Thursday, September 07, 2006

Tribute to Gary Larson

I was introduced to the name and work of American cartoonist Gary Larson in 1988 (by Prof John Archer, architectural historian at the University of Minnesota). That was a valuable gift indeed.

Gary Larson is known for his “Far Side” cartoons. He holds up a mirror to humankind’s everyday idiosyncrasies, vanities and foibles, by reversing the roles of humans and other living (and imaginary) creatures.

Every thinking person should be exposed to the work of Larson. I thought his work was simply brilliant.

In 1995, at the height of his cult following, Gary Larson retired and stopped producing cartoons. His work is available in the various “Far Side” books.

Larson’s retirement – like Charles Schulz’s subsequent retirement and passing away shortly thereafter – was a big blow for me.

When I started net-surfing (in 1998), one of the first things I searched was “Gary Larson”. I thus learnt that he had personally requested his fans to remove unauthorised reproductions of his work.

After a long time, I opened one of his books yesterday – and was immediately absorbed and immersed in his unique brand of black humour and comedy.

I searched in blogger on “Gary Larson”. There are links to images of some of his original works. However, as Larson himself does not want this, I would like to respect his wishes and refrain from reproducing his work.

However, also available on the net are re-creations of his oeuvre: inspired by Larson, and in tribute to him. In fact there’s a contest along these lines, and lots of entries. I thought that was clever and fair. I’m posting two of these below, with many thanks to the artists.


kathy said...

We love Gary Larson! didn't know he died! I've searched the web also in the past for his cartoons and could not find any. love his books and calendars.

Very sad to learn of his death.

rama said...

Whoa Kathy, Gary Larson is very much alive. This tribute was for the living man! May he live long and enjoy good health and happiness, for the wealth of humour and mirth he has gifted to humanity! Best, rama

Kozi Wolf said...

Thanks for the Larson tribute Rama. I definately learned a thing or two.

April said...

Far Side was one of my favorite comics when I was in school. Sometimes I would laugh right away, and sometimes it took a moment for me to get the joke in them. But I always found them very funny and observant.

kathy said...

Thanks for the Gary Larson tribute.

kathy said...

I'm sorry i misunderstood! Thank Goodness Gary Larson is still alive!

samuru999 said...

I love Gary Larson!
Thanks for the tribute!