Way to Go
Tami Oliphant is a Ph.D. candidate in Library and Information Studies at the University of Western Ontario.
This entertaining collection of drawings by Harry Mayerovitch, a
Renaissance man who has worked as an architect, teacher, graphic
designer, town planner, cartoonist, and painter for the last seven
decades, is divided into three sections. The first section, “The Other
One,” explores the intriguing subject of shadows. They can’t exist
without us; they confirm our physical existence; they can appear
menacing at times by being larger than the person they are attached to;
and they can startle their owner when they appear unexpectedly.
Mayerovitch playfully draws on these contradictions by sketching shadows
that are defiant or contradictory. For example, one man’s shadow is
actually a woman, another is a judge condemning the defendant, and
another is an appalled shadow of a proudly naked man. These drawings are
delightful; they show how all human beings are multiples and how one
never knows what lurks in the shadows of their own psyche.
Section 2, “Pot Pour Rire,” is a set of random drawings. Many of
them are surreal and feature two-headed men and removed body parts.
Others include a perfectly contented polygamist hugging his four wives
while their facial expressions reflect their placement in line, and an
angry bull looking at Picasso’s painting of it.
The final section, “Way to Go,” encourages the reader to exit this
mortal coil in style. These drawings show caskets that reflect the
occupiers’ personality, such as a cat with eight coffins in front of
him, a beauty queen with a huge sash jauntily hanging around her
curvaceous casket, a coffin as a bar, and a magician sawing his coffin
Mayerovitch’s drawings are simple, witty, and effective. This
collection reveals an artist who is not afraid to explore all aspects of