Saturday, September 14, 2019

Western Illustrations of Arthur H. Lindberg

Arthur Harold Lindberg

1895          Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, the son of an immigrant Swedish Metal Worker.

1909          At 14 years old, worked his first job at the Goddard works of the Wickwire-Spencer Company, Worcester. (Worked 54 hours a week at 10 cents an hour)

1915          Graduated from high school at the age of 20, took art classes at the Worcester Art Museum School, then studied at the Pratt Institute, Brooklyn.

1917          During his senior year at Pratt, enlisted in the US Air Force and served 14 months in France as a Sergeant-Major during World War I.

1919-22     After the war, returned to Worcester, worked at Wickwire-Spencer and resumed evening art classes at the Worcester Museum School, and then moved to New York City.

1922-30     Studied nights at the Grand Central School of Art, and the Art Students League of NY, where he was awarded a life membership for his superior work.  Studied under Harvey Dunn, Dean Cornwell, Frank Vincent Dummond and George Bridgeman.  Worked as a commercial artist.  Became friends with Girard Delano and a student of Walter Beck, who advised him in making his own pastels.

1927          Married Esther Perry Barlow, who learned to paint under his tutelage and became and accomplished watercolorist and was also an award winning quilter.  They moved to Long Island, NY, the new headquarters of Wickwire-Spencer.

1928-29     Illustrated Western Magazines – now referred to as pulps

1931          Daughter, Perryann born

1933-37     instructor & Registrar at Nassau Institute of Art

1937-38     Did illustrations for Gulf Oil Company weekly cartoon strip about the Mayan Indians.

1939          Received BFA at the Pratt institute

1941          Received BE in Art at the Pratt Institute, and moved to Buffalo, NY.  Took Art Instructors position at Kenmore Senior High School.

1942-43     Worked steel production in the summer in Western NY factories doing war production.

1944-45     Taught private art classes, did illuminated scrolls, started doing art restoration of paintings.

1946          Summer study, received MA at Columbia University

1946-48     Obtained permission from the City of Buffalo to enter industrial site (previously restricted due to defense work) and executed a series of fifty paintings.  He found beauty and color even in the blast furnaces of Bethlehem Steel.

1947          One man show at Carl Bredemier Gallery, Buffalo, “Our Industrial Waterfront”.  Received Frontiersman Award from Buffalo Business Magazine for the time and effort he had given to the presentation of Buffalo Industrial scenes in oil paintings.

                  During the mind 1940’s was voted into the Buffalo Society of Artists by its members.  Exhibited in the society’s membership shows and served as its president in 1954 and 1955.
Arthur H. Lindberg devoted his retirement years to art, private art classes, illuminated scrolls, cleaning and restoration of paintings, commissioned portraits and Fall painting trips to New England.  Increasingly frustrated and disillusioned by emphasis on and the support of abstract art in the Buffalo Art Community, he refused to exhibit his work for fear of being misunderstood and rejected for continuing as a realist in such pro-abstract surroundings.

He was commissioned to do illuminated scrolls for many groups and people in the Buffalo area.  He was especially proud of the scroll which was presented in 1955 to Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth of England.

Art was active with the Buffalo Society of Artists and was president for a couple of years.  He sketched with Art Kowalski, Bill Ludecke and Walter Prochoniak.
Art painted in oil, watercolors and pastel.  He loved to include water in his paintings and was drawn to the shipyards in New England, as well as the waterfront in Buffalo.  Another series of his paintings represented the area around Stowe, VT with its’ brilliant fall color.

1953          Did independent study in Sweden and Denmark, and was included in Who’s Who of American Artists.

1977          Died in Kenmore, NY.

1980          Retrospective show at AAO Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

1982          One man show, “Beauty in Buffalo Industry”, held at the International Institute, Buffalo.

1984          Included in exhibit “Buffalo Waterfront”, at the Charles Burchfield Center, State University College at buffalo, Buffalo, NY.

1987          Included in exhibit and catalogue “The Wayward Muse: A Historical Survey of Paintings in Buffalo”, The Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.

1987-88     One man show of industrial paintings of Buffalo’s waterfront, Linda Hyman Gallery, NY City, NY.
1988          Retrospective exhibit of drawings, watercolors, pastels, lithographs and oil from 1916 to the late 1960’s, at Art Dialogue Gallery, Buffalo, New York.

2009          Six of Arthur H. Lindberg’s pieces are in the Burchfield Penney Collection, Burchfield Penney Art Center, Buffalo, NY and one piece is in the permanent collection of the Albright-Knox Art Gallery, Buffalo, NY.
























[24] Mimi and Papa


[26] Shields & Co. Mural

[27] Courtyard Art Show

[28] Richard Nixon Scroll

[29] Arthur H. Lindberg Article Pg. 1

[30] Restoration Before and After

Previous Post:

Cartoonist Arthur H. Lindberg (“Lyndell”) and Gulf Funny Weekly 

Arthur H. Lindberg’s Gulf Funny Weekly comics and artwork
 have been donated to Ohio State University

Special thanks to Pam H. 

Sunday, September 8, 2019

A Crowded Life in Comics –

A Mock Feud In the Pages of Puck.

by Rick Marschall.

Show business, sports, and politics are replete with stories of feuds. I say “stories of feuds” because many of them are manufactured for the public’s attention if not enjoyment. There are, of course, bitter and long-running rivalries that have poisoned the wells of comity, certainly within families. In other spheres of life, self-interest or self-preservation usually triumph.

The old Jack Benny-Fred Allen “feud” attracted listeners and gossip for years, but the radio comedians were friends. Likewise W C Fields and Charlie McCarthy; but it is difficult to stay angry at a piece of wood for too long.

And we remember Ralph Kramden’s threat (in The Honeymooners) to a momentary opponent: “When I see you walking down the street, move to the other side!” And Norton’s response: “When you walk down the street, there ain’t no other side!” Somehow the perfect squelch, the mot juste, resonates more than love lines do.

In the supposedly staid Victorian Era, there was an example of “inside jokes,” sarcasm, camaraderie, and a mock feud that is funny today. I will share brief details here.

Puck Magazine commenced as an English-language weekly in 1877, a few months after founder Joseph Keppler launched the German-language edition. It became America’s first successful humor magazine, although dozens had existed, with varied acceptance, since the 1840s. Puck featured lithographic color cartoons – an attractive wrinkle – on its front, back, and middle-spread pages; usually political themes. The bulk of the cartoon work, including black and white social cartoons on interior pages, soon fell to Frederick Burr Opper.

Opper (1857-1937) was a workhorse of incredible talent and native humor who followed Keppler from Leslie’s Weekly, and known to comics fans today as the creator of many seminal comic strips around the turn of the century into the 1930s (Happy Hooligan, etc).

Almost from the beginning, the fecund H C Bunner was the mainstay of Puck’s editorial columns. He wrote the paper’s editorials and provided ideas to cartoonists; he signed poems and funny stories, and contributed many anonymous works; he recruited and trained a host of talented humorists for the succeeding generation. Unjustly neglected and forgotten today, Bunner was a master of the short story in the manner of Frank Stockton (another forgotten genius). The American short story of the day was a wonderful genre, now scarcely commemorated by limp rose petals tossed toward O Henry and Saki, but whose ranks were populated by clever writers like Bunner.

Many of Bunner’s books were in fact collected short stories originally written for Puck, and illustrated by Opper (and, chiefly, by C J Taylor).

In 1884, amidst the fury of the nation’s most contentious Presidential election, Cleveland vs Blaine, Opper and Bunner conducted a sideshow for readers through a mock feud. The national election was in fact mightily influenced by the “Tattooed Man” cartoons in Puck, depicting the Republican Blaine stripped to his skin, on which was festooned his many political scandals and sins.

The editorial fusillades that season mostly were Bunner’s, but the cartoons were Keppler’s, Opper’s, and Bernhard Gillam’s. Opper, relatively young, drew cartoons that sometimes were less than polished. In a letters column – “Answers For the Anxious,”  probably manufactured within the offices – notice was taken of an awkward cartoon by Opper of politicians attempting to stop a water wheel at a mill.

Puck’s reply (surely written by Bunner) thanked the reader but also criticized his spelling and grammar. Opper the cartoonist, however, was defended with faint praise.

In the next issue, “the artist” responded, angrier at the Editorial Office’s weak endorsement than of the critical reader. And the following week, the Editor shot back in mock dudgeon, stating that it was barely worth the time to wallow in matters concerning mere mortals – cartoonists. In subsequent weeks Opper fired his shots through cartoons more than words.

It was grand fun. Claiming the dignity of an Oxford Union debate, it spilled itself before readers like a barroom brawl. As I say, grand fun – no reader would have thought otherwise. But, again, in the stuffy Victorian era, such entre-nous peeks behind the curtain of kidding and elbow-poking sarcasm was rare. Still fun.

Some day, somewhere, I will reprint all the exchanges, insults, and mock threats. Here, however, Opper’s drawing of the theatrical “truce.” Naturally, he cannot keep himself from depicting H C Bunner (with fair accuracy, trademark cigarette and pince-nez specs)  as a coiled viper; and himself as an artiste crowned with a laurel wreath.

Original art from my collection, first the half-finished pencil sketch; and the “finish” as it appeared in the happy pages of Puck through the Summer and Fall of 1884.

RM 52

Saturday, September 7, 2019

The Same Old Invitation –

by Charles Green Bush

The New York Herald, Sept 9, 1894

Thanks to Mark Seifert for the image.

Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Uncle Wiggily's Adventures

Howard Garis and Lang Campbell, August 31, 1919

Saturday, August 31, 2019

A Crowded Life in Comics –

A Cartoon Archivist In Our Midst

 by Rick Marschall

Actually, a point of personal privilege, which most of these columns are, after all is said and done (or even before things are said and done).

I have worn many hats and pursued various pursuits in my vineyard toils -- writing, cartooning, editing, teaching; and in fields other than comics: cultural history; criticism; music; publishing; politics; ministry. Something has come along that actually combines several interest areas (or, I would hope to say, specialties).

I have been named Cartoon Archivist at the Theodore Roosevelt Center of Dickinson State University. The connected dots include history, cartoons, and… TR, a lifelong hero about whom I have written two books and many articles. I also serve on the Advisory Board of the Theodore Roosevelt Association, an organization I have addressed at conferences and for whom I write a weekly Facebook column on (surprise) Theodore Roosevelt and cartoons. In addition to all this, I named my only son Theodore.

I am happy with all these associations, pursued with evangelical zeal for a man I consider one of America’s natural wonders and national treasures. I have many thousands of vintage cartoons in which he is featured; and in fact for the TR Center I will engage in a “Cartoon-Off” with other scholars – displaying cartoons, explaining why we think they are significant (that is, good cartoons, not only good history!), and inviting attendees to discuss and vote. Bully!

I am not going to share contemporary cartoons here and now – but might do so in the future; and I invite readers of “A Crowded Life” in Yesterday’s Papers to forward questions, suggestions, and clippings in the Roosevelt category as in all other categories. Today I will just share a couple of TR images that are not cartoons (not supposed to be funny, that is), the “point of personal privilege,” portraits of TR that I have painted. This little corner of my life will continue as offerings for TRA auctions, and exclusively at the Western Edge Gallery in Medora, North Dakota, near Roosevelt’s cattle ranches.

So that’s it from Johnny Not-One-Note, sharing the news of an exciting opportunity. The Roosevelt Center is in the process of completing a remarkable project: gathering all possible Theodore Roosevelt materials – letters, articles, photographs, cartoons, and associated resources – all possible material from all over the world. Digitally. So, scholars will no longer have to trek to Harvard or to the Library of Congress or the Khartoum Institute, if there be such; as everyone, everywhere is digitalizing everything… the Roosevelt Center is arranging to be the go-to source of research material. And not merely as a vacuum-cleaner, but to provide annotation, background data, in fact metadata as much as possible. For this task they are assembling leading scholars, of which I am supposed to be one in the Cartoon Category.

Again, I welcome feedback and suggestions. One of the joys of this new gig is that I work from the office I currently clog; my current projects, and other future projects, will continue unabated; and that among those pursuits are the revival of Nemo magazine and the weekly strolls through this “Crowded Life” series.

No. 51

Tuesday, August 27, 2019

Multi-Panel Caricature in The Scourge –

George Cruikshank

The Scourge and Satirist; or, Literary, Theatrical and Miscellaneous Magazine was a text magazine published monthly in London by J. Johnston, and the strips were steel-engraved foldouts that came with the original periodicals. The Scourge published Cruikshank's first professional works. The editor was “Mad”
  Jack Mitford.

John Bull's Three Stages; or, From Good To Bad & From Bad To Worse, George Cruikshank, March 2, 1815

A Paradice for Fools; – A Nocturnal Trip-or-The Disciple of Johanna benighted, Sept 1, 1814. This is not George Cruikshank, like the previous. The print is not signed but the publisher is noted: W. H. Jones
Nebuchadnezzar's Dream, George Cruikshank, July 1815
Napoleons trip from Elba to Paris, & from Paris to St. Helena, George Cruikshank 3-panel plate, Sept 1815. The plate was folded to fit into the bound volume.
Early sporting cartoon by Geo. Cruikshank, steel-engraving, The Scourge, Oct 1815

Monday, August 26, 2019

A Crowded Life in Comics –

Cartoonists Who Paint.
[Charles Dana Gibson 1890s]
by Rick Marschall

Well, we have reached the half-century mark! Not myself – I wish – and a couple columns until the one-year anniversary, another milestone; but 50 Crowded Life in Comics peregrinations of events I have witnessed or been party to, and characters I have met, both inky and human.

A little diversion in this encyclopedia of diversions, here. Some items from my walls, the best of friends in my daily “life.”

Many cartoonists are frustrated or aspiring painters – and vice versa, believe me – and many cartoonists paint on canvas, or they sculpt, whether as creative cobweb-clearing pursuits or because they are darn good at yet another form of expression. And we all should be aware, and take encouragement, that artists often tend gardens or master their favorite cuisines, as outlets no less soul-satisfying than painting.

As a collector I have sought pieces in the category of canvases executed by pen-and-ink cartoonists. Following is not all of the ones I have acquired, but ones currently on my walls (therefore… please forgive odd angles and perspectives; and occasional reflections).

The creator of the Gibson Girl inspired two generations of pen-and-ink artists who tried their hardest to draw like Gibson (and most who failed before finding their own styles); and a generation of American women and men who tried their hardest to look like Gibson’s characters. His depictions of the Gibson Girl and her circle, 1890s-1920s, freed young adults from Victorian trappings like bustles and facial hair (in, um, women and men, respectively).

The first framed piece is a story illustration, watercolors – rare as a Gibson mode – in the early 1890s. The second is a New Years drawing signed to a friend, 1925.

Kemble was a relatively unknown cartoonist whose drawings appeared occasionally in the New York Daily Graphic and in the fledgling Life magazine, late 1870s and early 1880s, when Mark Twain noticed his work and offered him the job of illustrating Huckleberry Finn. The “fit” was perfect, and Kemble was continually occupied until his death in the 1920s – many more books; comic strips; magazine gags; political cartoons; advertising work. Except for genre paintings, in gouache-grays, for Collier’s ca. 1901-1906, his medium was pen and ink. His work was often classified with that of A B Frost (they both illustrated Uncle Remus stories), and I do not know what this watercolor of a fox hunter was done for.

Art critic Thomas Craven called Zim a “technical cousin” of F. Opper, and so he was; a master of characters, native humor, and comic invention. Zim’s medium was pen and ink… also the lithographic crayon, ink, and brush: drawing on stone instead of paper. Many cartoons appeared in color, but were lithographs, not paintings. This drawing of a rural black fisherman is almost 35 inches high, and in mixed media of chalk or pastel, and watercolor or tempera. I have no idea if it was an elaborate “chalk-talk” piece – that is, created in front of an audience – or was ever published. I am a Zim fanatic, almost a completist, but I have never seen it in print.

There are some cartoonists whose color work has lived in our appreciative consciousness. George Herriman’s ink-and-watercolor specialty drawings come to mind. But these mostly were presentation pieces. Jimmy Swinnerton, who was active as a newspaper cartoonist from the mid 1890s to the mid 1950s, maintained a separate career as a painter. His specialty, and honor today, was in Southwest / desert / plein air themes and modes. This is a study, not a finished canvas, done (according to the note over his signature) of the Salton Sea, the man-made (and disastrously designed) lake between San Diego and Palm Springs. As a run-off of the Colorado River, it quickly became a huge, fetid lake. Jimmy did not capture the “Sea,” but the other-worldly desert environs, as throughout the Southwest, is what attracted him. (He was sent to the desert around 1905 because doctors thought he was dying of TB; he wound up outliving doctors and many cacti too). My son has fallen in love with Swin’s desert canvases, and has studies, finished canvases, and sketches.

When the revised and reformed Nemo Magazine 2.0 starts up (consider this a construction sign) I plan an article about the cartoonists of the Armory Show. That 1913 exhibition in New York was the landmark show that introduced America, in large part, to the latter-day French Impressionists, to the Cubists, to early German Expressionism; and (to Americans other than connoisseurs and investors) names like Picasso. It was a revolutionary show in extent and audacity – almost overnight, new artists and new style and modes overtook American art and criticism. What is little known is that many of the ground-breaking American painters had begun their careers (or financed them!) as cartoonists – John Sloan, George Bellows, Boardman Robinson; and among the important organizers were cartoonists like Walt Kuhn and Gus Mager. Further, there were working cartoonists, famous names from the Sunday papers, who exhibited in the Armory Show, and were grateful to be there. Rudolph Dirks was one such artist, with three canvases at the landmark event. This painting is not one of them, but the canvas – nearly seven feet long – combines Dirks’ two lives. Probably done around 1908-1912, the oil depicts woodland sprites in his exquisite Impressionist style; and, on the right, chanching upon the arborial scene (of nymphs, perhaps?) are Rudy’s two iconic young Noble Savages, Hans and Fritz, the Katzenjammer Kids.

As a collector, I classify paintings by cartoonists as Strokes of Luck when I find them.