Tom Gauld’s cover for this new issue is one of the best covers I’ve seen in the post-Lee Lorenz as editor era (Mr. Lorenz was the New Yorker‘s art editor from 1973 through 1993, and cartoon editor from 1993 through 1997. During his years as art editor he edited both covers and cartoons). Here’s Mr. Gauld talking about his Spring offering.
Ink Spill puts its hands together for the cover.
My first run through of the issue earlier today made me wonder if this was the Illustration Issue (there isn’t an official Illustration Issue, but if there was, this could be it). Here’s what I saw:
Goings On About Town, is as usual nearly a full page photograph.
A small color illustration in the Theater section.
A nearly half-page illustration for Night Life.
A three column wide photograph for Food & Drink.
A more than quarter-page photograph for Personal History.
A two column wide illustration for Shouts & Murmurs.
A nearly half-page photograph for The Sporting Scene.
A full page illustration for Profiles.
A page-and-a-half illustration for The World of Fashion.
A full page photograph for Fiction.
A three-quarter page illustration for The Theater.
An large illustration center of the page for Vinson Cunningham’s review in Books.
A more than quarter-page illustration for James Woods review in Books.
A center of the page illustration for Cinema.
And now to the cartoons:
The very first cartoon is by the veteran Mick Stevens. It’s an inside a whale cartoon. I immediately paused to consider the bend in the gullet of the whale. Having never been inside a whale I don’t know what it looks like in there but the cartoonist in me has always thought the inside of a whale was one huge space, like an airplane hanger. So yes, the bend caused me to stop and think awhile.
Up next five pages later is a super-dee-duper detailed William Haefeli drawing. Its graphic-ness (I don’t think that’s really a word) is startling. Perhaps it’s the use of so much black space (windows especially).
Five pages later a Paul Noth drawing (Mr. Noth has a new book out, so congrats to him). This is an airlines passengers themed cartoon. As someone who has almost never flown I’m outta the loop on the whole boarding routine, so…
Two pages later a Seth Fleishman captionless drawing (as mentioned in previous posts here, Mr. Fleishman is solidly in the captionless cartoon school — which isn’t to say there are never captions). Here we have brick-oven pizza blended with a fossil fuel. I can’t get enough of pizza parlor cartoons. I’m sure everyone remembers this classic from Gahan Wilson.
Six pages later, a P.C. Vey cartoon. Not sure anyone else could’ve done this (maybe the aforementioned Mr. Wilson). There’s a tiny bit of sinisterism (is that a word?) in the air with this drawing. Seven pages later an outta the box (or boxes) Roz Chast drawing. We’ve become accustomed to her comics-like structure of three panels (or more). This single panel is striking, graphically.
Equally striking on the very next page is a teethy Edward Koren drawing starring one of his famous beasts. Perhaps the best placed drawing in the issue (there are several cartoons vying for worst placed cartoons). Breathing room galore for Mr. Koren’s dental drawing.
Four pages later Kate Curtis three bears cartoon (one bear unseen, as is Goldilocks). The window in the drawing looks out onto a dark forest. My gaze kept returning there, expecting to see something. But no…
Three pages later an ashes in an urn drawing from David Sipress. Comedic use of ashes in urns summons up (for me) this scene from Meet the Parents. Mr. Sipress makes use of Milton Glaser’s I heart NY campaign, introduced in 1977.
Two pages later a Ben Schwartz scientists observing behavior cartoon. The cartoon rests on the hope that the reader has some familiarity with a particular author mentioned. If you’re not familiar with the author then it’s off to Wikipedia for a crash course.
Four pages later, Julia Suits has a toga drawing featuring some lovely draping. On the very next page Trevor Spaulding has a cartoon related to a recent cultural movement. Interesting drawing.
Three pages later a somewhat complex drawing from Lars Kenseth combining fringe mob activity with fine art (see Mickey Blue Eyes for more on this).
Seven pages later, the last drawing in the issue (not counting those that are part of the caption contest): a Carolita Johnson cartoon in a slim space on the bottom of page 72. The drawing is about lip balm which strangely(?) reminds me of an interview I saw the other day with Joseph Kennedy III wherein he discusses “Chapstick-gate.”
And that’s that, except for this *
*Rea Irvin’s classic Talk of the Town masthead design has been missing for nearly a year now. Just as a reminder, it looks exactly like this: