I have never seen an artist that could draw pen & ink equal to Thomas Nast, switch gears and paint watercolor on the level of Degas and John Singer Sargent. Well, meet David Levine.
ABOUT Born in 1926 in Brooklyn, NY David Levine studied painting at Pratt Institute and the Tyler School of Art in Philadelphia. Levine's first love was painting and he went back to nyc to study with the abstract expressionist Hans Hofmann. For more than fifty years, David Levine has satirized the celebrated and the notorious within the realms of politics, literature, history, sports, fine art and popular culture. Instantly recognizable for both their trenchant wit and signature crosshatching,
Levine’s incisive drawings have themselves become part of the cultural landscape. One of the world’s foremost caricatures and draughtsman, Levine’s work has appeared in Time, Newsweek, Esquire, Playboy, The New Yorker, New York Magazine, The Nation and, for more than fifty years. Mr. Levine’s drawings never seemed overly whimsical, like those of Al Hirschfeld . They didn’t celebrate neurotic self-consciousness, like Jules Feiffer’s. He wasn’t attracted to the macabre, the way Edward Gorey. His work didn’t possess the arch social consciousness of Edward Sorel’s, Nor was he interested, as Roz Chast is, in the humorous absurdity of quotidian modern life. But in both style and mood, Mr. Levine was as distinct an artist and commentator as any of his well-known contemporaries. His work was not only witty but serious, not only biting but deeply informed, and artful in a painterly sense as well as a literate one. Those qualities led many to suggest that he was the heir of the 19th-century masters of the illustration, Honoré Daumier and Thomas Nast. He was also a master with watercolor, his paintings have been exhibited extensively in galleries and museums throughout the world.
Levine drawing in his studio
I attended a DAVID LEVINE watercolor show in NYC back 85' and was blown away.
I was given this book by my Aunt (also wonderful watercolorist and art educator) back when I was about 14 years old. I must have looked at it 100,000 times since. If you can find it, get it!
David on the beach in Coney Island, getting ready to paint.
In his studio
Thanks for all the awesome work D. L.
You will be missed.
dedicated to Glady Yourman