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Jack Kirby Museum’s ‘Prototype: Alpha’ opens in New York City

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We’ve written about the Jack Kirby Museum and Research Center project a few times before, most recently a week ago when we mentioned it was finally opening a physical presence, in the form of a pop-up in the artist’s native Lower East Side Manhattan called “Prototype: Alpha.” That name strikes me in itself as being a particularly Kirby-esque flourish.

The location opened Monday, and the last few days we finally saw tantalizing glimpses of what to expect on the museum’s walls leaking out via social media (via the museum’s Facebook page and the What if Kirby Twitter account). Here are three behind-the-scenes shots of work being installed into the Delancey Street space:

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Some nice stuff, showing Kirby’s work off almost in a Pop Art context. When the space opened, it didn’t take long to fill up.

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Tonight, designer Arlen Schumer will give a visual lecture on Kirby called “Ya’akov Kurtzberg: King of Comics.” It’s described as

“…the story of a first-generation American son of European immigrants who grows up on New York City’s Lower East Side and goes on to co-create Captain America and practically the entire Marvel Comics universe — oh, you might know him better, like many American Jews of his generation, by the name change he chose: Jack Kirby. What Elvis was to rock & roll—what Babe Ruth was to baseball—what Picasso was to Modern Art—Kirby was to comic book art. He created a nearly-endless stream of characters and concepts that now form the foundations of American entertainment empires; developed entire comic book genres, like romance comics; and defined his own graphic vocabulary, much like D.W.Griffith did for film, that has influenced generations of artists, writers and storytellers. But as great as Kirby’s successes were, he himself is also one of the greatest victims of the corporate system that denied a creator ownership of his creations. And therein lies the heart of the Kirby story: his comics, his creations, his credit.”

Being Schumer, there’s a great-looking poster for the event.

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This review of a previous lecture by Schumer, on the subject of Joe Kubert, gives attendees a hint at what they may well expect to see and hear tonight. I wish there weren’t an ocean between me and New York right now: I’d love to be there.

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Comments

2 Comments

the hudson is the only thing between me and there, but i still won’t be able to go.

The Schumer poster is weak as his his work.

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