American Jews not only created the original superheroes—they created the American comic book itself! “The People of The Book” became “The People of the Comic Book”! 🙂
Join New York Adventure Club and award-winning comic book-style illustrator and pop culture historian Arlen Schumer (author/designer, The Silver Age of Comic Book Art) as we explore the specific Jewish creation of the American superhero and its antecedents in older, ancient myths—from Ben Grimm to the Golem—as well as the significant contributions Jews have made to the medium of comic book art itself!
Why has Pop Art — a movement initially ridiculed by art critics and historians — outlasted them all to become, arguably, modern art’s most “modern” art? And why is it that works of the premier American pop artist Roy Lichtensteincontinue to elicit strong reactions from both his fans and his detractors almost 60 years later? It’s time to explore the life’s work of an artist that has defined the pop art movement for over half a century.
Join New York Adventure Club as we explore the verbal and visual history of Pop Art, and analyze the foundational works and artists that have come to define the modern art style with a focus on those from Roy Lichtenstein. Led by pop culture historian Arlen Schumer (author/designer, The Silver Age of Comic Book Art), our virtual deep dive into the Pop Art universe will include:
A discussion of the definition of Pop Art: the idea that everyday objects, motifs, and ideas from our commercial culture could be legitimate areas of artistic study and exploration
The origins of the Pop Art movement, and how its signature look of bold primary colors, oversized printing dots, and graphic faces and heroic figures took shape
The significant role Andy Warhol played in Roy Lichtenstein’s early career breakthrough
Why Mel Ramos deserves the very criticism that’s always been leveled at Lichtenstein
How works by Jasper Johns, Robert Rauschenberg, and James Rosenquist fit in Pop Art’s story
Jim Steranko has worn many hats in his career—artist, author, illustrator, art director, designer, entertainer—but he wore them all when he put on quite a show at Marvel Comics at the end of the Silver Age. It began in 1966 when, as a virtual unknown, he was handed complete control of a second-string Jack Kirby character, the James Bond-knockoff Nick Fury, Agent of SHIELD. He promptly used Fury as an unlikely launching pad for his meteoric rise to prominence, which would result in him being dubbed the Jimi Hendrix of comics!
Steranko invested the B-feature with a startling array of cinematic and stage storytelling techniques, wedded to the ascendant Kirby/Marvel style of in-your-face power. The combination was an explosion of alchemical proportions, and it blew the field wide open. Each issue, indeed each page of Steranko’s Marvel works—including a stunning trilogy of Captain America stories—was a supercharged surprise, as Steranko relentlessly, iconoclastically experimented with mixed media applications, fusing a graphic designer’s with an illustrator’s approach to the medium of sequential storytelling.
His influence on the field today is in converse proportion to the relatively small body of work he produced for Marvel between 1966 and ’70. Looking back on that work, Steranko remarked, somewhat rhetorically, ”After your fifty or sixty years are up, you’ll be able to look back and see this output that you’ve done, that will endure long after you’re gone, and will continue to fill the minds of millions of people.”
The famous skyline, buildings, and environment of New York City have been as much a part of American comic art history as any of its most famous characters and superheroes who lived in it, and whose exploits and adventures took place there. The very first modern American comic strip appearing in 1895, Richard Outcault’s The Yellow Kid, took place in the immigrant tenement slums of the City.
And up through the 20th Century and the evolution of the comic book and the genre most associated with it, the superhero, New York City would be the setting for so many of its super-powered protagonists, even if they lived in thinly-disguised versions of the City, like Superman’s Metropolis and Batman’s Gotham City.
This is a fun-filled webinar rated closer to PG-13 than X (or even R), because there is NO full-frontal (or posterior) nudity, whether illustrated or photographic, or ANYTHING that could be construed as overt pornographic content.
“Hot August Night of Sex Comics” is a sunny, silly survey of actual, published, mainstream comic book covers and panels from the past that simply have a sexually ambiguous, visually punny, indirect, subliminal, sly, even subversive sexual nature, sometimes allusional or double-entendre in tone.
Comic book historian Arlen Schumer (author/designer, The Silver Age of Comic Book Art) has been collecting such imagery since the dawn of the internet, and has now curated a wild and wooly webinar that wends its way through this cornucopia of coital, canoodling comic book creations, aided and abetted by Schumer’s always-arch narration and cutting commentary on every illustration’s gonadal graphics, phallic felicities, and naked ambitions!
Dog days of August getting you down? Then c’mon down to this free, titillating webinar—you’ll forget your troubles and come away whistling a happy tune, with a spring in your step, a lilt in your heart, and a stirring in your loins!
The life, career, and truly unbelievable story of American photographer Vivian Maier (1926-2009) gives truth to the adage that “truth is stranger than fiction.” After all, how else could one describe how a woman with no formal artistic training took over 100,000 photographs in her lifetime, hardly develop or print any of them, and die unknown and unmourned?
And then in the quirkiest of fates, have her works accidentally discovered posthumously, which would go on to receive global acclaim and fame? This is the incredible personal and professional story of Vivian Maier, arguably the greatest photographer of the 20th century.
Join New York Adventure Club as we explore the life and career of Maier, and how her esteemed body of photographic works measures up to some of the greatest photographers of the 20th Century, like Robert Frank (“The Americans”), WeeGee (a.k.a. Arthur Fellig), and Diane Arbus.
In 1971, Frank Robbins, already established for years as a DC Comics writer on their Batman titles, became the first creative talent to both write and illustrate a Batman story in the character’s published history, the first of five that Robbins would execute over the next year.
Then, in 1974, Robbins illustrated for DC four issues of one of Batman’s major inspirations, The Shadow.Both of Robbins’ runs created considerable controversy among fans at the time for his radical, stylized approach to “superhero” illustration, one that continues to elicit strong reactions, fifty years later.
So come and see and hear comics historianArlen Schumer(author/designer, The Silver Age of Comic Book Art)give a detailed and visually dynamic webinar on these intriguing illustrated works by Frank Robbins—and find out what the controversy over Robbins’ comics is all about!
At the dawn of the 1970s, legendary comic book artist Neal Adams forged brand new artistic identities for several mainstream comic book characters, including Batman and The X-Men, as well as two distinctive DC heroes, Green Lantern and Green Arrow.
Adams’ photorealistic visual acuity enabled he and his writer/collaborator, Denny O’Neil, to break new ground telling the kinds of reality- based stories that could be told in “superhero” comic books, and in doing so, made their Green Lantern-Green Arrow run of (only) 13 issues one of the most honored and esteemed, memorable and influential in comic book history, directly responsible for the 21st Century successes of the recent Arrow television series and the forthcoming Green Lantern feature film.
Special attention will be given to perhaps the zenith of the series, “The Drug Issues,” a 2-part story that appeared in the summer of ’71, concerning Green Arrow’s young sidekick, who had become a heroin addict, ironically befitting his name: “Speedy.”
Hosted by award-winning comic book-style illustrator and pop culture historian Arlen Schumer (author/designer, The Silver Age of Comic Book Art), this webinar will feature comic book panels, pages and covers that will make you look at those Green Lantern/Green Arrow comics as if for the first time!