Tuesday, March 4, 2008

What Jeanne Steig's Husband Saw

William Steig's drawings always seemed to plumb the depths of the soul. I kept this drawing for nearly five years. And now I have something I can do with it besides look at it every six months as it gained the dust and newspaper yellowing of age on my shelf. Never put away, always ready to be pulled down, in case I could share it with someone.

Jeanne Steig wrote then, right after his death, "Bill frequently drew men thinking. They were often leaning on rocks and their thoughts were somber thoughts. This drawing is a happy combination of rock and man, with a few leftover heads for good measure. Or are all three of them just rising up from the ground, over the horizon, already grim about what they might be letting themselves in for?"

Follow the link. She writes in as lovely a way as he drew. But the linked article doesn't have the drawing any more. It was sandwiched on the Op-Ed page, between Nicholas Kristof's "Secrets of the Scandal" about the Valerie Plame leak, on the left, and David Brooks, on the right, "Bigger than the Nobel" lamenting that Pope John Paul II would never receive a Nobel Peace Prize, even though Brooks quoted the Pope as saying, "the evil of our times consists in the first place in a kind of degradation, indeed in a pulverizaion, of the fundamental uniqueness in each person."

I am still going to keep my yellowing copy of the page out at the ready, in case anyone might like to see it.


Elwood H. Smith said...

Thank you, Chris for this lovely article about a lovely writer--and superb artist in her own right--writing about the lovely artist, William Steig.