Book of New Yorker's Westport scenes benefits historical society
Updated 11:06 pm, Monday, May 25, 2015
A book showcasing illustrated Westport scenes featured on the cover of The New Yorker magazine over the years is now in the works.
Inspired by an exhibition called "Cover Story" at the Westport Historical Society last year, "The New Yorker in Westport" book will have 50 full-size New Yorker covers of local scenes.
The idea for the new book began when Westporter Eve Potts was thumbing through her copy of "The Complete Book of New Yorker Covers" and she recognized the Compo Beach pavilion on a cover by Westport artist Albert Hubbell, according to publicity for the book.
Potts wondered how many New Yorker covers were produced by local artists and she found there were 767.
That discovery led to the historical society's "Cover Story" exhibit, which prompted Andrew Bentley to approach the organization about producing a book on the local covers.
"It took several months to get copyright approval from CondÃ© Nast during which time Eve and Andrew selected 50 covers and reached out to many Westporters -- artists, historians, old-timers, business people, writers and anyone who would listen -- and put together stories about our town," a news release states.
The book starts with an Art Deco-style cover by James Daugherty from the first year of the New Yorker's publication, and continues through familiar scenes from around Westport that document the transition of Westport from a rural community to a commuter suburb of New York.
All of the artists are local and a few were even among the most prolific artists whose work was showcased on the covers of the New Yorker, the release said.
Some, like Charles Addams, are world famous while a few had only one or two covers to their names over their careers.
The covers are arranged in chronological order in the book, reflecting the changing style -- and price -- of The New Yorker over the years.
"Accompanying each cover is pithy commentary that mixes history with legend and little-known facts about the remarkable town of Westport," the release said.
Cost of the book is $40 and proceeds benefit the Westport Historical Society.
To be among the first to receive one of 1,000 inscribed copies of this book, written and designed by Eve Potts and Andrew Bentley, order online at www.westporthistory.org or call 203-222-1424 to reserve a copy that can be picked up after Aug. 1 at the historical society headquarters, 25 Avery Place.