05 December 2008

The Best and Wurst of Wallace Tripp

Yesterday I wrote about my childhood love of Richard Scarry and my current-day admiration for Brian Lies. In between in the illustrious tradition of illustrating animals is Wallace Tripp.

I must have seen Tripp's illustrations first in some of Peggy Parish’s Amelia Bedelia stories. But his first book that really grabbed me Headlines, written by Malcolm Hall. It connected because of the wordplay and the peek at old-fashioned typography, but it stuck with me because of Tripp's personality-filled anthropomorphic animals.

Then I found that Tripp was putting out collections of nonsense verse and simple nonsense to showcase his art: A Great Big Ugly Man Came Up and Tied His Horse to Me (1973), Granfa’ Grig Had a Pig (1976), Marguerite, Go Wash Your Feet (1985), and Wallace Tripp’s Wurst Seller (1981).

The last struck me at the time because I couldn't fit it into any category: it wasn't a traditional picture book, yet it didn't seem to be a collection of magazine cartoons, either. It was just a miscellany of wonderful, quirky, funny Wallace Tripp art. Which meant--I reasoned out--that there must be some other people out there who liked Tripp's work as much as I did.

Of course, there was no internet then, so I had no way to find those people. Now I can Google, and discover that Big Time Attic has featured some of the artwork from Wallace Tripp’s Wurst Seller. And that book dealer Stuart Ng's asking price for a signed hardcover is only $125.

1 comment:

Marcy Tripp painter said...

Wallace Tripp sketches and original art from published books for sale at trippgallery.com

A family website that welcomes you.