Next month at San Diego Comic-Con, IDW will honor both the breadth of Jack Kirby's imagination, and his unrivaled artistic skill, in a special 100th birthday celebration panel and art show, featuring an incredible 1,300 images of original Kirby art.
Kirby, the visionary artist and creator or co-creator of such characters as the X-Men, Captain America, Silver Surfer, The New Gods, The Avengers, Kamandi, and hundreds more, remains one of the most influential comic artists of all time. Not only do his wildly imagined creations continue to inspire new media properties across the world, but his incredibly drawn pages still stand as a pinnacle of sequential art.
This birthday tribute, hosted by IDW President Greg Goldstein, will feature a multi-media display of more than 1,300 pages of Kirby's original artwork—the largest showing ever—selected from the eight Jack Kirby Artist's Edition books IDW has published, as well as additional not-yet-published pages that will be new to fans of the books. "There's never been a larger or more impressive collection of Kirby visuals in public," said Goldstein.
Comic legends Walter Simonson (Thor, Alien, Ragnarok) and Kevin Eastman (co-creator of the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles) will be on hand to discuss Kirby's continued influence. Also present will be IDW PDX Creative Director Dirk Wood and IDW Director of Special Projects Scott Dunbier, the editor of IDW's award-winning Artist's Editions series.
"Jack Kirby was the most important comic artist of all time, and we could not be more pleased to help celebrate his enduring legacy," said Dunbier.
In addition to his importance, Kirby was also incredibly prolific, penciling 15 pages or more each week during marathon days at his drawing board, lasting upward of 12 hours. Yet, despite the breathtaking rate at which he worked, nearly all the pages he left behind are a master class in design, layout, and imagination, made even more impressive by the fact that Kirby was almost completely self-taught.
Panel attendees will see hundreds of eye-catching pieces from Kirby's tenure at both DC and Marvel, including selections from Fantastic Four, Mister Miracle, Thor, The Forever People, and more, printed so clearly that the whiteout, eraser marks, and blue-line notes are all visible, giving a behind-the-scenes look at some of Kirby's biggest hits.
"One of the things that IDW is most committed to as a company is the preservation and proper display of classic comics, and we could not be more excited and proud to show off these original pages in celebration of all that Kirby accomplished," Goldstein said. "We're grateful to our partners at Marvel and DC, and of course to the Kirby family, for the opportunity to publish these beautiful and important books."
The panel will on Saturday, July 22nd, from 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM in Room 25ABC. Seating is limited, and in addition to a special gift for everyone who attends, two lucky fans will be leaving with their own Kirby Artist's Edition.