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Krazy Kat and The Art of George Herriman: A Celebration Hardcover – August 1, 2011


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams; First Edition edition (August 1, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0810995948
  • ISBN-13: 978-0810995949
  • Product Dimensions: 9 x 1 x 12.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (8 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #221,430 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Craig Yoe runs the New York design firm YOE! Studio with Clizia Gussoni, and is the author of more than 30 books, including The Art of Mickey Mouse and Secret Identity: The Fetish Art of Superman's Co-creator Joe Shuster. Yoe lives in Peekskill, New York.

Customer Reviews

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I certainly enjoyed reading his book.
Scott Daley
It's from Abrams, a publisher known for their high-end art books, excellent printing and binding, and fine reproduction.
David Burd
The Gilbert Seldes and e.e. cummings essays might just as well have been headlined on the cover.
Brent R. Swanson

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Primarily designed as a tribute to the early 20th century comic strip Krazy Kat, Craig Yoe's book can best be evaluated more as a collection of George Herriman art alongside appreciative essays or remembrances about the artist and the strip that made him so famous. Although little to no criticism or analysis is provided in the 15 secondary articles by both Herriman's contemporaries as well as modern-day cartoonists, the book's inherent and long-term value is more as a primer or source reader on Krazy Kat with the full-page color reproductions of Herriman's illustrations, accentuated by short, vignette observations.

The book is largely organized and structured around a brief essay about Herriman or the strip, and followed immediately by a specific gallery of Herriman's art. If the book has but one fault, it is that the essays raise far more questions about Herriman and the comic strip than they answer. Leading the collection is a reprint of Bill Watterson's 1990 appreciation from a different Krazy Kat book. This may strike some readers as bizarre, as it seems that the introductory piece to this new study should not only provide a justification for yet another book on Herriman and Krazy Kat but also explicate why the artist and the strip have remained such popular aspects in the American imagination for nearly 100 years. Unfortunately, Watterson's essay does neither, and his claim about Krazy Kat being commercially unsuccessful does not equate with its lengthy, 30-year publication history that Watterson mentions.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By David Burd on December 14, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have to assume that if you're reading this you know who George Herriman was, why Krazy Kat is so important, etc. So I'll cut to the chase and talk about the book itself.

There are two things right off the bat that let you know this is a quality product. 1) It's from Abrams, a publisher known for their high-end art books, excellent printing and binding, and fine reproduction. This is published under the Abrams Comicarts imprint, a new line dedicated to the best in cartooning and comics. 2) The author/editor is Craig Yoe, who in a very short time has established himself as one of the premiere creators of books about comics. Yoe's passion for the subject and attention to detail result in a highly enjoyable book - a work of art unto itself.

Here Craig has done a terrific job of collecting impossibly rare art by Herriman, much of it having never been printed before anywhere. Not just original artwork for Krazy Kat strips but beautifully hand-colored pieces that Herriman did for friends, including one-of-a-kind birthday cards, framed artworks, and illustrated thank-you notes. Plus historic photos, posters, book covers and memorabilia.

Not quite in the category of traditional "The Art Of..." books, this volume lives up to its subtitle "A Celebration." In addition to the art are many enlightening essays by writers including Bill Watterson, Gilbert Seldes, Tad Dorgan, e. e. cummings, and Yoe himself. Each of them gives a personal perspective on Herriman's work that puts the art in a context. Plenty to read as well as look at.

Highly recommended for the Krazy Kat fan, and it makes a wonderful gift.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Brent R. Swanson on October 3, 2011
Format: Hardcover
In his essay, "The Assassination of Comic Art," Bill Blackbeard bemoaned the fact that "No creative talent...has left us a smaller record or his interior life, views, and artistic judgements than George Herriman. Virtually all we are ever likely to know in these areas will have to be garnered through the content of KRAZY KAT and other Herriman strips." Since the publication of that essay in 1989, all the "Krazy Kat" Sunday pages have been collected, and several odds and ends of Herriman ephemera have appeared. In this book, Craig Yoe gathers several of the strips and much of the ephemera to bring us perhaps an inch or two closer to the artist who might always remain distant.

The essays herein are a collection of old and new material. The "appreciation" by Bill Watterson, while perceptive and enthusiastic, is also a rerun, reprinted from the dead-ended "Komplete Kolor Krazy Kat" would-be series from 1990. The Gilbert Seldes and e.e. cummings essays might just as well have been headlined on the cover. But whatever their source or age, the essays are all good and very readable; it's great to have them available in one collection.

There are a few editorial misses that should have been caught. On page 33, Yoe tells us that Herriman carried on a flirtation with Louise Swinnerton, "Jimmy Swinnerton's widow." Jimmy Swinnerton survived Herriman by a little more than 30 years, so Louise was anything but a widow when Herriman sent his playful notes. A note on page 35 tells of a "Dingbat Family" strip created as part of a multiple-strip stunt in 1906, but the "Dingbat Family" didn't debut till 1910, so perhaps the year for the stunt was 1916.
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More About the Author

Vice magazine calls Craig Yoe the "Indiana Jones of comics historians." Publishers Weekly says he's the "archivist of the ridiculous and sublime" and calls his work "brilliant." The Onion calls him "the celebrated designer." The Library Journal, "a comics guru." BoingBoing hails him "a fine cartoonist and a comic book historian of the first water." Yoe was Creative Director/Vice President/General Manager of Jim Henson's Muppets, and a Creative Director at Nickelodeon and Disney. Craig has won an Eisner Award and the Gold Medal from the Society of Illustrators.

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Krazy Kat and The Art of George Herriman: A Celebration
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