Monday, March 25, 2013

Igor's Dream Beer Label

IGOR'S DREAM, a Russian imperial stout beer was officially released by the Two Roads Brewing Company of Connecticut on March 23rd. This is the second beer label illustration I've created (the first was for McSorleys), this time featuring Russian-American Igor Sikorsky who designed the first American helicopter and whose dream obviously was to be featured on a beer label.

label art direction: Jordan Bochanis
original art, I drew the floating fedoras separately 
Two Roads Brewing Company announcing their latest beer
a bottle of Igor's Dream

Friday, March 22, 2013

"The "Celebrating Kurtzman" Panel

comp for MAD #1
On March 19th, New York's Society of Illustrators hosted a two hour, sold-out, SRO panel discussion and graphic presentation in conjunction with the current Harvey Kurtzman retrospective (curated by Monte Beauchamp and Denis Kitchen) "CELEBRATING KURTZMAN" with artists Robert Grossman, Al Jaffee, Arnold Roth, Drew Friedman, and moderated by Peter Kuper

It was a fabulous and fun night of reminiscing about the brilliant cartoonist/satirist/editor (MAD, TRUMP, HUMBUG, HELP!)
/writer/teacher, GURU, and all around cartoon renaissance man, Harvey Kurtzman. Many cartoonist & illustration luminaries, as well as friends, family members and ex-students from the School of Visual Arts, etc, were also in attendance.

Earlier in the day, Al Jaffee, Arnold Roth and I appeared on the NPR's Leonard Lopate show on WNYC to discuss all things Harvey Kurtzman.  Listen to the entire interview here:

Many HK related images were screened and discussed during the panel, among them: (click to enlarge any image)
I drew this imagined first meeting of EC publisher Bill Gaines first meeting Harvey Kurtzman in 1950, for a 50th anniversary of MAD feature 
Meet the staff of HUMBUG

Meet the staff of HELP!
L to R: Publisher James Warren, editor Harvey Kurtzman, HK's assistant,
curvy Gloria Steinem, business manager Harry Chester
(Terry Gilliam would join later)

 This was a group photo by Alfred Eisenstaedt taken at the 1971 
Playboy writers convention. Included among the many luminaries flanking 
Hef: Arthur C. Clarke, Michael Chrichton, Art Buchwald, Jean Shephard,
 John Cheever, Jules Feiffer, Shel Silverstein, Gay Talese, one lady and 
LeRoy Neiman. To the right of Neiman is Harvey Kurtzman and to
 right is my father, Bruce Jay Friedman. When my dad showed 
me this photo 
(I was 12) the thing that MOST impressed me was that he was standing right 
next to one of my all time idols, The man that invented MAD, Harvey Kurtzman.
 I would finally meet Kurtzman seven years later.
key to who's who
1975, the first issue of HK's class publication "kar-tunz". As I mentioned during the panel, the sole reason I chose the School of Visual Arts as an art school in 1977 was because Harvey
Kurtzman was listed as an instructor in their catalog.

Hk created this cartoon image to be included in kar-tunz the first year I took his class and
inscribed this copy for me.
ex-student visiting Harvey at SVA, circa 1984 (bad hair day for me) photo by
ex-Kurtzman student/classmate Mark Newgarden
Mark Newgarden & Harvey/photo by Drew Friedman

Arnold Roth, Robert Grossman, Al Jaffee and me prepare for the HK slideshow
many back-of-heads were in attendance for the HK panel

Arnold Roth, Robert Grossman, Al Jaffee, Drew Friedman and moderator Peter Kuper,
 surrounded by Kurtzman originals.
 Back of heads: (center) Tom Bunk, Joyce Jaffe

Arnold Roth: "Walking into the Angouleme comics festival with Harvey was like walking
into the Vatican with Jesus"
Al Jaffee: "I've been doing the MAD fold-in now for 45 years. If I'd have done it for Harvey, it would have run once. He was always looking for NEW ideas"
Me: "Imagine a world if Harvey Kurtzman had never existed. There would have been no MAD magazine, which means there would have been no CRACKED magazine... or SICK magazine. Unimaginable!"

my recently completed portrait of Harvey Kurtzman
This was my 2012 memoir on Harvey Kurtzman for the Comics Journal, "Seriously Funny":

All about "The Art of Harvey Kurtzman show" at the Society of Illustrators in NYC:

Thanks to Peter Kuper, Mark Newgarden, Glenn Bray, Monte Beauchamp, Anelle Miller and Ben Fentington. Panel photos by Ray Alma and Chris Boyle, among others.

Friday, March 15, 2013

The Caricature Art of Robert Grossman

Illustrator, sculptor, comics artist, animator Robert Grossman has had an astounding career spanning the last 60 years. To say he's the greatest airbrush artist/caricaturist of all time isn't hyperbole, it's an understatement. Picking just a few samples from his incredible body of work is a near impossible task (he's created over 500 magazine covers alone!), but I'm presenting some of my favorites. If anyone deserves to have a career retrospective/anthology it's Bob Grossman. Check out these beautifully rendered, consistently brilliant and memorable illustrations, most chosen from the 60's-80's. As Steven Heller wrote: "his mordant wit is never duplicated".

Bob has continued turning out wonderful  drawings and comic strips regularly for, among others, Rolling Stone, The Atlantic and the NY Observer where I was been proud to have alternated with him, Victor Juhasz and Philip Burke as a regular cover artist for 20 years (1994-2014).

Robert Grossman passed away in his sleep in March 2018 at age 78.

my thanks to Stephen Kroninger, John Wendler, Peter Kuper, Steven Heller, Jim Engel & Ed Edo Dennis

Robert Grossman was the editor of The Yale Record, and created this parody cover
of The New Yorker

Grossman cartoon from the Yale Record, reprinted in harvey Kurtzman's HELP!

art by RG for MONOCLE (1963)

comic strip for MONOCLE
First cover for TIME: Curtis LeMay/George Wallace/1968
From EYE magazine/1967
LBJ channels "Punch"

Mick Jagger
Ronald Reagan/Rodant

John Lindsay

Tom Jones

Howard Hughes

Alexis Smith

Mr. Spock

Chrysler chairman Lynn Townsend (Esquire)

Poster art for the "1970 Senators for Peace and New Priorities" Rally at Madison Square Garden held on March 12, 1970.  
various drawings for The Realist...

Tricia Nixon
Sammy Davis, Jr/Richard Nixon

early seventies NBC TV stars

From the Beatles Illustrated Lyrics book
Back in the USSR
Joe Namath

Hugh Hefner

From AUDIENCE magazine, the evolultion of a Playboy Bunny...

 A 1972 Chicago Sun-Times supplement.  The Marx bros are depicted playing "Pinchy-Winchy"-a game they played where you pinched the cheek of the guy next to you as described in the article, (right after mentioning singing "PEASY WEASY")


William Burroughs

Dean Memminger

Milton Berle

George McGovern/Richard Nixon

Richard Nixon/Charles Colson

Nixon & Kennedy

Henry Kissinger
Dick Clark
J. Edgar Hoover
Jimmy Connors
Bobby Riggs

Joe Frazier

Co-author of "Candy" Mason Hoffenberg

Colonel Sanders

Agent Sam Cohn

Jerry Garcia

John Denver

John Entwistle & Ringo Starr

Gerald Ford

Ford and Kissinger

at the NY Democratic convention, 1976 (New York mag)

Jimmy Carter

Jimmy Carter/Gerald Ford

Jimmy Carter

poster art by Robert Grossman
Children's Book Cover

Joe Paterno
Clark Gable
Marlene Dietrich
Laurel & Hardy

Various Grossman ads...

Earl Scruggs
Julia Child

unused poster art for "The Wanderers"

Steven Spielberg/ET

Jerry Lewis
George Burns

Jerry Brown

Jerry Brown

agent Sue Mengers
Cary Grant

John Lee Hooker

Elvis button
Barbra Striesand
Sigmund Freud on the Tonight Show

1978 poster art by RG

poster art by Bob Grossman

cover art for Donald Westlake novel
Ed Koch

Jackie Gleason/Art Carney

Ronald Reagan, Walter Mondale, Gary Hart

Monica Lewinsky

Robert A. Heinlein
George W. Bush

Barack Obama

Mitt Romney