Via PR, this week marks the opening of the “Will Eisner’s New York: From The Spirit to the Modern Graphic Novel” show at the Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art in NYC; in conjunction with this show of Eisner art, the museum will present a concurrent “In the Spirit of Will Eisner” show with Eisner-influenced pieces by many luminaries.
The Museum of Comic and Cartoon Art – MoCCA – is proud to announce that work by an astonishing roster of top cartoonists from across a span of seven decades will be on display as part of the Will Eisner’s New York: From The Spirit to the Modern Graphic Novel exhibition that opens March 1st at MoCCA.
This related exhibit, In the Spirit of Will Eisner: Creators influenced by the Legendary Cartoonist, will feature art by: Neal Adams, Sergio Aragones, Terry Beatty, Nick Cardy, Darwyn Cooke, Eric Drooker, Jules Feiffer, Michael T. Gilbert, Dean Haspiel, Al Jaffee, Klaus Janson, Jack Kirby, Denis Kitchen, Joe Kubert, Peter Kuper, Harvey Kurtzman, Batton Lash, Steve Leialoha, Michael Avon Oeming, Peter Poplaski, Joe Quesada, Paul Rivoche, Trina Robbins, Jerry Robinson, Stan Sakai, Mark Schultz R. Sikoryak, Art Spiegelman, and Wally Wood.
The art will range from a Cardy piece done in the 1940s for Eisner’s studio, to classic underground comix work by Spiegelman, to a Spirit illustration done by Jules Feiffer especially for this show. The organizing theme is that in some way, each artist was influenced by Eisner or his work.
This once-in-a-lifetime combination of artists’ work is a perfect complement to Will Eisner’s New York, and is another reason the exhibition is a must-see for anyone interested in comics and graphic novels.
About Will Eisner’s New York: From The Spirit to the Modern Graphic Novel From the Golden Age of Comics through the creation of the modern graphic novel (a form he was instrumental in popularizing), you will find New York City at the heart of Will Eisner’s work. Whether thinly disguised as “Central City” in the pages of his legendary creation, The Spirit, or more directly presented in his autobiographical graphic novels, New York was portrayed by Eisner as only a native of the city could know it.
This exhibition spotlights the city as reflected in all eras of Eisner’s work. It includes Spirit artwork, art from many of his classic graphic novels, including A Contract with God and To the Heart of the Storm, and original paintings by Eisner, as well as art by significant creators who were influenced by him, including Jules Feiffer, Art Spiegelman, and Harvey Kurtzman.
Historical context for the over 100 pieces in the exhibit will be provided by wall text by the curators, as well as by a continually running slide show that traces the evolution of Eisner’s work. Also on continuous view will be Jon and Andrew Cooke’s award-winning 2007 documentary, Will Eisner: Portrait of a Sequential Artist.
Like the legendary metropolis itself, there are infinite perspectives from which to look at and appreciate Eisner’s work. Will Eisner’s New York: From the Spirit to the Modern Graphic Novel provides surprising insights and moving revelations about the artist, his work, and his city.
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.