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Celebrate the Career of Renowned Cartoonist Edward Koren

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Edward Koren: The Capricious Line,” celebrating the five-decade career of renowned cartoonist and long-standing contributor to The New Yorker, goes on view at Delaware Art Museum June 25. The exhibition features about 50 original drawings, many on display for the first time. Koren’s cartoons encompass an eclectic set of themes that he tackles with wry, astute criticism. With more 1,000 cartoons published in The New Yorker since 1962, Koren’s distinctive style and relatable characters deftly articulate the neuroses of contemporary society. Touching on issues ranging from parenting to man’s relationship to nature, Koren creates brief moments that portray man’s awkward rapport with the world. In contrast to other cartoonists’ political caricatures, Koren’s decidedly non-confrontational tone uses psychological acuteness and philosophical provocation to elicit laughs and stimulate thought.

“The exhibition complements the museum’s extensive holdings of American illustration from the late 19th and early 20th centuries, which are also on view in the permanent collection galleries,” says Mary F. Holahan, curator of illustration/curator of Outlooks exhibitions. “‘The Capricious Line’ not only honors the accomplishments of this beloved cartoonist, but also asserts his status as an artist.”

Born in New York City in 1935, Koren attended the Horace Mann School and Columbia University. He completed graduate work in etching and engraving with S.W. Hayter at Atelier 17 in Paris, then received a master’s of fine arts degree from the Pratt Institute. Koren pursued his love of cartooning while on the faculty of Brown University. Koren received a doctor of humane letters degree from Union College and was a John Simon Guggenheim Fellow. In 2003 he was appointed distinguished visitor at The American Academy in Berlin, Germany. In 2007 he received The Vermont Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts. The full-scale, heavyweight ink drawings in “The Capricious Line” have, until now, been experienced only as postcard-sized images in the pages of the The New Yorker. Seeing them at full scale highlights Koren’s mastery of drawing, which is all about the imaginative worlds it can unveil and record. Through this impressive collection of works, Koren shares the sheer fun and joy of drawing. His innovative illustrations demonstrate the psychological, philosophical and comical talents of Koren’s pen. See “The Capricious Line” until Sept. 18.

For more, visit www.delart.org.

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