The Wednesday Tilley Watch: Interview Of Interest: Liana Finck; Cuneo At The New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Interview Of Interest: Liana Finck

From Publishers Weekly, February 25, 2020, “Liana Finck on Pop-up Magazine and Taking Her Cartoons To the Stage”

Ms. Finck began contributing to The New Yorker in 2013. Visit her website here.

 

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John Cuneo At The New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium

A crowded room last night at the New School for John Cuneo‘s fab fun informative talk as part of Ben Katchor‘s New York Comics & Picture-Story Symposium. Spotted in the crowd, besides, of course, Mr. Katchor: New Yorker cover artist Marcellus Hall, illustrator Joe Ciardiello, illustrator Chris Buzelli, illustrator Katherine Streeter, illustrator Stephen Kroninger, Ad Director Soojin Buzelli, photographer Deborah Feingold, New Yorker cartoonists Bob Eckstein, Robert Leighton, Evan Forsch, Carol Isaacs (aka The Surreal McCoy)*, and Attempted Bloggery‘s Stephen Nadler (who kindly provided the photos above).

*Carol Isaacs’s film The Wolf of Baghdad will be screened tomorrow night in NYC.  Info here.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Politics, by Jon Adams. Mr. Adams has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2017. Visit his website here.

 

All New Yorker Cartoons Are New Yorker Drawings But Not All New Yorker Drawings Are New Yorker Cartoons; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon (And Yesterday’s)

In a fun February 22nd 2020 post on The Daily Cartoonist celebrating the first appearance of James Thurber’s drawings in The New Yorker (shown above), the post’s author D.D. Degg wrote this:

There seems to be some disagreement over whether the above drawings constitute cartoons. A New Yorker State of Mind, where the above screenshot comes from, calls them cartoons; whereas others disagree, calling them spot art. Cartoonist and New Yorker cartoon historian Michael Maslin claims the first real Thurber cartoon appeared in the January 3, 1931 issue (below).

To use language we’ve been hearing a lot of in Democratic debates: my name was invoked, so I would like to respond.

There really shouldn’t be “some disagreement over whether the above drawings constitute cartoons.”  Using the New Yorker‘s language for referring to cartoons, in usage for 95 years, there are two ways one can go when referring to the magazine’s cartoons: you can call them cartoons, or you can call them drawings (and well yes, there’s a third descriptive:  some call them “art”). The magazine “officially” refers to them as drawings (you can see the designation on every Table Of Contents). There are three kinds of New Yorker cartoon formats: with a title (and that could mean a series of cartoons linked by a theme — all appearing in a spread. Booth, Ziegler, Levin, and Saxon, to name a few, were responsible for some terrific spreads over the years); with a caption; without a caption. I’ll show you three of mine as examples:

With a caption:

Without a caption:

With a title:

All of the above are cartoons, and they are also drawings. They all appeared in the magazine, surrounded in some part by text, but not linked to the text in any way other than graphic proximity. In Thurber’s Pet Department piece at the top of this post, the drawings are accompanying the text — the piece as a whole set off by a horizontal and vertical line. The seal, and the dog exist in Thurber’s piece to illustrate the text surrounding them. New Yorker cartoons, historically, do not reflect, or refer to, or illustrate the text surrounding them.  In Thurber’s Pet Department drawings there is no “one-two punch” with either drawing (according to Peter Arno, that one-two punch is an essential element of a New Yorker cartoon). The wonderful Thurber dog and seal, if removed from the accompanying text, and left on their own, would still be fun drawings (hey, they’re Thurber drawings after all). They might make us laugh; we may find it amusing that a seal is in a room with a table and lamp (I know I do). But if the drawings had been submitted as cartoons, sans accompanying text, I doubt the editors would’ve bought and run them as a stand alone drawing/cartoons (Spots maybe). There’s not enough cartoon there.

Another sliver from Mr. Degg’s post, referring specifically to Thurber’s dog and seal:

“…whereas others disagree, calling them spot art.”

New Yorker spot drawings are free range graphic pieces, not illustrating the text surrounding them (in modern times they sometimes do refer to an issue’s theme, if the issue is thematic), thus Thurber’s dog and seal are not New Yorker spot drawings.

Finally, Mr. Degg’s says:

“…Michael Maslin claims the first real Thurber cartoon appeared in the January 3, 1931 issue…”

My information concerning Thurber’s first New Yorker cartoon comes from Edwin T. Bowden’s James Thurber: A Bibliography, published by Ohio State University Press in 1968. In all the years (close to 40 now) I’ve used this as a reference, I’ve yet to find an error.  While I heavily rely on Mr. Bowden’s good work, I also comb through back issues of The New Yorker.  In all of my combing, I’ve never found an earlier Thurber New Yorker cartoon than the one Mr. Bowden designated as the first ( that cartoon appeared in the issue of January 31, 1931).

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Brendan Loper on getting directions.

Mr. Loper has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2016.

Yesterday’s Daily: Avi Steinberg on a warm February.

Mr. Steinberg has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2012.

 

Early Release! Next Week’s New Yorker Cover; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

As we’ve seen, from time-to-time The New Yorker likes to rush release a cover (new issues are usually published online very early Monday morning).  Above is next week’s effort by Barry Blitt.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Peter Kuper on Washington conspiracy theories.

Mr. Kuper has been contributing to The New Yorker since 2011.  Visit his website here.

His latest book is Heart Of Darkness.

Thurber Thursday: An Assortment Of Paperbacks; Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Thurber Thursday

One of the best things about visiting a used book store is coming upon the unexpected. Nearly all of the above came to me that way. Of all these, my favorite cover is one of the simplest: the 1962 edition of Thurber Country, published by Penguin Books in Great Britain:

Finally, if you want a brand new Thurber book to dive into, I highly recommend Michael Rosen’s fab A Mile And A Half Of Lines: The Art Of James Thurber.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Carrot trouble by Danny Shanahan, who began contributing to The New Yorker in 1988.

 

 

Kenneth Mahood’s 1958 Cartoon Collection; Today’s Daily Shouts Cartoonist (And Yesterday’s); Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

Mahood’s 1958 Cartoon Collection: Not A Word To A Soul

Ordered not long ago (for one dollar(!), plus s&h) from a seller across the big pond, Kenneth Mahood’s 1958 cartoon collection arrived today and has been added to the Spill‘s cartoon library. Was very happy to see the dust jacket (and a protected dust jacket at that) in such great shape.  What I didn’t realize about this collection (until today) is that it is made up entirely of captionless cartoons, such as you see on the cover. From the inside flap copy:

“…the intelligent enquirer after knowledge today does not need a preamble of word or lengthy caption to point the humour…The pictures tell their own wordless story, with your intelligent help. The story is all there for you, and it is much better that way.”

Here’s Mr. Mahood’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

 

Kenneth Mahood  Born, Belfast, Northern Ireland, 1930. New Yorker work: 1951 -1996. Mr. Mahood’s bio from the British Cartoon Archive.

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Today’s Daily Shouts Cartoonist

From Lars Kenseth, “A Celebrity Profile Of My Cat”

Mr. Kenseth began contributing to The New Yorker in

2016.  Visit his website here.

Further reading: this Spill piece on Mr. Kenseth from 2017.

And Yesterday’s Daily Shouts Cartoonist was Ali Fitzgerald: “America!: How To Throw A Wild Presidents’ Day Party”

…See more of Ms. Fitzgerald’s New Yorker work here.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist & Cartoon

J.A.K. on the 4 day work week.

Mr. K. began contributing to in 2014.  His book, Everything Is An Emergency: An OCD Story In Words & Pictures will be out this June from Harper Perennial.