Artist vs Author Exhibit at Society of Illustrators in New York

The relationship between an author’s story and an artist’s vision is being explored in the Society of IllustratorsArtist vs Author exhibit in New York.

Art by Harriet Roosevelt Richards, Oscar Liebman, Charles Dudouyt and Thomas Blackshear II – just some of the artworks in the exhibition

“Why ‘versus’? Aren’t the artist and author on the same creative team? For every case like F. Scott Fitzgerald gushing that Henry Raleigh’s drawings are ‘the best I’ve ever seen,’ we have also seen the author’s cherished visual concepts complicated by the illustrator, who may alter a story’s point of view, elevate a character, or provide missing settings and costumes,” the Society outlines.

“The illustrator is drawing upon a different vocabulary, a different history, a different culture. Any synergy is missed when an image-less edition is published. Then again, is the clarity that illustration brings even wanted? J.D. Salinger famously resisted all attempts to illustrate him,” their description continues.

Art by Henry Raleigh
Art by Henry Raleigh
Art by Norman Price
Art by Norman Price

The connection between magazine and book co-creators is showcased in this exhibit and sale curated by Roger Reed. It features relationships from William Shakespeare as seen by Arthur Keller, to Toni Morrison as seen by Thomas Blackshear II, to Arthur Conan Doyle as seen by Sergio Martinez. Comedy, fantasy, westerns, and mystery are covered, by famous and unknown artists and authors alike.

The Society of Illustrators’ mission is to promote the art of illustration, to appreciate its history and evolving nature through exhibitions, lectures and education, and to contribute the service of its members to the welfare of the community at large.

Founded in 1901, the Society is the oldest nonprofit organisation dedicated to the art of illustration in America. Notable Society members have been N.C. Wyeth, Rube Goldberg, and Norman Rockwell, among many others.

The Museum of Illustration was established in 1981. It offers year-round themed exhibits, art education programs and annual juried competitions. The Museum’s Permanent Collection houses 2500 pieces that are catalogued for scholarly use and displayed periodically. In 2012, they created the MoCCA Gallery with a focus on curated exhibits of comic and cartoon art.

• Artist vs Author continues until 22nd October 2022 at the Society Of Illustrators, 128 West 63rd Street, New York City. Web:

The founder of downthetubes, which he established in 1998. John works as a comics and magazine editor, writer, and on promotional work for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. Working in British comics publishing since the 1980s, his credits include editor of titles such as Doctor Who Magazine, Star Trek Explorer (previously known as Star Trek Magazine) and more. He also edited the comics anthology STRIP Magazine and edited several audio comics for ROK Comics. He has also edited several comic collections, including volumes of “Charley’s War and “Dan Dare”. He’s the writer of "Pilgrim: Secrets and Lies" for B7 Comics; “Crucible”, a creator-owned project with 2000AD artist Smuzz; and “Death Duty” and “Skow Dogs” with Dave Hailwood.

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