

New Yorker Cartoonists (And Cakes) At The Magazine’s Holiday Party

Here are a few scenes from last night’s merry New Yorker Holiday Party. A happy throng filled a giant room on the 33rd floor of 1 World Trade Center.

All photos courtesy of Liza Donnelly, unless otherwise attributed. My thanks to cartoonists Liza  Donnelly, Joe Dator, Felipe Galindo, and Jason Chatfield for their photos.

Left: New Yorker editor, David Remnick (holding microphone) addresses the crowd. Singers in Santa hats are just behind him.

Party-goers brought food and drink (it was pot-luck), a nice throw-back to what I recall of department holiday parties many decades ago at the magazine’s 2nd address, 25 West 43rd Street.

 

Of the many cakes and cookies present (and presented), here’s one that sported a familiar face ( photo courtesy Joe Dator).

Below: The New Yorker carolers (photo courtesy Jason Chatfield).

Below: l-r, cartoonist Maggie Larson and cover artist, Jenny Kroik.

Below: cartoonist & caroler, Mort Gerberg  (photo courtesy Jason Chatfield).

Below: l-r, cartoonists Joe Dator, Ali Solomon, and Johnny DiNapoli (photo courtesy Joe Dator).

Below: l-r, cartoonists Drew Dernavich, Ellis Rosen, and by the window, Kendra Allenby.

Below: l-r, the aforementioned Ms. Allenby, Jeremy Nguyen, and The New Yorker‘s fabled Stanley Ledbetter.

Below: l-r,  New Yorker editor, David Remnick, and Pam McCarthy, the magazine’s deputy editor.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Below: l-r, cartoonists Felipe Galindo, and Tim Hamilton.

Below: l-r, Joe Dator, Kendra Allenby, and Ben Schwartz (photo courtesy Joe Dator).

Below: cartoonists Marisa Acocella, and Bob Eckstein.

Below: The New Yorker‘s cartoon editor, Emma Allen.

Below: cartoonist Pat Byrnes (holding red cup) surveys the food.

Below: cartoonists Robert Sikoryak, and Gabrielle Bell. (photo courtesy Felipe Galindo).

Below: l-r, cartoonist Nick Downes, and the aforementioned Mr. Ledbetter.

Below: l-r, cartoonists Jason Adam Katzenstein, Karen Sneider, Emily Flake, and The New Yorker‘s assistant cartoon editor, Colin Stokes. (photo courtesy Felipe Galindo).

Below: cartoonists Christopher Weyant, Ms. Acocella, and coming up behind Ms. Acocella, Sam Gross.

Below: cartoonists Ellie Black, and Maggie Larson.

Below: cartoonists Joe Dator and Emily Flake,  Jason Adam Katzenstein in profile behind Ms. Flake, and Drew Dernavich, far right. .

Below: l-r, cover artist & cartoonist, John Cuneo, The New Yorker‘s art editor, Francoise Mouly, and cover artist, Peter de Seve (this photo taken in Ms. Mouly’s “planning room” in the art department)

Below: l-r, cartoonists Jeremy Nguyen, Jason Chatfield, and Liza Donnelly

Below: cartoonists David Borchart and Felipe Galindo.

Below: cartoonists Peter Kuper and P.C. Vey

A cake with a message (photo courtesy of Joe Dator).

 

The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of October 21, 2019; Head-Scratching Quote Of The Year; Addams’s Wednesday

The Cover: a somewhat menacing image by Mark Ulriksen that could’ve easily been used for Halloween (all it needs is a witch riding through the sky on a broom). But its title “Towering Wealth” heavily suggests a tie-in to this special Money Issue. Read a Q&A with Mr. Ulriksen about his cover here.

The Cartoonists:

The Cartoons:

Random thoughts after a few tours through the the issue…

Was much fun immediately running into Robert Leighton’s observatory cartoon (page 25). We don’t see too many observatory cartoons anymore.  One that will forever stick in my mind is John O’Brien’s fabulous Coca-Cola bottle telescope from October 9, 2000.

Any issue of The New Yorker with a George Booth cartoon (p.38) is an issue off to an excellent start. It is simply a delight seeing his work in the magazine.

As enjoyable as seeing a Booth cartoon is seeing a Koren cartoon. He is this issue’s most veteran artist, having begun contributing to The New Yorker in 1962 (Mr. Booth began contributing in 1969).  To my eye, Both Mr. Booth’s drawing and Mr. Koren’s sit perfectly on the page, the better for us to enjoy them.

Bruce Kaplan’s dishtowel drawing (p.55) wins the award for most unexpected cartoon of the issue. There is nothing more fun in The New Yorker cartoon universe than the unexpected; it’s a cartoon moment.

Liana Finck’s drawing (p.46) is another solid cartoon moment.  Drawing + perfect caption = job well done.

The Rea Irvin Talk Masthead Watch:

Mr. Irvin’s wonderful design (below) was removed in the Spring of 2017 and replaced by a redrawn version. Further reading here. It remains puzzling (to me anyway) how something so perfect can be mothballed.

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Head-Scratching Quote Of The Year

This from Francoise Mouly, The New Yorker’s art editor in an October 11th Washington Post piece on Charles Addams.

“Addams is one of the few New Yorker cartoonists who was consistently laugh-out funny,” says Francoise Mouly, the magazine’s art editor since 1993.”

 

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Addams’s Wednesday

From The New York Times, October 14, 2019, “The Many Shades Of Wednesday Addams”

Miss Addams is shown above sitting on her father’s shoulder. According to Linda Davis’s wonderful biography of Charles Addams, Addams wrote in his production notes for the television series that “he found [Wednesday] ‘secretive and imaginative, and  poetic.'”