“One of the qualifications for being President of the United States ought to be caricaturability. Obama, the Bushes, Clinton, Reagan: All were wonderfully suited to being drawn comically. And in that respect (if not any other), Mitt Romney is more than up to the job. A couple of heavy eyebrows, a black pompadour with greying temples, and a geometric chin, and you can take the rest of the day off.” — Barry Blitt, on this week’s New Yorker cover
“I like the idea of the Olympics because it’s such an international event,” says Frank Viva à propos of his cover for this week’s New Yorker. He continues: “And I like the contrast between the acrobatic delicacy of the tiny gymnasts and the bulkiness of the gigantic weightlifters. There’s a kind of hopefulness around the Olympics—that you can fiercely compete and still be civilized.”
“In Good Health” - this week’s New Yorker cover, by Bob Staake
— “Soda Noir,” this week’s New Yorker cover by Owen Smith (read more here)
“If you had told me when I began that I would have my work on a museum wall, I would have thought, ‘What’s happened to civilization?’ ” says Daniel Clowes, the artist behind this week’s Science Fiction Issue cover, “Crashing the Gate.” A retrospective of Clowes’s work is on view at the Oakland Museum of California.
“It feels like I snuck in a museum through a side door somehow. For all the painters and sculptors I went to art school with, to slip into a museum through comics might seem very clever and dishonest.” He laughs. “But now that I’m at the top, I can only go down. it’s hard not to feel like, ‘They gave me my retirement party.’ A big career retrospective seems like a thing you should only get when you’re seventy-five or so.”
A 1944 cartoon by R. Taylor from the New Yorker archives
The more things change….
From the New Yorker archives - a 1939 cartoon by the wonderful and little-remembered cartoonist R. Taylor
From the New Yorker archives - a 1938 cartoon by the wonderful (and little-remembered) cartoonist R. Taylor, who worked at the magazine from 1935 to 1967
“I was walking my dog in the park, thinking about graduation—just that whole notion of a big crowd of people all faced with the same situation, all these graduates going out in the world now, at the same time,” says Mark Ulriksen, the artist behind “Adrift.” “And I was thinking, ‘What other kinds of big crowds do you see getting together all with the same purpose?’ Penguins. And they’re adrift, just like these kids.”
Read more on The New Yorker’s Culture Desk Blog
“Since I draw more or less like a robot, it’s good to have something human to inspire me every once in a while. While I dutifully admire the manly, punchy gags of Peter Arno and Charles Addams, the “old school” New Yorker cover artists I think most about are actually all women. Ilonka Karasz’s bucolic diorama-like vistas and the unapologetic warm sentiment of Edna Eicke stir up fond memories of childhood with a tactile power truly unusual for drawings intended only for print.” — Chris Ware, on the New Yorker covers that inspire him.
See the covers in question on the New Yorker’s culture desk blog
This week’s New Yorker Cover: “Tag Sale” by Peter de Sève