Magazine article The New Yorker

Map of Saul; Portfolio

Magazine article The New Yorker

Map of Saul; Portfolio

Article excerpt

Never sure of his beginnings, the late Saul Steinberg invented the Romanian city of Ramnicul Sarat as a place "for me to be born in," and put it downstream from Hatteras, and not far from Laramie, Waikiki, and Juneau, in this 1966 drawing of the wandery river of his life. The piece, designed as a New Yorker cover but not run, appears at last in a new book, "Steinberg at The New Yorker," by Joel Smith, and at the current exhibition of the same name at the PaceWildenstein Gallery, each celebrating a unique conjunction of artist and institution. During a fifty-eight-year outpouring of eloquent surprises that did not quite end with his death, in 1999, Steinberg produced eighty-nine covers for this magazine, along with six hundred and fifty cartoons and drawings, and five hundred-odd spreads and multi-page features. Maps became a favorite Steinbergian theme--as did handwriting, labels, punctuation, numbers, sounds, Americana, thoughts (a fat, blocky capital "E" seeing itself in svelte Caslon type, with French accent), taxis, and alligators. …

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