Sunday, May 19, 2013

The Art of Rube Goldberg (Abrams ComicArts, 2013) New Book!

Web Exclusive! Here's a preview of the cover art for THE ART OF RUBE GOLDBERG comic from Abrams ComicArts in November, 2013.

I believe this blog is the first place on the Web to unveil this art! We've even beaten Amazon!

For the last few months, I've been helping out on this massive book, which is one reason my blog output (and my sleep) has decreased. Rube's granddaughter Jennifer George, editor Charles Kochman (famous as the editor of the Wimpy Kid books), and I have put together what we hope will be both an hugely entertaining and revelatory book. Rube is famous for his inventions (and the book is crammed full of these), but there's much more to his brilliant work, as this book showcases. Previous books on Rube Goldberg have tended to focus almost exclusively on his invention cartoons. Kudos to Abrams ComicArts for having the vision to publish a classy collection that encompasses the full range of Rube's life and work.

The cover of the book will be a movable, paper-engineered piece of art, created by the famed Andrew Baron. A Rube Goldberg cartoon invention will come to life! Here's the art for the front cover (the "smile" at the bottom is where you put your finger to make the cartoon animate).

The front cover art for The Art of Rube Goldberg -- due out from Abrams ComicArts in November, 2013

I'm deeply honored to be credited as co-editor of this book. I'll have an 11-page illustrated essay in the book (along with a few other short pieces). I've also compiled a bibliography, sources, and timeline. It's been a great deal of fun to immerse myself in Rube's world. Here's the back cover of the book that tells you a bit more, and features original art for a classic cartoon, "Try Our Patent Back-Scratcher" from 1921.

The back cover art for The Art of Rube Goldberg -- due out from Abrams ComicArts in November, 2013

The book is scheduled to be released in November, 2013. It will be a very large-sized hardcover book with 192 pages stuffed with art, comics, and all sorts of rare material from the family archives. 

The book will also feature an introduction by Adam Gopnick and essays by Andrew Baron, Al Jaffee, Carl Linich (my fellow screwball blogger and pal!), Peter Maresca, and Brian Walker. Best of all, Jennifer George -- Rube's granddaughter and compiler of this volume -- provides essays and personal commentaries that give great insight into the world of Rube Goldberg! 

I'll share more about the book (and some special "outtakes") in the coming months. In the meantime, if you want to learn more about Rube visit my special page on him, with comics, photos, and links.

That is All,
Screwball Paul


  1. Congratulations, my friend! I've been on the sidelines, and talked with you often about the book's various comings and goings... I think it will be an impressive book, and a good first step in redefining Rube for the 21st century! You know where to take it next... and I look very much forward to THAT book too!

  2. Thanks, Frank! One could say this book, um, reinvents Rube (cough, cough). I sure hope folks like it -- Rube's lesser-known work has so much to offer.