Synopses & Reviews
The R. Crumb Handbook
is a brand new take on the life, trials and ideas of one of the most influential cartoonists of the last 40 years. Wry, self-deprecating, and candid, this is an exceptionally revealing and unexpectedly moving visual biography. Crumb is thoughtful and enlightening, with insights into 20th century popular culture that are hilarious, challenging, and acidly satirical.
Crumb casts an unblinking eye onto the underbelly of modern life, an urban nightmare of human weakness, lust, terror, and cruelty all seen through the comic lens of satire. Simultaneously, he weaves in the surreal narrative of his personal evolution from his tormented childhood in the 1940s through his coming of age in the psychedelic revolution of the 1960s. With over 80 personal photographs, and 300 images taken from his sketchbooks many of which have never been seen before, comic books, as well as fine art from museums, The R. Crumb Handbook tells it like it is!
Described by art critic Robert Hughes as "the Brueghel of the 20th century," Robert Crumb has become the only sixties counter culture artist to break through into the fine art world and today attracts celebrity collectors such as Steve Martin and author Alex Garland.
Written with his close friend and fellow cartoonist Peter Poplaski, the new book allows ample room for the "father of underground comics" to express his ideas and opinions on a variety of subjects: fame and celebrity, art and commercialism, sex and drugs, age and death. And what visit to Crumbland would be complete without cameo appearances by Mr. Natural, Fritz the Cat, Devil Girl, and Keep On Truckin'?
At over 400 pages, The R. Crumb Handbook is the newest and best compilation of his most famous work. The book features over 300 never seen before illustrations from his sketchbooks, 80 personal photos, interviews, and a special CD of 20 songs of R. Crumb's original music. Cartoons? Photos? Music? All in one book? This is a valuable collectible that will be welcomed by all.
"Since the mid-'60s, cartoonist Crumb's artwork has been among the most recognizable in the annals of pop culture; his catalogue of characters like Mr. Natural and Fritz the Cat are as indelibly tied to their era as LSD and the Vietnam conflict. Crumb's true story is every bit as compelling a chronicle of his times as the provocative illustrations that emerged from his prolific pen. Many books have detailed his career, but this handsome volume is a must for the interested reader. It's a riveting autobiography that illuminates the artist's lifetime of foibles, sexual neuroses, cynicism regarding the spotlight of fame and his perceived status in the world of comics art, flavored with observations by several artists, writers and social theorists. The 400-plus pages fly by as the reader is dragged into the head of a troubled creative genius for an odyssey through a landscape of scabrous, politically incorrect caricatures of modern society that cast the bespectacled misfit in the reluctant role of a millennial Hogarth or Brueghel. Packed with photographs and some of Crumb's best known comics including much explicit and inflammatory material this is perhaps the most accessible and just plain fun of the multitude of Crumb histories. The book includes a CD of music by Crumb's bands, including the Cheap Suit Serenaders." Publishers Weekly (Starred Review) (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
The story of how a loser-schmuck became a cultural icon. With a free CD of Robert's music.