Lee Lorenz’s Essential Essentials; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Lee Lorenz’s Essential Essentials

Here are three essential books for any and every New Yorker cartoon library. All were compiled and edited by the former New Yorker  art/cartoon editor, Lee Lorenz.  My understanding is that there were to be more in the series, but we all know how fickle the publishing biz is (wouldn’t it have been just incredibly wonderful to have had an Essential Robert Weber!). What you’ll find in each book is a compact history of the subject, with early work, and interviews, bibliographies, favorite cartoon topics, and plenty of cartoons. The first two in the series came out in 1998 (Booth & Barsotti), followed by the Essential Ziegler in 2000.  Mr. Lorenz also gave us a great book on William Steig, as well as an overall look at The New Yorker‘s art and art department from its beginning.  Those titles are essential too — they just don’t include the word “essential”  in their titles.

From the Spill‘s A-Z, the entries for those mentioned above:

Lee Lorenz ( Photograph taken 1995 by Liza Donnelly) *Born 1932, Hackensack, NJ. Lorenz was the art editor of The New Yorker from 1973 to 1993 and its cartoon editor until 1997. During his tenure, a new wave of New Yorker cartoonists began appearing in the magazine — cartoonists who no longer depended on idea men. Cartoon collections: Here It Comes (Bobbs-Merrrill Co., Inc. 1968) ; Now Look What You’ve Done! (Pantheon, 1977) ; The Golden Age of Trash ( Chronicle Books, 1987); The Essential series, all published by Workman: : Booth (pub: 1998), Barsotti ( pub: 1998), Ziegler (pub: 2001), The Art of The New Yorker 1925 -1995, (Knopf, 1995), The World of William Steig (Artisan, 1998). New Yorker work: 1958 –.

Charles Barsotti Born, San Marcos, Texas, September 28, 1933.  Died, Kansas City, Mo., June 16, 2014. Mr. Barsotti was briefly the cartoon editor of The Saturday Evening Post ( from 1968 until its demise in 1969). The New York Times review of his 1981 collection “Kings Don’t Carry Money” led with the following:”Thurber lives, in Kansas City under the name of Charles Barsotti.” His deceptively simple line drawings of pups and kings, and businessmen have been a presence in The New Yorker for over fifty years. It is likely that Mr. Barsotti is the only New Yorker cartoonist to have ever run for Congress (an unsuccessful bid, in 1972, in Kansas). New Yorker work: 1962 – . Key collections: Kings Don’t Carry Money (Dodd, Mead, 1981), and The Essential Charles Barsotti, Compiled and Edited by Lee Lorenz (Workman, 1998). Website: http://www.barsotti.com/ ……Link to Ink Spill’s Charles Barsotti appreciation.

 

George Booth (photo above taken in NYC 2016, courtesy of Liza Donnelly) Born June 28, 1926, Cainesville, MO. New Yorker work: June 14, 1969 – . Key collections: Think Good Thoughts About A Pussycat (Dodd, Mead, 1975), Rehearsal’s Off! (Dodd, Mead, 1976), Omnibooth: The Best of George Booth ( Congdon & Weed, 1984), The Essential George Booth, Compiled and Edited by Lee Lorenz ( Workman, 1998).

Jack Ziegler (photo by Michael Maslin, taken at The Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art, NYC, 2008) Born, Brooklyn, NY July 13, 1942.  Died, March  29, 2017.  New Yorker work: 1974 – 2017. Key collections: all of Ziegler’s collections are must-haves. Here’re some favorites: Hamburger Madness (Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, 1978), Filthy Little Things ( Doubleday/Dolphin, 1981) and The Essential Jack Ziegler, Complied and Edited by Lee Lorenz ( Workman, 2000)….. Link here for Ink Spill’s Jack Ziegler interview from late 2016.

Robert Weber (Pictured mid 1980s. Photograph by Liza Donnelly) Born April 22, 1924, Los Angeles, California. Died, October 20, 2016, Branford Connecticut. NYer work: nearly 1500 cartoons, and close to a dozen covers since 1962…. Read Ink Spill’s November 2016 Appreciation of Mr. Weber here.

_____________________________________________________________________

The terrif cartoonist Kim Warp has today’s Daily Cartoon.  See it here.

Ms. Warp has been contributing to The New Yorker since 1999.

Visit her website here.

Steve Stoliar On Meeting Charles Addams; Gil Roth Interviews Emily Flake; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon (And Yesterday’s)

Steve Stoliar On Meeting Charles Addams

Mr. Stoliar, the author of Raised Eyebrows: My Years Inside Groucho’s House (BearManor Media, 2015), posted the following birthday tribute to Charles Addams on Facebook. My thanks to Mr. Stoliar for allowing it to appear here.

Note: Dick Cavett’s New Yorker Cartoonists episodes were broadcast in March of 1978 (one taping, broken up into two programs). Besides Mr. Addams, the panel included Frank Modell, George Booth, and Lee Lorenz. ________________________________________________________________________

Gil Roth Interviews Emily Flake

Gil Roth, who has interviewed many many cartoonists over the years on his Virtual Memories podcast, speaks with Emily Flake in this podcast.

Ms. Flake began contributing to The New Yorker in 2008. Her latest book is That Was Awkward: The Art and Etiquette of the Awkward Hug (Viking).

________________________________________________________________

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

John Klossner on longer days. Mr. Klossner began contributing to The New Yorker in 2008.  Visit his website here.

…and Yesterday’s

Lila Ash on keeping Christmas lights up. Ms. Ash began contributing to The New Yorker in December of 2018.  Visit her website here.

From The Archives: The Humble New Yorker Art Department Office Supply; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; Today’s Daily Shouts Cartoonist

Here’s a fun oddity: the stamp/envelope moistener that once sat in The New Yorker‘s Art Department at the magazine’s 25 West 43rd Street address. The moistener, sold by Chicago’s Wilson Jones Company, seems have been manufactured in the 1940s. It was in use at The New Yorker until 1991, when the magazine moved south across 43rd Street to modern digs and more modern means of correspondence.

When I began contributing to The New Yorker in the 1970s, cartoonists either went into the office to drop off their weekly batch of drawings, or they mailed in their batch. If you sold a drawing, it would arrive by week’s end in a 10″x13″ manilla envelope with a glued flap.  I can’t help but think of the humble part the moistener –a  simple heavy object — played in the process of every New Yorker cartoonist’s life back then. It was part of a chain of events that began with the cartoonist’s creation of a drawing; the drawing then sent or brought to the magazine’s offices where it passed by the eyes of the art editor (James Geraghty, until 1973, and then Lee Lorenz).  If it made that first cut, it moved on to the art meeting, and shown to the editor (Harold Ross until 1951, William Shawn until 1987, then Robert Gottlieb). If the editor Oked it (and the fact checkers cleared it), the Oked cartoon was placed in a New Yorker envelope, sealed (!) and returned to the cartoonist. Trumpets didn’t blare upon its homecoming, but it was always a heart-racing “moment” seeing that envelope and unsealing it to find which of your drawings was now a New Yorker cartoon.

____________________________________________________

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Help remembering 2020 by Avi Steinberg.

Mr. Steinberg began contributing to The New Yorker in 2012.

___________________________________________________

Today’s Daily Shouts Cartoonist

“Torture Devices Designed By My Inner Monologue”

by Irving Ruan, and cartoonist Eugenia Viti, who began contributing to The New Yorker in in June of 2019.

 

Late Notice: A Launch Party Tonight With Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell Live-Drawing; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; The Monday Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of November 18, 2019; Some Thoughts After Seeing The Documentary Film, “Stevenson Lost And Found”

Late Notice: A Launch Party Tonight With Hilary Fitzgerald Campbell Live-Drawing

From the Facebook Invite:

Come celebrate the release of Sarah Dooley’s new book ‘Are You My Uber?’ which is a parody of the P.D. Eastman classic ‘Are You My Mother?’ Listen to comedians Sydnee Washington, Eva Victor, Larry Owens, Pat Regan, Marcia Belsky, Gabe Gonzalez, and Taylor Ortega tell hilarious stories of wild cab experiences while Hilary Campbell, the book’s illustrator, does live drawings.

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

______________________________________________________________

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

A leafy Daily from Chris Weyant, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 1998. Visit his website here.

 

______________________________________________________________________________

The Cover: I see leaves. The fifth cover (below right) by Brigit Schossow.  Read a Q&A with her here.

There’ve been a lot, a whole lot, of leafy New Yorker covers, but this current one by Ms. Schossow  brought to mind (courtesy of a helpful New Yorker colleague) the beauty below left by the magazine’s former art & cartoon editor, Lee Lorenz.

 

The Cartoonists:

The Cartoons:

A scattering of thoughts about just a few of the cartoons in this issue:

P.C. Vey’s bear and couple in the woods (on page 33) made my day.

Something totally unexpected cartoon-wise is usually always good, and so it was coming upon a Jack Ziegler cartoon. Especially nice that the drawing is set in one of his favorite cartoon scenarios: a bar.

A fun Pete Mueller drawing (p.27).  Two Mueller drawings in two issues. Yay!

Ellis Rosen’s friend’s shower (p.56) is different. Like the choices of warm/cold and cold/warm.

Needed a ten second Googled refresher course with Liana Finck’s drawing (p. 60).  Not so much what her drawing means, but the meme’s origin (just curious, y’know).

The Rea Irvin Talk Masthead Watch:

Am hoping to open the issue one day and see Mr. Irvin’s iconic design has returned. No dice this week. For now, there’s that re-draw. Read about the classic Irvin Talk masthead here.

Here’s the real deal:

___________________________________________________________________________

Some Thoughts After Seeing The James Stevenson Documentary Film, Stevenson Lost And Found

A few random thoughts after attending last night’s premiere of Sally Williams’ fab documentary film, Stevenson Lost And Found.  There are are so many moments in the film — too many to go into here — that cartoonists and people who love New Yorker cartoons will treasure.

One instance I found particularly fascinating: the animated sequence showing what might go through cartoonists brains as they sit down and begin the day’s work. We’re shown a series of cartoons covering a wide variety of subject matter. It is, for this cartoonist, a relatable experience, as the mind careens through unlimited places every morning.

Another instance: in some eye-popping sequences we’re shown images of Mr. Stevenson’s children’s books lined-up, as well as Mr. Stevenson’s New Yorker  black scrap books (shown above) kept in the magazine’s library. These books contain every single signed New Yorker contribution by Stevenson, whether it’s his writing or drawing (including covers of course).*  Most of The New Yorker’s nearly 650 cartoonists (from 1925- present) have not had their work collected in one scrap book, let alone five. **

At the screening, I was lucky enough to be seated next to the legendary artist, Edward Sorel. During one of the sequences in the film where we are grasping the enormous amount of work Stevenson did (both published and unpublished) Mr. Sorel leaned over and said to me, “Do you feel as much like an underachiever as I do?”

In a perfect cartoon world, there’d be films such as Lost And Found for a number of the magazine’s artists. It’s heartening that there is already a Thurber film out there, and an Addams documentary in the works, as well as a film about George Booth.  But how about a Steinberg documentary, and one about Steig***?  I can dream, can’t I.  For now, we are quite fortunate to have this gem on Stevenson showing on the big screen. Go see.

__________________________________

* I say “signed” because The New Yorker  did not and does not scrap book cartoon ideas handled by other artists. Mr. Stevenson, early in his New Yorker career, wrote a large number of captions for some of the magazine’s artists (read about his “secret job” here).

**Artists (and writers) without an enormous amount of work are scrap booked in alphabetically  cataloged books, along with other contributors.

***A short video accompanied the Steig exhibit that ran at The Norman Rockwell exhibit.

There is a 20 minute film about Edward Sorel available here.

A 40 minute Eldon Dedini film here, 

And a short film about C.E.M. (Charles E. Martin) here.

 

 

The Washington Post’s Dana Fradon Obit; Article Of Interest: New Yorker Cover Artist & Cartoonist Robert Kraus; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon; The Asian Babies Exhibition Catalog

From The Washington Post,  “Dana Fradon, prolific New Yorker cartoonist with a satirical edge, dies at 97” by Harrison Smith. The piece includes a terrific photo of Mr. Fradon by Anne Hall Elser who was assistant to Lee Lorenz during his sterling run (1973- 1997) as the magazine’s art editor.

Above: a drawing by Mr. Fradon that appeared in The New Yorker March 22, 1969

__________________________________________________

Article Of Interest: Robert Kraus

From The Ridgefield Press, October 19, 2019, “Ridgefield Notables: Robert Kraus, New Yorker Cartoonist”

— above: Mr. Kraus and two of his twenty-one New Yorker covers.

___________________________________________

Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

The rich around the campfire by Maddie Dai, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 2017.

 

________________________________________

 

The Asian Babies Exhibition Catalog

The catalog for Pearl River Mart’s exhibit,  “Asian Babies: Works From Asian New Yorker Cartoonists” is available online as a free download here.

Below, two artist pages out of the ten artists showing their work.