Synopses & Reviews
Not many of us make it into the dictionary as an adjective. But then again, Rube Goldberg was no ordinary noun. He was a cartoonist, humorist, sculptor, author, engineer, and inventor, and in a 72-year career he wrote and illustrated nearly 50,000 cartoons. Goldberg (1883and#8211;1970) was the most famous cartoonist of his time, best known for his comical inventions, which were syndicated in daily newspapers throughout the world. Author Jennifer George celebrates all aspects of her grandfatherand#8217;s career, from his very first published drawings in his high school newspaper and college yearbook to his iconic inventions, his comic strips and advertising work, and his later sculpture and Pulitzer Prizeand#8211;winning political cartoons. Also included are essays by noted comics historians, rare photographs, letters, memorabilia, and patents, many reproduced here for the first time. Brilliantly designed and packaged to capture the inventiveness of Rube Goldbergand#8217;s work, The Art of Rube Goldberg
is a coffee table book the whole family can enjoy.
From Merriam-Websterand#8217;s Dictionary:
Rube Goldand#183;berg. adjective \rand#252;b-and#712;gand#333;l(d)-and#716;band#601;rg\: accomplishing by complex means
what seemingly could be done simply andlt;a kind of Rube Goldberg contraption . . . with five hundred moving parts and#8212;L. T. Grantandgt;; also: characterized by such complex means. also: Rube Goldand#183;bergand#183;iand#183;an
and#8220;Goldbergand#8217;s cartoons touch the edge of modern art.and#8221;
and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160;and#160; and#8212;Adam Gopnik, from his introduction
"Though his tenure lasted less than two years at the publication, Harvey Kurtzman is the genius responsible for Mad magazine's design, cast of characters, and unique brand of irreverence. In this beautifully illustrated volume, Kitchen and Buhle follow Kurtzman from his youth in the Depression-era Bronx, through his early freelance work, to his big break with William Gaines of E.C. Comics and beyond. At E.C., Kurtzman aired his anti-racist, anti-imperialist views in war comics Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat. Kurtzman spent 'long hours in the New York Public Library researching' to create authentic entertainment that also 'compels contemplation.' Once he had a family to feed, Kurtzman embarked on a less time-consuming humor project, which in 1952 launched as a comic book called Mad. For 23 issues, Kurtzman did it all-'every word from front to back, and laid out every cover, each story, and filler'-and, ultimately, saved E.C. from bankruptcy. When E.C. denied the artist's request for partial ownership of the company, Kurtzman left. Eventually, he would establish three different humor magazines, none of which as successful as Mad, and spent the rest of his career doing a comic for Playboy. He remains a major influence on today's comic writers, and this vibrant collection makes it easy to see why." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
andldquo;There will likely never be another Rube Goldberg. Fortunately, his granddaughterandrsquo;s wonderful book ensures that weandrsquo;ll always remember this one-of-a-kind cartooning legend.andrdquo;
andldquo;Reading this book is like entering the offices of Simon and Kirby and rifling through their files, scouring the slush pile, even breathing in the smoke from one of Kirbyandrsquo;s cigars. Itandrsquo;s a museum in miniature, and like so much else these two artists touched, itandrsquo;s a wonder to behold.andrdquo;
andldquo;The book gives us fast and furious art from the early days of comicsandmdash;work done in an almost punklike frenzyandmdash;and itandrsquo;s fascinating to watch Kirby just warming up for his best yet to come.andrdquo;
Harvey Kurtzman discovered Robert Crumb and gave Gloria Steinem her first job in publishing when he hired her as his assistant. Terry Gilliam also started at his side, met an unknown John Cleese in the process, and the genesis of Monty Python was formed. Art Spiegelman has stated on record that he owes his career to him. And he's one of Playboy
publisher Hugh Hefner's favorite artists.
Harvey Kurtzman had a Midas touch for talent, but was himself an astonishingly talented and influential artist, writer, editor, and satirist. The creator of MAD and Playboy's "Little Annie Fanny" was called, "One of the most important figures in postwar America" by the New York Times. Kurtzman's groundbreaking "realistic" war comics of the early '50s and various satirical publications (MAD, Trump, Humbug, and Help!) had an immense impact on popular culture, inspiring a generation of underground cartoonists. Without Kurtzman, it's unlikely we'd have had Airplane, SNL, or National Lampoon.
The Art of Harvey Kurtzman is the first and only authorized celebration of this "Master of American Comics." This definitive book includes hundreds of never-before-seen illustrations, paintings, pencil sketches, newly discovered lost E.C. Comics layouts, color compositions, illustrated correspondence, and vintage photos from the rich Kurtzman archives
"The Art of Harvey Kurtzman" is the only authorized celebration of this master of American comics. The definitive book includes hundreds of never-before-seen illustrations, paintings, pencil sketches, and more.
Throughout his 25-year career, alternative cartoonist/screenwriter Daniel Clowes has always been ahead of artistic and cultural movements. In the late 1980s his groundbreaking comic book series Eightball
defined indie culture with wit, venom, and even a little sympathy. With each successive graphic novel (Ghost World
, David Boring
, Ice Haven
, Mister Wonderful
), Clowes has been praised for his emotionally compelling narratives that reimagine the ways that stories can be told in comics. The Art of Daniel Clowes: Modern Cartoonist
is the first monograph on this award-winning, New York Times
andndash;bestselling creator, compiled with his complete cooperation. It includes all of Clowesandrsquo;s best-known illustrations as well as rare and previously unpublished work, all reproduced from the original art, and also includes essays by noted contributors such as designer Chip Kidd and cartoonist Chris Ware.
Praise for The Art of Daniel Clowes:
andquot;Even if you're not an avid reader of [Clowesandrsquo;s] books and strips (your loss), this volume will entice and entertain.andquot; andmdash;The Atlantic
andquot;The real selling point of Modern Cartoonist is the art . . . some of which [has] been little-seen even by die-hard Clowes fans.andquot; andmdash;A.V. Club
andldquo;This excellent retrospective of his work from the late 1980s onward, edited by Alvin Buenaventura, showcases his visual gifts and always evolving style; his beautiful early stuff looks nothing like his beautiful later stuff.andrdquo; andmdash;Newsday
andldquo;A perfect introduction.andrdquo; andmdash;NPR.org
andldquo;One of the greatest cartoonists of the past several decades finally gets his due.andrdquo; andmdash;The Washington Post
Jack Kirby created or co-created some of comic booksand#8217; most popular characters including Captain America, The X-Men, The Hulk, The Fantastic Four, The Mighty Thor, Darkseid, and The New Gods. More significantly, he created much of the visual language for fantasy and adventure comics. There were comics before Kirby, but for the most part their page layout, graphics, and visual dynamic aped what was being done in syndicated newspaper strips. Almost everything that was different about comic books began in the forties on the drawing table of Jack Kirby. This is his story by one who knew him welland#151;the authorized celebration of the one and only and#147;King of Comicsand#8221; and his groundbreaking work.
and#147;I donand#8217;t think itand#8217;s any accident that . . . the entire Marvel universe and the entire DC universe are all pinned or rooted on Kirbyand#8217;s concepts.and#8221; and#151;Michael Chabon
The names Joe Simon and Jack Kirby are synonyandshy;mous with comic books, and their partnership ushandshy;ered in the Golden Age of comics starting in the 1940s. Together they created memorable characters such as Captain America and Sandman, invented romance comandshy;ics, and raised the standard for the genres of western, crime, and horror comic books. Over the course of three decades they wrote and illustrated several hundred comics, many of which are reproduced in this oversized volume covering all aspects of their amazing career. Selected and with an introduction by Mark Evanier, the foremost authority on the work of Simon and Kirby, and an afterword by Jim Simon, son of Joe Simon,and#160;the book includes artwork photographed from the original art in Joe Simonand#8217;s private archive and showcases the seminal work of Simon and Kirby and their artistry as it has never been seen before.
About the Author
is the granddaughter of Rube Goldberg. She is a writer and a jewelry and clothing designer. For almost twenty years her label was carried at Bergdorf Goodman, Barneyandrsquo;s, Saks Fifth Avenue, Bloomingdales, and dozens of other specialty stores across the U.S. She lives in New York City.
Adam Gopnik,staff writer for the New Yorker, is a three-time National Magazine Award winner and author of many books, including Paris to the Moon and Through the Childrenandrsquo;s Gate.
Andrew Baron of Popyrus Studio, Inc. came to the world of paper engineering following years as a restorer of antique phonographs, clocks, and other mechanical wonders. His books have won international awards, including the Movable Book Societyandrsquo;s Meggendorfer Prize.
Al Jaffee is an awardandndash;winning cartoonist and cultural icon best known for his work in MAD magazine as one of the andldquo;Usual Gang of Idiots.andrdquo; He is the creator, artist, and writer of the MAD Fold-In, Tall Tales, and Snappy Answers to Stupid Questions.
Carl Linich is a scholar, teacher, and performer of traditional Georgian polyphonic singing, and a member of Trio Kavkasia. He is also a visual artist who specializes in original cartoon art.
Peter Maresca is editor and founder of Sunday Press Books, publisher of full-size reproductions of classic comic strips including Little Nemo in Slumberland, Krazy Kat, and others.
Geoff Spear shot all the photography for Batman Collected, Batman Animated, Bat-Manga!, Peanuts: The Art of Charles M. Schulz, and Mythology: The DC Comics Art of Alex Ross. His award-winning photographs have appeared regularly in Vogue, Entertainment Weekly, GQ, Newsweek, and the New York Times, and on numerous book covers.
Paul Tumey is a writer, designer, and comics historian. His recent work can be found in andldquo;The Masters of Screwball Comicsandrdquo; blog and in Framed!, his monthly column for the Comics Journal.
Brian Walker has written, edited, and contributed to more than thirty-five books on cartoon art and is the author of the definitive history, The Comics: The Complete Collection.