Sunday, January 07, 2007

Cartoon Limbo Reception

Friday, January 5, 2006. The Venu Gallery, New York City.

Some photos of the Cartoon Limbo exhibit curated by Lewis Matheney. It was very well attended, despite some spotty rain.

Bunny Hoest, Sam Gross, Mike Lynch. Sam was not part of the exhibit, he just came to look at other cartoonists' rejections!

Bill Hoest used to ride in to Manhattan from Long Island on his motorcycle (more often than not with Bunny along for the ride) to do the rounds at the magazines. One time, when Sam's daughter was a little kid, Bill was visiting the Grosses, and gave her a ride. It was her first motorcycle ride and it was thrilling. "After that, Bill Hoest could do no wrong in her eyes," Sam adds.

Stan Goldberg strikes a demure pose in front of his work.

One of the many rejections from the Hoest/Reiner team. A lot of the gags looked good to me! There were maybe 2 dozen on display, most of them pencil roughs.

Sam G. taking in Stan G.'s work.

Ruth Marcus' papercut technique was on display.

A Ruth Marcus cartoon: "They say when she was down south -- she had the implant."

A number of rejected comic strip ideas through the years from Irwin Hasen. Hey, the guy in the dark suit looks conspicuously like its cartoonist!

Another from Irwin. A domestic drama drawn in an almost Caniff-style.

Woody Guthrie liked to draw too! Who knew?

An April 2004 cartoon from Jeff Danziger that was not published. But, I think it was offered by his syndicate regardless, and got some attention at the time.

I was following Sam around. Here he is with veteran gag cartoonist (and blogger) Eli Stein.

Despite the logo, this was a never-sold New Yorker cover drawing by the great Art Cumings.

Friend and bon vivant Jim Salicrup dropped by and we watched a short film about James Thurber that continuously shows in the gallery. Lewis told me he got it from OSU, and there are bits on an Omnibus interview with Thurber conducted by Alistair Cooke. Thurber talks about his blindness. As a child, Thurber was accidentally shot in the eye by his brother when they played "William Tell." His remaining eye weakened and, through the years, a creeping blindness manifested.

In another filmed interview, Mark Van Doren adds that Thurber confessed to him that his blindness was a punishment for writing about meanness. Van Doren said he had to do some fast thinking. Thurber was weeping. "You are for goodness and strength, but you reveal it in the opposite," Van Doren mustered. Thurber thought about this. "You saved my life."

There is some footage of Thurber drawing a dog, and then handing it to Helen Wismer, his second wife, who fills in the dots for eyes and nose. This was standard operating procedure Thurber drawing process for a time.

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