Women of the Page panel @ The Frick

I made it through the Women of the Page panel at the Frick Art & Historical Center without tripping, burping or falling off my chair. Great news!

It was a fun night and I got to see the Draw Me a Story exhibit, too. Well, sort of. I wasn’t wearing my glasses, so I didn’t really get to read all the information that was included with each illustration, but I got a general idea of what the illustrations looked like. That should be something.

My favorite illustration was the one by WPA artist George Avison called, “Bucking Bronco.” It was the cover for the book Sunflight, and the original painting was matted and framed leaving all the handwritten notes and instructions visible. The book itself was displayed in a case alongside the original.

I also want to see (with my glasses) the sketch Maurice Sendak did of Max from Where the Wild Things Are. It was so small. I really need to wear my glasses next time.

The Chris Van Allsburg one is another one that is probably going to be incredible when I finally see it. All those details. This illustration was for the book The Z Was Zapped. I’ve never seen the book, but it sounds a bit like The Gashlycrumb Tinies in that it’s an alphabet book and each letter meets an untimely demise. And, as a type geek, I love the inside joke: The book follows the “Caslon Players,” Caslon being the font the book was set in.

As an aside, I feel terrible for Thomas Taylor. He did the original illustrations for the first Harry Potter book, but was dropped for someone more established after the book became a hit. He was only out of college for two years, and Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone was his first commission. Poor kid. You gotta feel for him.