Longtime New Yorker cartoonist Charles Barsotti, famed for his dog cartoons, passed away late Monday at his home in Kansas City, Missouri. He was 80 years old.
According to the Kansas City Star, he had undergone undergone surgery, chemotherapy and radiation following a March 2013 brain cancer diagnosis, and spent several weeks in hospice care.
A Texas native, Barsotti moved to Kansas City in 1964 for a job at Hallmark, where he remained until he was hired in 1968 as cartoon editor of The Saturday Evening Post, which closed the following year. In 1970, he came staff cartoonist of The New Yorker, which published 1,300 of his gags over the next four decades. His work also appeared in such publications as The New York Times, The Atlantic, USA Today and Playboy.
Barsotti, who in 1988 won a National Cartoonists Society award, released several collections of his work, including They Moved My Bowl: Dog Cartoons by New Yorker Cartoonist Charles Barsotti and The Essential Charles Barsotti.
Asked last year by The Comics Journal whether the single-panel cartoon had run its course, Barsotti replied, “It was a nice run, wasn’t it? I was thinking about that the other day. it’s like we’re the last wheel in town, which can sometimes be just frustrating as hell when they don’t share my enthusiasm for a drawing. What do I do with it then? Sometimes, if it’s really timely, I can change a caption or something. But I love the single-panel cartoon! I felt strongly about it at the Post. I hated to see the general-interest magazines go; all the cartoons they served. The New Yorker has a different audience. It allows you all kinds of references. And I would rather go out in a blaze of glory, speaking for The New Yorker. In a blaze of good cartoons.”
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