Saturday, December 8, 2018

Barbara Shermund: Level-Headed

When single-speaker captions came into their own—as opposed to the older convention of having two speakers exchanging lines of dialogue—it became practical to populate a cartoon with even larger groupings of figures engaged in conversation. The cartoonist merely had to indicate which individual was doing the speaking and which others were waiting their turn and doing the listening. An original 1927 New Yorker cartoon by Barbara Shermund from Carlson & Stevenson Antiques of Manchester, Vermont, is a beautiful example of this. Three long-limbed young women lounge outdoors on an impossibly perfect summer's day but only one is doing the talking. The topic, as it happens, is a fourth young woman who is apparently quite sensible, for a reason one might not readily guess.

"Oh my, she's very leveled-headed—her father was a lawyer!" 
Barbara Shermund
Original art
The New Yorker, July 30, 1927, page 18
Framed and matted, measuring 29.5 inches high by 34 inches wide

Cartoons by Barbara Shermund and Al Frueh
Note:  Editor Harold Ross's initial R, his personal approval for this cartoon to appear in the magazine, is shown in the inset.

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