Jim Flora: artist, illustrator, lover of boats
February 15, 2007 5:07 AM   Subscribe

Jim Flora is best-known for his wild jazz and classical album covers of the 1940's and 1950's. He authored and illustrated children's books and flourished for decades as a magazine illustrator. Flora was also a prolific fine artist with a devilish sense of humor and a flair for juxtaposing playfulness, absurdity and violence. And it's not widely known, but he also liked painting ships.
posted by flapjax at midnite (15 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
By the way, Flora's brief autobiographical summary of his life and artistic career that appears in the last "ships" link is worth the time to read: he seems to have been every bit as affable as his art.
posted by flapjax at midnite at 5:10 AM on February 15, 2007

This looks great, especially the "album covers" link. Arrgghh, new guy in office, must act like I'm working....

Thanks for posting this.
posted by marxchivist at 5:48 AM on February 15, 2007

posted by Anything at 5:49 AM on February 15, 2007

Fantastic post, thanks! That Ward-o-matic link is especially great.
posted by mediareport at 6:01 AM on February 15, 2007

Mr. Ward-o-matic also started the fun flickr pool Retro Kid for illustrations of the Flora era.
posted by bendybendy at 6:18 AM on February 15, 2007

Love his color choices, love this link. Thanks!
posted by Dizzy at 6:20 AM on February 15, 2007

Yes, yes, Jim Flora. What a wonderful post.
posted by soundofsuburbia at 7:01 AM on February 15, 2007

Great post.
posted by the cuban at 7:32 AM on February 15, 2007

I was unaware of his ship paintings, they're delightful. I must have one.
Thanks, flappy!
posted by Floydd at 7:38 AM on February 15, 2007

I've got one from the Flora Gallery and one from the Not! Flora Gallery.
posted by sourwookie at 7:48 AM on February 15, 2007

Serious thanks. I have always loved his stuff. I have a few 78 covers of his in my office.
posted by miss lynnster at 8:59 AM on February 15, 2007

These are great. As a kid I loved Leopold the Seethrough Crumbpicker and I read it to my kids now, but I never knew who Flora was. Clicking the first link I recognized his style immediately.
posted by serazin at 10:30 AM on February 15, 2007

It’s so nice to see these posts about Jim Flora. For over a year I’ve been working with the Flora family, along with Irwin Chusid, to preserve and honor the work of this fascinating man and unique artist. After Flora died in 1998 the family tucked away their dad’s collected works, including sketchbooks, letters, commercial projects, unpublished (and WILD) children’s books & hundreds of amazing paintings that date from the late 1930s-on, all of it magical. The family has been especially generous to allow us access and time to document and photograph this body of work. And I know they’ve been thrilled – even surprised - by the recent attention their father’s work has gathered. I'm sure Flora would be thrilled and a bit surprised himself. Thanks for all the kind posts.
posted by Barbe at 2:06 PM on February 16, 2007 [2 favorites]

Wow. Thanks, Barbe.
posted by cortex at 4:40 PM on February 16, 2007

Yeah, it's great to have you here, Barbe. Thanks for the work preserving Flora's art!
posted by mediareport at 11:09 PM on February 16, 2007

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