I Only Read It For the Cartoons – Richard Gehr


 People who have to be funny become strange — probably the pressure. This book is chock full of weirdos; gifted, talented, hard-working weirdos. “Available for the first time to The New Yorker’s one million-plus readers: a volume dedicated to the individual careers of the magazine’s cartoon superstars.”


The New Yorker’s Most Brilliantly Twisted Artists

Widely considered to be the pantheon of single-panel cartooning, The New Yorker cartoonists’ styles are richly varied, and their personal stories are surprising. For example, did you know that Arnie Levin is a seventy-three-year-old former Beatnik painter with a handlebar mustache and a back decorated by Japan’s foremost tattoo artists?

Gehr’s book features fascinating biographical profiles of such artists as Gahan Wilson, Sam Gross, Roz Chast, Lee Lorenz, and Edward Koren. Along with a dozen such profiles, Gehr provides a brief history of The New Yorker cartoon itself, touching on the lives and work of earlier illustrating wits, including Charles Addams, James Thurber, and William Steig. (Amazon)

“Everyone who’s ever had their mind blown by a New Yorker cartoon has wondered about the twisted, perforated, skewed, and fizzy geniuses that create them. This book is our Rosetta Stone. It explains who these wonderful weirdos are, how they acquire their odd, delicious ideas, and how those ideas migrate fantastically to paper and then press. We are in enormous debt to Richard Gehr for tracking these artists down, for charming them, disarming them, and translating their lives and work into wise and elegant prose. Books like this should cost a fortune.” —David Shenk, author of The Genius in All of Us