Profiling – Cartoonist Chronicles210211

Antonio vs. Fidel and Spy vs. Spy

But he was always careful that neither spy ever defeated the other because of the limits placed on his work by Mad, according to his daughter Marta Pizarro, who accompanied Prohías to his first interview with the magazine as an interpreter because he did not speak English.

The magazine editors just needed to ask the Cuban who was trying to sell them his cartoons to draw a few images, to make sure he was the author.

The cartoonist left the interview with an $800 check and a one-year contract.

In honor of Antonio Prohias‘ birthday last month The Miami Herald profiles the refugee cartoonist. Though MAD must be mentioned, the article is mostly about Antonio’s cartooning in his native Cuba.


Charles Alston and WWII

Charles Henry Alston (November 28, 1907–April 27, 1977) was a noted African American artist and teacher. He is best known for sculpting the bust of Martin Luther King, Jr., on display in the White House, but his association with the federal government started much earlier.

From a few years ago the National Archives highlights the WWII propaganda art of Charles Alston.


Floyd Gottfredson and Mickey Mouse

“The Mickey Mouse comic strip debuted in January 13, 1930, with Walt doing the writing and Ub penciled them and an artist named Win Smith was doing the inking. After the first eighteen strips, Ub left and Win took over.

“King Features wanted continuity, that is to say, they wanted the strip to have a story and a plot because other strips like Sidney Smith’s The Gumps were very popular being “story strips”. Walt met with Win and told him he was going to take over the writing and Win who had a short fuse wasn’t going to be told what to do and so he quit. He came by my desk and said, “I think you’ve got a new job.”

Jim Korkis digs up an old interview with Floyd Gottfredson.


Historical Caricature and Historical Science

During this period, artists such as William Hogarth and James Gillray skewered the social and political tensions around emerging scientific, medical and technological ideas, from electricity to vaccination. The memes of their day, these images reached much of literate society and influenced public opinion. Before the rise of mass publishing, they were sold as individual engravings, often hand-coloured and displayed in shop windows to be appreciated by passers-by and purchased by the wealthy to impress house guests.

Historian Patricia Fara discusses the science of 18th and 19th Centuries as seen in cartoons.