Wednesday, January 10, 2024

David Kunzle 1936 - 2024


Early comics historian and translator David Kunzle has passed away. His scholarly books on "comic strips before comic strips" of the 19th century helped cement the prehistory of sequential art. He added a new chapter in the evolution of the picture narrative and was a truly vital voice in its evolution. I go to his books again and again and always find something new and fascinating -- and funny. 

Antoine Sausverd has posted on Facebook: 

"David Kunzle (1936-2024) died on Monday, January 1, 2024 in Los Angeles. Art historian and professor emeritus at the University of California (Los Angeles), he is the author of numerous seminal works for the study and understanding of 19th-century comic strips."

Paul Gravett

"DAVID KUNZLE R.I.P: A PIONEER HISTORIAN OF EARLY COMICS I met David, a fellow Brit, several times, in London when he visited The Cartoon Museum in its first premises, Brussels for a conference at the Centre Belge de la Bande Dessinée on the origins of comics, and here in this photo on August 6th 2016 in Woking, where he joined me for a summer day to visit the exhibition on British comics I co-curated with Hamish McGillivray at The Lightbox. Another time in London, Cynthia Rose and I dined with him after he'd spent a day researching his last major book on British comics at The British Library. So alive and alert, he was joy to be with and discuss many cultural ideas together. Comics historians owe him so much."

Here's a link to his recent essential books from University Press of Mississippi:

More notices and tributes at The Daily Cartoonist

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