Sunday, July 28, 2019

Edward Koren: A Drawing "For Charlie"

Admittedly there's not very much to see in an old thumbnail image of an original sketch by Edward Koren drawn on the title page of a copy of What About Me?: Cartoons from the New Yorker (1989). The book was inscribed "For Charlie/with best regards/Ed Koren" to an owner of Monroe Street Books of Vermont and sold by the recipient years ago, but the store mistakenly kept it listed online long after the sale, and that's where reader and Attempted Bloggery contributor David from Manhattan found it, saved the image, and attempted to buy the book for a very reasonable $40.

He received instead a different signed copy of the book without any drawing. So it's not a perfect world and indeed this is not a perfect blog. In fact, of the many Koren images to be found here, this is surely the least satisfying. And yet...

The minuscule image is tantalizing. It's clearly a delightful cartoon, even if it isn't one that is destined to change the world. It's a timely reminder of how many enchanting images of this sort remain hidden away in private collections. So something positive could still come of all this. Perhaps the current owner of the book will see this post and make a new high-quality scan to forward to us. That would be ideal. Or...

Perhaps the owners of other Koren drawings in other Koren books will feel inspired to scan them for us to enjoy. That would count as a win as well. Or...

Maybe those in possession of souvenir sketches, roughs, and published work by any number of other New Yorker artists will feel inspired to scan or photograph these works and submit them to the blog. There are a variety of ways this disappointing hint of an amusing drawing could prompt more wonderful submissions.

Even if it doesn't, this is a good example of how challenging it can be to collect and publicize images that were really never meant to see the light of day. But if images intended to be enjoyed privately can somehow become images appreciated publicly, aren't we all a little better off?

Please nod your head yes.

really don't think David from Manhattan intended to share this teeny tiny image with anyone but me, but I'm grateful to him for the opportunity to disappoint others as well. This is David's thirty-fourth contribution to the blog, but several contributions have included multiple books, so the absolute number underestimates his true impact here.

Quick Links to the Attempted Bloggery Archives:

Edward Koren

Signed Books with Original Drawings

David from Manhattan

Attempted Bloggery's Hidden Index


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