Friday, February 14, 2014

A 60 YEAR MYSTERY SOLVED?


    This Kirby cover, derived from Joseph Hirsch‘s painting High Visibility Wrap, has been mentioned in the first two monthly Kirby columns at http://www.tcj.com/ leading to speculation whether it was a swipe or a homage. The answer depends on if the 1944 painting from the prolific American artist was well-known by the average comic consumer in 1954. 

    According to my research the first and most accessible pre-Internet place to see the painting (along with 136 other war-related paintings) was a book published in 1945 titled MEN WITHOUT GUNS. You can read the entire book for free at http://archive.org/details/MenWithoutGunsAbbottPaintings
     I did searches of indexes of numerous publications but couldn't find any indication that the painting had been published in any of them or had been exhibited in any museums from 1944 to 1954. 

     Master Researchers Michael Vassallo and Blake Bell have come up with new information and a more probable theory of where Kirby saw the cover-inspiring painting.  
    The answer is on page 84 of 
THE SECRET HISTORY OF MARVEL COMICS:
JACK KIRBY AND THE MOONLIGHTING ARTISTS
AT MARTIN GOODMAN'S EMPIRE.

Saturday, February 8, 2014