TagRobert Crumb

Rejected R. Crumb New Yorker Cover

R. Crumb New Yorker cover

Can you clarify the genders of the people on the cover, or is that giving away some sort of secret?

The verdict isn’t in; that’s the whole point. Banning gay marriage is ridiculous because how are you supposed to tell what fucking gender anybody is if they’re bending it around? It could be anything—a she-male marrying a transsexual, or what the hell. People are capable of any sexual thing. To ban their marriage because someone doesn’t like the idea of them both being the same sex, that’s ridiculous. That was the whole point of the cover; here is this official from the marriage-license bureau, and he can’t tell if he’s seeing a man and a woman or two women. What the hell are they? You can’t tell what they are! I had the idea of making them both look unisex, no gender at all. On TV once I saw this person who is crusading against sexual definition, and you could not tell if this person was male or female—completely asexual. I was originally going to do the cover that way, but when I drew that it just looked uninteresting so I decided it should be more lurid somehow.

A drag queen and a drag king getting married.

Whatever they are.

Do you think the New Yorker is homophobic?

I think it’s the opposite. The New Yorker is majorly politically correct, terrified of offending some gay person. I asked this gay friend of mine, Paul Morris, “If you saw this cover on the New Yorker, would you be offended?” He said, “I’d wanna hang it on my wall!”

VICE: The Gayest Story Ever Told

Cult Cartoonist Robert Crumb reveals he is a Gnostic

Underground comic artist Robert Crumb has recently joined the ranks of the perennial heretics known as the Gnostics. According to an Agence France-Presse report, Crumb admitted he was a Gnostic during a press conference for the international launch of ‘The Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb’. This announcement, along with his new book, reveals for the first time the theological leanings of an important cult figure. Crumb is best known for his ‘Fritz the Cat’ and ‘American Splendor’ comics.

“The Bible is not the word of God. It’s the words of men,” he said at the press conference in Paris. “I take it all as myth from start to finish.” This attitude was echoed by the ancient Gnostics, who saw Holy Scripture as a tool of dominance from oppressive religious institutions and embraced mythology as a vehicle for spiritual liberation.

Examiner: Cult Cartoonist Robert Crumb reveals he is a Gnostic

(via Wade)

A couple people have expressed skepticism about Crumb’s Gnosticism based on the article linked, and the article that article cites. Here is an interview with Crumb in Vanity Fair where he says very clearly that he is a Gnostic:

I would call myself a Gnostic. Which means, I’m interested in pursuing and understanding the spiritual nature of things. A Gnostic is somebody seeking knowledge of that aspect of reality. That’s more of an Eastern idea, like Buddhism.

More light is shed on his spiritual beliefs in this interview.

An Atheist’s Review of the Book of Genesis Illustrated by R. Crumb

r crumb illustrated genesis

r crumb illustrated genesis

It’s true what they say. Sometimes, a picture really is worth a thousand words.

Especially when those pictures are drawn by Robert Crumb.

And especially when those words come from the Bible. […]

Of course I’ve read Genesis. More than once. It’s been a little while since I’ve read the whole thing all the way through, but it’s not like it’s unfamiliar. But there’s something about seeing the story fleshed out in images to make some of its more striking narrative turns leap out and grab your brain by the root. There’s nothing quite like seeing the two different creation stories enacted on the page to make you go, “Hey! That’s right! Two completely different creation stories!” There’s nothing quite like seeing Lot offer his daughters to be gang-raped to make you recoil in shock and moral horror. There’s nothing quite like seeing the crazed dread and burning determination in Abraham’s eyes as he prepares the sacrifice of his own son to make you feel the enormity of this act. Reading these stories in words conveys the ideas; seeing them in images conveys the visceral impact. It makes it all seem vividly, immediately, humanly real. […]

And so, when it came to illustrating the freakier and more unsettling aspects of the narrative, he pulled no punches. The multiple marriages, the concubines, the brutal wars, the enslavements, Jacob extorting Esau out of his birthright, Abraham lying to the Pharaoh and saying that his wife was his sister, Noah’s Lot’s daughters getting him drunk and screwing him, the deliberate deception and massacre of an entire town, Joseph taking advantage of famine and drought to seize the wealth of an entire region… it’s all here, fleshed out in blood and sweat and tears, in vivid, unforgettable, often nightmarish detail. It’s really hard to see all that, and still see this book as a divinely inspired guide to living an ethical life. It’s really hard to see all that, and see this book as anything other than a story of survival and conquest in a brutal and bloody period of human history.

Alternet: An Atheist’s Review of the Book of Genesis Illustrated by a Legendary Comics Artist

(via Paul)

Buy on Amazon.

Robert Crumb on Philip K. Dick

Infamous comic artist Robert Crumb did a comic adaption of infamous science fiction author Philip K. Dick’s “religious experience” for Weirdo Magazine– and you can now find it online!

Philip K. Dick Fans: Weirdo

(via Boing Boing).

You can also find this comic on Scribd here.

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