Monday, November 26, 2018

Matías Santoyo's Return

What's old is new again. This week the new New Yorker cover is an old one, reprinted from 1927. The artist is Matías Santoyo and this was his only New Yorker cover. It's a wonderful cover, of course. I just don't see any reason the magazine can't buy new work with this sort of energy. The city remains a vibrant place. The magazine's artists could capture it if the editors weren't so intent on reflecting the Trump Zeitgeist with nearly every cover.

Art editor Françoise Mouly writes, "For the December 3, 2018 issue, we have turned to the archives and reprinted a cover for the first time." That's rubbish, of course. For decades The New Yorker reprinted Rea Irvin's classic first cover featuring the dandy we now call Eustace Tilley for the annual anniversary issue. It was a tradition honored by each of the magazine's art editors until Ms. Mouly. The anniversary issue covers under her tenure have been for the most part well worth forgetting.

Incidentally, The New Yorker cost fifteen cents in 1927. Adjusted for inflation, that's $2.16 in 2017 dollars, not today's $8.99 newsstand price. So if the magazine's cover price seems just a tad on the high side now, that's because it is.


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