FINE ARTS

A Mile and a Half of Lines: The Art of James Thurber

Trillium. Sept. 2019. 248p. illus., notes. ISBN 9780814214008. $49.95; pap. ISBN 9780814255339. $29.95. FINE ARTS
COPY ISBN
Humorist, cartoonist, and author James Thurber (1894–1961) has been dubbed the Mark Twain of the 20th century. Rosen, a seasoned illustrator, writer, editor, and founding literary director of the Thurber House in Columbus, OH, collaborated with the Thurber estate and curated an exhibition of the same name at the Columbus Museum of Art. Commentary from daughter Rosemary Thurber, cartoonists and writers Ian Frazier, Seymour Chwast, Liza Donnelly, and Michael Maslin adds insider perspective to both Thurber’s work and life. Despite his art appearing in publications such as The New Yorker, on commissioned book covers, apparel, and more, Thurber’s renown faded after his death. Rosen’s massive effort is the first of its kind, and deserves to be the final word(s) on the artist/writer’s oeuvre, which remains, as suggested by Dorothy Parker, “infinitely beguiling, infinitely provocative.”
VERDICT With 260 drawings, chapters covering “The Line of Matisse or a Doodling Child?,” “Signs of the Hard Times,” “The Thurber Dog and Other Creatures,” a chronology of solo and group exhibitions, and exhaustive back matter, this volume is worthy of readers’ holy shelf and invaluable to Thurberites everywhere.

Be the first reader to comment.

Comment Policy:
  • Be respectful, and do not attack the author, people mentioned in the article, or other commenters. Take on the idea, not the messenger.
  • Don't use obscene, profane, or vulgar language.
  • Stay on point. Comments that stray from the topic at hand may be deleted.
  • Comments may be republished in print, online, or other forms of media.
  • If you see something objectionable, please let us know. Once a comment has been flagged, a staff member will investigate.


RELATED 

Get connected. Join our global community of more than 200,000 librarians and educators.