Stealing the Funnies by Elbert McGran Jackson

  • A boy and his grandfather fight over the "funnies" in this charming work by Elbert McGran Jackson
  • Appearing on the cover of Collier's in 1923, this piece showcases Jackson's talent for storytelling
  • Jackson was one of the leading American Illustrators of the 20th century
  • The artist painted covers for popular publications like Collier's and the Saturday Evening Post
  • Get complete item description here
Item No. 31-1367

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Elbert McGran Jackson
1896-1962 | American

Stealing the Funnies
cover, October 20, 1923

Signed "E. M. Jackson" (lower right)
Oil on canvas

A young boy is not amused after his grandfather swipes the newspaper's comics section from him in this painting by the great American Illustrator Elbert McGran Jackson aptly titled, Stealing the Funnies. Left with only the dull, newsworthy portion, the boy pouts as his grandfather laughs with childlike joy at the comic strips. The scene exemplifies Jackson's highly detailed style and was featured on the October 20, 1923 cover of Collier's, a widely-read weekly magazine from the early 20th century. Both nostalgic and relatable, this composition highlights Jackson's talent for telling stories through his art, much like Norman Rockwell, who possessed a similar ability to weave an entire narrative in a single composition.

Jackson was born in 1896 in Augusta, Georgia and took art lessons as a child on Saturday mornings. Although he went on to train as an architect and moved to New York city to pursue a career in that field, Jackson was still drawn to painting and began to take classes at the Beaux Arts Institute. Under the mentorship of the famed illustrator James Montgomery Flagg, his artistic talent was soon recognized by advertising agencies and publications, and he became one of the principal cover artists for Collier's, Country Gentleman and the Saturday Evening Post.

Circa 1923

Canvas: 29" high x 21" wide
Frame: 35"high x 27" wide
Stealing the Funnies by Elbert McGran Jackson
Period: 1919-Present
Origin: America
Type: Paintings
Style: Illustration

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