R. Crumb

One of the pioneers of the underground comics scene, famous for his characters Fritz the Cat, Mr. Natural, and Angelfood McSpade, Robert Crumb remains a legendary writer, illustrator, and cultural icon. After his first foray into the transformative powers of hallucinogens in 1966, Crumb escaped the banality of his job at American Greetings in Cleveland, Ohio and bolted for the hippie haven of the Bay Area. There he founded the comic book Zap Comics, one of the only underground comic series to enjoy financial success, and occasionally designed album covers for musicians such Big Brother and the Holding Company. In addition to his distinctive illustration style, Crumb’s public notoriety was fueled by his lewd depictions of highly sexualized women and a host of conniving male protagonists. Since his counterculture heyday, he continues to produce comics, including the 2009 New York Times bestseller Book of Genesis, a textually faithful illustration of one of the Bible’s most intriguing collection stories, which is featured in the 2013 Venice Biennale exhibition "The Encyclopedic Palace."

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