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Pointed Pens: Comic Commentary in American Cartoons

April 23, 2015 to August 23, 2015
Oscar Cesare (1885-1948) Uncle Sam—Capitol or White House? circa 1937, ink wash on paper. Gift of Valentine Cesare, 1992

Oscar Cesare (1885-1948) Uncle Sam—Capitol or White House? circa 1937, ink wash on paper. Gift of Valentine Cesare, 1992

Orson Lowell (1871-1956) He Admitted He Got an Entirely New Slant on My Stuff, ca. 1930, ink on paper. Gift of Jane Collette Wilcox, 1982

Orson Lowell (1871-1956) He Admitted He Got an Entirely New Slant on My Stuff, ca. 1930, ink on paper. Gift of Jane Collette Wilcox, 1982

From the maze-like contraptions of Rube Goldberg to the incisive political drawings of Thomas Nast, cartoons rivet public attention to issues of the day through their comic wit and visual satire.

This exhibition featured a fascinating collection of over 30 works created between 1880 and 1945, selected from the museum's rich collection of American illustration. It included cartoons by some of America's most famous illustrators of the late 19th through early 20th centuries, including Oscar Cesare, Charles Dana Gibson, Rube Goldberg, John Held, Jr., Edward Kemble, Rockwell Kent, Orson Lowell, Rose O'Neill, Frederic Burr Opper, Thomas Nast and many others. Their drawings showed a variety of styles and techniques that rendered incisive visual opinions about topical events, from political issues, business practices, and social morés, to even the act of viewing art.