“The Table Where We Used To Sit To Work On Pictures”
A photo I’ve seen before on the web, but never with the note attached you see above. The letter, signed “Jim” was written by the then art editor James Geraghty.* The “Gardner” it’s addressed to was likely Gardner Rea, one of the magazine’s artists. There’s another possibility: the “Gardner” could’ve been Gardner Botsford, a New Yorker editor, but it makes more sense that the art editor was sending one of his artist’s a photo of the art table. You’ll notice up on the wall is a poster listing some of the magazine’s artists, from Charles Addams to Gluyas Williams. Also on the wall are five Thurber drawings on the Art Meeting, titled The Art Conference. You can see the series on pages 157-160 in Collecting Himself: James Thurber On Writers And Writing, Humor And Himself. Edited by Michael Rosen. Published by Harper & Row, 1989.
For further reading on The New Yorker‘s weekly meeting where the table played a part, here’s a Spill post, “The Art Meeting“ from 2012.
*it has been suggested to me that the “Jim” is actually James Thurber as the provenance of the photo mentions Mr. Thurber but not Mr. Geraghty (the photo is part of the NY Metropolitan Museum of Art’s holdings). I have my doubts it’s “Jim” Thurber, but put the suggestion out there for anyone to confirm, if possible.
Books Of Interest: Alay-Oop By William Gropper
Out this past June from New York Review Books, Alay-Oop by William Gropper. Mr. Gropper contributed to The New Yorker just once, meaning he’s a Spill One Clubber. More about Alay-Oop here.
Here’s Mr. Gropper’s A-Z entry:
William Gropper (Self portrait, from The Business of Cartooning, 1939) Born, December 3, 1897, NYC. Died, January 6, 1977, Manhasset, NY. 1 drawing, April 11, 1942. Quote:”I owe a great deal to the east side of New York. I was hit on the head with a rock in a gangfight…that’s how I became an artist.” [Quote from catalogue, Meet the Artist, 1943]. For a brief bio of Gropper “the workingman’s protector” visit: http://specialcollections.wichita.edu/
A Case For Pencils On Maddie Dai’s Tools Of The Trade
Jane Mattimoe’s latest A Case For Pencils post features Maddie Dai, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 2017.
Daily Shouts & Daily Cartoon Cartoonists
Meet The Artist (1943): Dorothy McKay
The third in a series of New Yorker artists included in Meet The Artist, a catalog published in 1943 by the M.H. de Young Memorial Museum.
Here’s Ms. McKay’s entry on the Spill’s A-Z:
Dorothy McKay (Photo from Cartoon Humor, 1938) Born c.1904, died June, 1974 New York City. New Yorker work: 1934 -1936.