The Future According to Robert Crumb

The future according to Robert Crumb

In 1988, after the popular, but depressing 12-panel “A Short History of America” series went out of print, Robert Crumb added three panels to answer the “What next?” question posed in his original final 12th panel.  Although intended as an extension of the original series, this epilogue stands on its own.

The Future According to Robert Crumb

In these 3 panels, Crumb depicts three possible futures:

  1. “Worst Case Scenario: Ecological Disaster” an ecological wasteland;
  2. “The FUN Future: Techno fix on the march!” ‘Jetson’s’ like high-tech cities; and,
  3. “The Ecotopian Solution.” Hippie inspired rural communities.

Third in a three part series (Parts 1 and 2)

Robert Crumb—A Short History of America

Robert Crumb is an artist and illustrator recognized for the distinctive style of his drawings and his critical, satirical, subversive view of the American mainstream.  While he is perhaps best known for his ‘Keep on Truckin’” and Fritz the Cats’ cartoons, his ‘Short History of America’ series is an urbanist classic.

Arguably his most timeless image, this series shows the gradual metamorphosis of a single plot of land from virgin wilderness to urban decay in 12 panels. It first appeared in black & white in 1979 in the ecological magazine Co-Evolutionary Quarterly and in Snoid Comics. It was rearranged and colored by Peter Poplaski in 1981 and quickly became Kitchen Sink Press’ best-selling poster.

Panels 1-6 of “A Short History of America,” by Robert Crumb

Panels 7-12 of “A Short History of America,” by Robert Crumb

A poster version of the series can be purchased here.

First in a three post series,(Parts 2 and 3)

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