Wednesday, December 30, 2015

The Best Attempted Bloggery Posts of 2015

Can you keep a secret? Well, I don't really know if these are absolutely my best blog posts of 2015, but they are my favorites. For each example you can go directly to the entire post by following the aqua links.

You Win Some...
Can you trust an Abe Books description without a photo? Should you spend money based solely upon it? I investigated enticing Abe Books listings on two consecutive days with interesting results. I plan to come back to this subject in 2016. Watch for it...
Old Possum's Book of Practical Cats T. S. Eliot Calendar for 1991
Signed by Edward Gorey

Kings Don't Carry Money Signed with a Drawing by Charles Barsotti
I'm the first to admit that I'm fascinated by minutiae. This book showed how even a trivial original drawing can bring delight. This is the first original drawing in a book by Charles Barsotti I've seen. It's nothing momentous, but it doesn't have to be.
Charles Barsotti, Kings Don't Carry Money. New York:  Dodd, Mead & Co., 1981. Front cover.

A Ronald Searle Valentine:  39 Steps...
I love so many of the artists on this blog, but for me it just doesn't get better than Ronald Searle.
Ronald Searle, 39 Steps...

I got this idea that I was going to show a bunch of magazine covers that might have been on newsstands in 1925 alongside the first issue of the New Yorker. It was a good idea, I think, but probably too time consuming to attempt repeating for other key dates.
Ralph Barton, "Meet the Editors," Judge, February 21, 1925

The New Yorker turned ninety this year. I decided to have look at what was inside the magazine. I kept it up for twelve glorious issues.
Rea Irvin, The New Yorker, February 21, 1925

Hallmark published annual calendars in the 1960's featuring artwork by Saul Steinberg. I was not aware of these until I started to blog about them.
Saul Steinberg, The American Sketchbook, 1968

In the magazine's second issue, art world luminary Eugene Speicher was caricatured by Miguel Covarrubias. I compared contemporary sale prices for nudes by both artists. Just guess who's worth more today.

Miguel Covarrubias in Bali
Carrying the idea forward, I unearth four different versions of a Balinese bather by Covarrubias.
Miguel Covarrubias, Balinesa, c. 1934

Edward Koren:  Do You Want To Talk About It? Personalized Review Copy
This copy of the book is embellished by both Edward Koren and Calvin Trillin. It may be unique.
Edward Koren, Do You Want To Talk About It? 1976
A not-quite-lost masterwork.
Saul Steinberg, Mural of Cincinnati

The New Yorker Cartoons of the Year 2014
I didn't review the 2014 annual until 2015. Now the 2015 edition is out and I haven't gotten to it yet. Some things don't change.

The New Yorker Cartoons of the Year 2014
Cartoon by J. C. Duffy

Bob Mankoff for President
Back in March I made my first Presidential endorsement. I should probably stay out of politics.
Bob Mankoff, Bob Mankoff for President
Signed drawing in The New Yorker Cartoon Yearbook 2007
This is the second caption contest I ever won.

Captioning:  Learning from George Booth
A lesson in cartoon captioning from the master.

Barbara Shermund's Big-Game Hunter
Presenting preliminary New Yorker cartoon art by Barbara Shermund. It's what I do.
Barbara Shermund, "Come, Toby--Mr. Macspratton won't hurt you."
Preliminary art. The New Yorker, October 20, 1934, page 23
Original New Yorker cover art by Charles Saxon is bought for a song.
Charles Saxon, Original art, The New Yorker, June 17, 1985

Al Hirschfeld:  The Algonquin Round Table
Everything you need to know about the classic image. Lunch?
Al Hirschfeld, The Algonquin Round Table, lithograph, edition of 110

Where's Miley?
My caption contest entry is the opposite of the winning caption.

This is the final issue from the New Yorker's first year that I got to review. From here it's possible to follow the links back through all twelve issues.
Rea Irvin, The New Yorker, May 9, 1925

Whitney Darrow, Jr.:  The Very Rich Collector
Whitney Darrow shows us what it's like for the art collector with an awful lot of money.

A Piano Recital with Whitney Darrow, Jr.
If you were a really good friend of Whitney Darrow's this is what he might have drawn in your copy of his book if you played your cards right.
Whitney Darrow, Jr. "You're Sitting on my Eyelashes" (1943) inscribed "Best regards to Button + Dave from Whitney"
Ex-collection the Mary Faulconer Estate
Scan courtesy of David from Manhattan

The Dutch Treat Club 1946 Yearbook
I still can't believe what Edward, Duke of Windsor, signed.
Signature of Edward, Duke of Windsor

Go ahead, guess what it sold for!

H. O. Hofman, The New Yorker, June 20, 1925

Macy's Fourth of July Fireworks 2015
This was perhaps my final visit to the great fireworks show.
The fireworks
Photo by Marc Hoffman

Norman Rockwell's Portrait of America
I eat in the best dining rooms!
Norman Rockwell, Portrait of America

Cartoonist Michael Crawford knocks my socks off with his paintings.
Michael Crawford, (after Chuck Close), Rauschenberg Minus Nebraska

The New Yorker Book of Political Cartoons Signed by Hillary Clinton
Don't miss this:  a cartoon book signed and inscribed by Hillary Clinton as Senator-elect. 
The New Yorker Book of Political Cartoons (2000)

Blog Post No. 1600:  "The Big Bang Theory's" Homage to Charles Addams
The geeky TV show makes a reference to a classic Charles Addams cartoon and your blogger takes note.

"A death ray?"

Two artists depict Ross as Tilley.
Al Hirschfeld "+ R. I.," Harold Ross from The Vicious Circle:  The Story of the Algonquin Round Table, 1951

License Plate for Captain Spaulding
Hooray for Captain Spaulding!

New Jersey license plate

Uncle Fester in a vintage ad for the New Yorker.

Delia Ephron and Edward Koren:  Do I Have to Say Hello?
Mr. Koren draws.

2015 Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade Balloon Inflation
America's favorite balloons get inflated.
Snoopy and Woodstock

Old Mill:  Arthur Getz Original New Yorker Cover Art
A rare blog post with both original New Yorker cover art and preliminary art.
Arthur Getz, Original art, The New Yorker, September 1, 1980

Lurch as Santa:  Daise Terry's Copy of Addams and Evil
With an original book illustration by Charles Addams.
Charles Addams, Lurch as Santa Claus, inscribed "New York/1947/For Daise Terry/Merry Christmas/Chas Addams" in Addams, Charles. Addams and Evil, New York:  Random House, 1947

Note:  Whew! See also last year's highlights.


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