Exhibit Of Interest: William Steig; Profile Of Interest: Frank Cotham; Today’s Daily Cartoonist: Maddie Dai; A Weekend Shouts By Liana Finck; The Tilley Watch For The New Yorker (Combined) Issue Of June 10 & 17, 2019

Exhibit Of Interest: William Steig

A current exhibit at The Carle Museum focused on William Steig’s classic Sylvester and the Magic Pebble includes “Steig’s preliminary sketches, story boards, and dummy books related to the seminal publication.” Info here.

William Steig’s entry on the A-Z:

Born in Brooklyn, NY, Nov. 14, 1907, died in Boston, Mass., Oct. 3, 2003. In a New Yorker career that lasted well over half a century and a publishing history that contains more than a cart load of books, both children’s and otherwise, it’s impossible to sum up Steig’s influence here on Ink Spill. He was among the giants of the New Yorker cartoon world, along with James Thurber, Saul Steinberg, Charles Addams, Helen Hokinson and Peter Arno. Lee Lorenz’s World of William Steig (Artisan, 1998) is an excellent way to begin exploring Steig’s life and work. New Yorker work: 1930 -2003.

Of Note: From The New Yorker, June 3, 2019, Rumaan Alam’s  “William Steig’s Books Explored The Reality Adults Don’t Want Children To Know About”

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Profile Of Interest: Frank Cotham

From Memphis Magazine, The Well-Drawn World of Frank Cotham— this piece on the long-time contributor to The New Yorker.

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Today’s Daily Cartoonist/Cartoon

A Maddie Dai Kingly drawing. Ms. Dai began contributing to The New Yorker in 2017.

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A Weekend Daily Shouts…

…by Liana Finck. Another installment in Ms. Finck’s “Dear Pepper” series.

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The Tilley Watch For The New Yorker (Combined) Issue Of June 10 & 17, 2019

The Cover: A fitting  Bruce Eric Kaplan cover for the “fiction Issue”  — it’s always a pleasure to see one of the magazine’s cartoonists work appear there.  Read more about Mr. Kaplan’s cover here.

More “Tweaking” Of Note: This is the second issue of the magazine in a row not listing the Cover Artist on The Contributors page (Barry Blitt was not credited there last week). The last issue to credit the cover artist (Malika Favre) was the issue of May 27th.  The cover artists are still credited on the table of contents. Example:

As tweaking continues to occur it’s perhaps a good time to recall what the magazine’s Creative Director, Nicholas Blechman told MAGCulture in June of 2017:

The New Yorker is a magazine shaped by time. Very little has changed since the first issue in 1925, and that respect for legacy is part of our visual identity. Since I arrived in 2015, we’ve been fine tuning an incredibly resilient and elegant design. Our road map for design changes in the print magazine is mostly complete. I think the table of contents could be tweaked, and the design of the Fiction page could also be tinkered with. Most of the big innovations you will be seeing at The New Yorker will be online, as we contemplate a web redesign and introduce improvements to The New Yorker Today app.

While I wholeheartedly agree with Mr. Blechman’s first sentence (The New Yorker is a magazine shaped by time) I must disagree with the first half of the sentence that follows:

Very little has changed since the first issue in 1925, and that respect for legacy is part of our visual identity. 

There was in fact an enormous design change (and changes in the magazine’s DNA) beginning with Tina Brown’s first issue, October 5 1992. Here’s a link to Walter Goodman’s September 29, 1992 New York Times piece assessing that issue.

The Cartoonists:

Of Note: The lead cartoon by George Booth, one of the New Yorker‘s all-time great artists, appears on the 50th anniversary of Mr. Booth’s first cartoon in magazine, June 14, 1969 (the Spill will celebrate accordingly on June 14th).

Of the 14 cartoonists in this issue, two are making their New Yorker print debut: Eugenia Viti and Lydia Conklin, making them the 15th and 16th new cartoonists brought into the magazine’s stable in 2019, and the 41st & 42nd to be brought in since Emma Allen became cartoon editor in May of 2017. With 16 new cartoonists, the magazine has now tied the 2016 record for new artists. And, of course, we’re only half-way through the year.

Rea Irvin: Mr. Irvin’s iconic Talk masthead is still a-missin. Read about it here. Here’s the real deal:

 

 

 

 

Happy 90th Edward Sorel!; Interview Of Interest: Ken Krimstein; Article Of Interest: Paul Karasik; Today’s Daily Cartoonist: Emily Flake & Yesterday’s: J.A.K.; Cast Recording In The Works For Peter Arno’s Hit B’Way Play, The New Yorkers

The great Edward Sorel celebrated his 90th birthday yesterday.  Mr. Sorel’s first cover for The New Yorker (below) made headlines when Tina Brown selected it as the debut cover of her editorship at the magazine.

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Interview Of Interest: Ken Krimstein

From The Grinnell Magazine, – “I Think Therefore I Draw” — this piece on Ken Krimstein.  Mr. Krimstein began contributing to The New Yorker in 2000.  (this piece found via The Daily Cartoonist)

Link here to Mr. Krimstein’s website.

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From The Vineyard Gazette, “A Brief Sketch Of A Life As A Cartoonist”  — this piece on Paul Karasik, co-author of How To Read Nancy, and New Yorker cartoonist since 1999.

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Today’s Daily Cartoon/Cartoonist…and Yesterday’s

Today’s Daily cartoon, Mueller with a a big pinch of Trump, is by Emily Flake.  Ms. Flake began contributing to The New Yorker in 2008.  Visit her website here.

Yesterday’s Daily, 100% Mitch McConnell,  was by J.A.K. (aka Jason Adam Katzenstein).  Mr. K. began contributing to The New Yorker in 2014. See some of his work here

And speaking of J.A.K., the cover for an upcoming book he’s illustrated has been posted. The White Man’s Guide To White Male Writers of the Western Canon by Dana Schwartz, will be out November 5th, from Harper Perennial.

 

 

 

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Cast Recording In The Works For Peter Arno’s Hit Play, The New Yorkers

From the Never Saw This Comin’ Dept.: Playbill reports that a recording of the music from the  1930 Peter Arno play, The New Yorkers is in the works. The music was written by an up and coming composer, Cole Porter. If you want to know much much more about the play and Arno, there’s always this. Listen here to a 1939 version of “Love For Sale” — the infamous song from the play.

The Tilley Watch: The New Yorker Issue Of April 1, 2019; MoCCA Fest Event Of Note: Mort Gerberg And Friends (Danny Shanahan, Marisa Acocella, Bob Eckstein, And Michael Maslin); Today’s New Yorker Daily Cartoonist: Christopher Weyant; Today’s Bonus Daily Cartoonist: Barry Blitt

The Cover: it’s a treat to have Bruce McCall’s work back on the cover. You can read about it here (and see an early version of the cover).

The Cartoonists:

The Cartoons:

And speaking of treats, here are some of this issue’s cartoons that especially caught my eye:

Chris Weyant’s plumbing drawing (p.52). It reminded me, in the best possible way, of Jack Ziegler’s classic 1980 drawing Plumbing Trouble of the Gods. Mr. Weyant has delivered a funny, perfectly handled drawing. 

And then there’s David Borchart’s terrific giraffe drawing (p. 66). Perhaps this is the start of something big? Giraffes have never been anywhere as popular as cats and dogs in the cartoon universe (Lars Kenseth has drawn a very funny pug(?) in his all-dog cartoon on page 35). 

Finally, what a blast to come upon George Booth’s drawing in this issue (it’s on page 59). It’s a sunny day when Mr. Booth’s work appears (it’s worth mentioning again here on the Spill that Mr. Booth is the subject of an in-progress documentary film).

Applause for all.

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There are several drawings in the issue that, for some, might require Googling. I’ve always been a believer in “getting” a drawing without assistance. If I don’t get it, I move on (or occasionally ask a friend for help).  Of course, not getting certain New Yorker cartoons is age-old.

A note: this week’s Talk section includes a Sketchpad (it features a color “illustration” by Emily Flake).  A usage reminiscent of the comic strips briefly brought in during the early 1990s under Tina Brown. The Brown era comic strips ran across the entire width of each page (i.e., 6 columns wide), whereas this Sketchpad is 4 columns wide. Below: an example of a strip from the past: a Victoria Roberts piece from the issue of March 28, 1994.

Finally, the beautiful Rea Irvin masthead continues to remain in storage — not even brought out  as some kind of tease for this April 1st issue.  Well, here it is below, as it will be weekly until it reappears in the magazine (I can dream, can’t I?). 

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MoCCA Fest Event Of Note: Mort Gerberg and Friends: Danny Shanahan, Marisa Acocella, and Bob Eckstein. Panel moderated by Michael Maslin

The upcoming Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art (otherwise known as MoCCA) will begin its 2019 Festival on April 6th. A number of New Yorker folks will be participating (and I will note them as the information becomes available). Here’s the announcement of one that just came into the Spill:

 

Mort Gerberg and Friends

 

Mort Gerberg broke into print with irreverent drawings in The Realist in the early ’60s. His social-justice-minded—and bitingly funny—cartoons subsequently appeared in magazines including The New Yorker, Playboy, and the Saturday Evening Post. As a reporter, he’s sketched historic scenes including the women’s marches of the ’60s and the 1968 Democratic National Convention.

He is currently the subject of a retrospective exhibit at the New-York Historical Society, and Fantagraphics Underground Press has recently published the retrospective book Mort Gerberg On the Scene: A 50-Year Cartoon Chronicle. Gerberg will discuss his work in a conversation with friends and colleagues, led by Michael Maslin (Inkspill, The New Yorker) and including New Yorker cartoonists Marisa Acocella, Bob Eckstein and Danny Shanahan.

Garamond Room / 3:00 pm, Saturday, April 6th

Link to MoCCA’s website here for more general info.

Photos above, l-r: Danny Shanahan, Marisa Acocella, and Bob Eckstein

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Today’s New Yorker Daily Cartoon/Cartoonist & Bonus Daily Cartoon/Cartoonist

Christopher Weyant is today’s Daily Cartoonist.  You can see his (Trump) drawing here. 

Mr. Weyant began contributing to The New Yorker in 1998. Link to his website here.

And here’s Barry Blitt’s Bonus Daily cartoon  —  Trump-world-ish .

Mr. Blitt began contributing to The New Yorker in 1994.  Link to his website here.

 

 

 

Who, Darrow?

Lately, while rummaging around through my own New Yorker history, I’ve spent a lot of time re-reading what other contributors had to say about the transitional period of Shawn to Gottlieb to Brown to Remnick. There were a number of books,  all published in the late 1990s, early 2000s: Renata Adler’s Gone, Lillian Ross’s Here But Not Here, Ved Mehta’s Remembering Mr. Shawn, John Seabrook’s Nobrow, E.J. Kahn’s Year Of Change. It was the E.J. Kahn book that got me looking over the rest of the Kahn books here at Spill headquarters. 

I ended up going much further away from the late 1990s, back to The Harold Ross years, to 1949, when Who, Me? was published (it’s a collection of Mr, Kahn’s New Yorker pieces).  Either I knew who the cover artist was whenever I bought the book, and forgot — or I never knew.  Either way, it was a pleasant surprise seeing the signature “Darrow” way down at the bottom. At first, I wasn’t positive it was Whitney Darrow, Jr. , the New Yorker artist — the signature was very close, but not exactly as he signed his work at the time.

The inside flap confirmed it: 

Jacket Design by Whitney Darrow, Jr.

 

Here’s what the inside cover looks like:

All very un-Darrow like. Here’s what Mr. Darrow’s New Yorker work looked like the year Who, Me? was published.  The drawing below appeared in the issue of July 2, 1949.

Note:  Mr. Kahn began contributing to The New Yorker in 1932. Mr. Darrow in 1933.  Below is Mr. Darrow’s entry on the Spill‘s A-Z:

Whitney Darrow, Jr. (photo above) Born August 22, 1909, Princeton, NJ. Died August, 1999, Burlington, Vermont. New Yorker work: 1933 -1982. Quote (Darrow writing of himself in the third person): …in 1931 he moved to New York City, undecided between law school and doing cartoons as a profession. The fact that the [New Yorker’s] magazine offices were only a few blocks away decided him…” (Quote from catalogue, Meet the Artist, 1943)

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Tilley Watch, The New Yorker Issue Of December 10, 2018

The Issue: Ah, the Edward Gorey special issue! Juuuust kidding, folks. It’s not a “special” issue of any kind. I’m going to go out on a limb though and suggest that this may be the very first cover story issue of The New Yorker.* [and within minutes of posting this, Stephen Nadler of Attempted Bloggery, has corrected me, thankfully!].  If I’m wrong, let me know (it’s possible this may have happened in the Tina Brown era, but I cannot recall the issue). Historically the magazine’s cover has not reflected content (think especially of the famous issue of August 31, 1946 — the issue containing all of John Hersey’s Hiroshima. Charles E. Martin’s  birds eye view cover of folks going about summertime leisure activities offers no hint of what reading awaits inside the magazine. 

Although that tradition has been eased at times in recent years, usually due to the so-called special issues, or a very big story in the news, the reading inside (and/or the cartoons) is in relatively small parcels.  So to be clear, here is what I mean by “first cover story issue”:  the cover (by Edward Gorey) is mirrored by a significant article on Mr. Gorey inside the magazine (the piece is by Joan Acocella, the magazine’s dance critic). I do not recall ever seeing a New Yorker cover by an artist, or about an individual, carrying over inside the magazine in a significant way.  “Significant” is the key word here (you can tell it’s significant because I’ve now used the word four times). Six pages on Gorey, including a full page photograph, and an example of his work — 2 examples, if you include the cover — qualify as, well, you know… significant (now used five times).  As always, I welcome corrections, amplification, disagreements, denials.

This week’s cartoonists:

This week’s illustrations: there are 22 illustrations (that includes photos) with 4 1/2 full pages, and a six page spread with each page half given over to illustrations by Bill Bragg (so six half pages = 3 full).  So really 7 1/2 full pages of illustration.

Still missing: Rea Irvin’s iconic Talk masthead (shown below) hasn’t been seen for quite some time now in the magazine (since the issue of May 22, 2017 to be exact). For a small recap of its disappearance, link here.

*Stephen Nadler has pointed out the Tina Brown era issue of October 22, 1992 as the first cover story.  Josh Gosfield’s cover of Malcolm X, is followed inside by a lengthy piece by Marshall Frady. My thanks to Mr. Nadler.