The Art of Rube Goldberg: (A) Inventive (B) Cartoon (C) Genius
by Jennifer George (Compiler), Rube Goldberg (Illustrator), Geoff Spear (Photographer), Adam Gopnik (Introduction), Al Jaffee (Contributor), Carl Linich (Contributor), Peter Maresca (Contributor), Paul Tumey (Contributor), Brian Walker (Contributor)
Softcover, 192 pages
The Art of Rube Goldberg, at NMAJH October 12, 2018 through January 21, 2019, is the first comprehensive retrospective exhibition of Rube Goldberg's work since the Smithsonian's 1970 celebration of the artist. It explores his varied career from his earliest published works and iconic Rube Goldberg machine invention drawings, to his Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoons, and more.
Throughout his long career, Rube Goldberg (1883-1970) chronicled almost every salient aspect of modern American life. His work touched on everything from fashion and sports to gender, politics, and international affairs. This exhibition explores the artistry and wit that made Rube Goldberg one of the twentieth century's most celebrated and enduring cartoonists - and a household name.
Not many of us make it into the dictionary as an adjective. But then again, Rube Goldberg was no ordinary noun. He was a cartoonist, humorist, sculptor, author, engineer, and inventor, and in a 72-year career he wrote and illustrated nearly 50,000 cartoons. Goldberg (1883–1970) was the most famous cartoonist of his time, best known for his comical inventions, which were syndicated in daily newspapers throughout the world. Author Jennifer George celebrates all aspects of her grandfather’s career, from his very first published drawings in his high school newspaper and college yearbook to his iconic inventions, his comic strips and advertising work, and his later sculpture and Pulitzer Prize–winning political cartoons. Also included are essays by noted comics historians, rare photographs, letters, memorabilia, and patents, many reproduced here for the first time. Brilliantly designed and packaged to capture the inventiveness of Rube Goldberg’s work, The Art of Rube Goldberg is a coffee table book the whole family can enjoy.
From Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary:
Rube Gold·berg. adjective \rüb-ˈgōl(d)-ˌbərg\: accomplishing by complex means
what seemingly could be done simply ; also: characterized by such complex means. also: Rube Gold·berg·i·an
“Goldberg’s cartoons touch the edge of modern art.”
—Adam Gopnik, from his introduction