Columbia University

Comics New York Trilogy Will Eisner (1985)
inventor of the graphic novel concept, master of the American comic strip with an undeniable influence, Will Eisner has, with New York: The Big City, paid a vibrant tribute to his native city and its inhabitants. A major work, articulated around the meanderings of a city that looks like a gigantic stage where Columbia University is represented...
Columbia University
Columbia University - Crédit photo : Fantrippers

Seen from a distance, most large cities are just an accumulation of buildings, large populations and vast areas. To me, this does not represent “reality”. The big city as seen by its own inhabitants is the true reflection of this reality.

Will Eisner

A pillar of American comics, which he largely contributed to legitimizing, Will Eisner began drawing at a very early age and published his first drawing at sixteen in his college newspaper. At the origin of the Eisner & Iger studio, founded with Jerry Iger, the artist became editor for Bob Kane, the co-creator of Batman, and Jack Kirby. Designer of the Spirit, a major figure of comic books, draftsman for the army, Will Eisner is also at the origin of the graphic novel. A concept developed with A contract with God opening up multiple perspectives for his contemporaries who wish to evolve outside the pre-established “boxes”. Made up of drawings from his visits to New York with students from the School of Visual Arts, the New York: The Big City, in which Columbia University appears, takes the form of a kind of theatrical representation of the city. With a powerful dramaturgy, the book tells the story of New York City, focusing on details that sometimes escape the attention of the general public. A series of brilliant snapshots for their relevance and their ability to capture the essence of the Big Apple.

The monuments and other essential buildings are of course part of the picture, but here, it is rather the streets and their inhabitants that Eisner has focused on. A way for this Brooklyn native to tell the story of New York as he has always seen and lived it, capturing slices of life, while all around, time is doing its work on people and buildings. It is also a way, as he himself said, of drawing a universal portrait of the city and thus linking New York to all the other great metropolises. It’s also a good way to put the human element back into the equation, with all the fascinating and tragicomic vignettes that this implies.


Will Eisner is a three-time winner of the Eisner Award, for which he is named.

Columbia University

Counting among its prestigious students Barack Obama, Jack Kerouac and Laurie Anderson, Columbia University is one of the most prestigious universities in the world.

More than 100 Nobel Prize winners, 34 heads of state and nearly 30 Oscar winners are affiliated with the institution founded in 1754, either as alumni or staff members.

Its best-known building, the Low Library, was built in 1895 and today houses the administrative center of the university.

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The Fantrippers Buying Board

New York: The Big City by Will Eisner

New York: The Big City by Will Eisner

A little over 100 years ago, Will Eisner, one of the masters of the 9th art, was born. Publishers offer a complete version of New York: The Big City, a comic book gem.


Will Eisner is one of the major authors of the comic book world. Born in 1917 (and died in 2005), he built a sumptuous work graphically and narratively. He is especially the father of the graphic novel (A Contract with God and Other Tenement Stories in 1978). Before that, he created The Spirit in 1940, the masked vigilante, a huge American series.

After Luca in 1974, the following year he was awarded the Grand Prix of the city of Angoulême by his peers, the first American author and successor to André Franquin.

In addition to New York: The Big City, Delcourt Editions will publish other collections of the master: the trilogy of Contract with God, Life, in pictures & the trilogy Les clés de la bande dessinée, an excellent way for his fans to find a large part of his work and for neophytes to discover it. After Osamu Tezuka(Ayako, Adorufu ni Tsugu), again, a rich idea.

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By Gilles Rolland

Wednesday, December 8, 2021

Passionné de cinéma, de rock and roll, de séries TV et de littérature. Rédacteur de presse et auteur des livres Le Heavy Metal au cinéma, Paroles de fans Guns N' Roses, Paroles de fans Rammstein et Welcome to my Jungle : 100 albums rock et autres anecdotes dépareillées. Adore également voyager à la recherche des lieux les plus emblématiques de la pop culture.

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