Today I received news that David Levine, the brilliant caricaturist and illustrator, died this morning in Manhattan from prostate cancer and a subsequent combination of illnesses. He was 83.
I don’t think I can say it any better than the New York Times, so I won’t even try:
Mr. Levine’s drawings never seemed whimsical, like those of Al Hirschfeld. They didn’t celebrate neurotic self-consciousness, like Jules Feiffer’s. He wasn’t attracted to the macabre, the way Edward Gorey was. His work didn’t possess the arch social consciousness of Edward Sorel’s. Nor was he interested, as Roz Chast is, in the humorous absurdity of quotidian modern life. But in both style and mood, Mr. Levine was as distinct an artist and commentator as any of his well-known contemporaries. His work was not only witty but serious, not only biting but deeply informed, and artful in a painterly sense as well as a literate one.
Here is a video from 2008 of David Levine talking about what inspired his illustrations. It was part of a exhibition of several of his political caricatures, including illustrations of Barack Obama and Ronald Reagan, at the Forum Gallery in New York:
Links to stories about David Levine:
David Levine, Astringent Illustrator, Dies at 83, New York Times