Mad Art : A Visual Celebration of the Art of Mad Magazine and the Idiots Who Create It

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9780823030804: Mad Art : A Visual Celebration of the Art of Mad Magazine and the Idiots Who Create It

The year 2002 marks the 50th anniversary of MAD Magazine, America's longest-running periodical of humor and satire. Throughout its long history, one of the most immediate, defining, and influential aspects of MAD has been its unique art; the magazine is a treasury of illustrated humor. MAD Art is a hilarious look at five decades of America's premiere showcase for parody, satire, and wit. All of MAD's "Usual Gang of Idiots" are represented, beginning with Harvey Kurtzman and Will Elder and continuing on through more recent Idiots like Richard Williams and Hermann Mejia. MAD fans will find fascinating one-on-one discussions with veteran MAD artists about their favorite pieces, stylistic influences, and the references they used in creating their art. Also included are quotes from artists about each other's work, like Sam Viviano's comments on Mort Drucker, Tom Bunk's conversation about Basil Wolverton, and many more. MAD's writers are essential to its success-and readers will discover captivating personal interviews with the writers who helped create the side-splitting text accompanying the illustrations. There is also a section on the talented writer/artists, such as Al Jaffee, John Caldwell, and Sergio AragonŽs, who write as well as illustrate their own material. Finally, this authorized guide through MAD history includes a treasury of MAD's infamous advertising parodies; samples of classic cover and interior art; and dozens of rare and never-before-seen preliminary sketches, photos, and much more. The quintessential reference for every devoted MAD fanatic!

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About the Author:

Mark Evanier is a writer and a historian on the subjects of cartooning and entertainment. A former assistant to the legendary cartoonist Jack Kirby, Evanier went on to write comic books for Disney, Gold Key, DC Comics, and Eclipse, and collaborates with MAD artist Sergio AragonŽs on Groo the Wanderer. He lives in Los Angeles, California. MAD and all related indicia (r) and (c) 2002 E. C. Publications Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

About the shape and weight of a telephone directory, this book has room enough to live up to its subtitle-and more. It begins with legendary cartoonist Harvey Kurtzman and his creation of Mad as a humor comic book in 1952 and continues to the present, artist by artist. Early artists tend to get more space because they helped create the magazine's style and also because some of them have continued to contribute drawings for decades. Jack Davis and Mort Drucker, for example, are each allotted eight pages, enough for an irreverent but affectionate biographical write-up and a variety of art samples. Lesser, later artists get a paragraph and one panel. Along the way, Evanier gives a lot of background information about the comics industry and about the process by which Mad has been produced. In short, this is a book for people who are curious about individual artists, the history of Mad magazine or comics as a business. Mad's success for half a century shows it has mastered the knack of laughing with its targets while laughing at them. Indeed, many of the celebrities the magazine has skewered over the years have felt flattered to find themselves the subjects of Mad caricatures. It helps that so much of the magazine focuses on relatively nonthreatening subjects, such as popular culture and suburbia. The only political commentary cutting enough to draw blood is on Ronald Reagan. But clearly the Mad staff knows what it's doing and has been doing it extremely well.
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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