Remembering Will Eisner

January 14, 2005

Cartoonist and long-time faculty member Will Eisner, who was best known for his superhero comic The Spirit and for coining the term “graphic novel” with his 1978 book A Contract with God, died on Monday, January 3, at the age of 87. Eisner served on the cartooning faculty at SVA from 1973 – 1992, bringing a wealth of experience and wisdom to the students who studied with him. MFA Illustration as Visual Essay Department Chair Marshall Arisman chaired the BFA Cartooning Department during Eisner’s tenure at the College and remembers working with the legendary cartoonist: “At the end of each year I would visit the senior portfolio classes and go through their portfolios with the instructor,” says Arisman. “Doing this with Will Eisner was particularly pleasurable and enlightening. Will’s genuine love of cartooning and the students was palpable. His comments were always encouraging and supportive. I feel it is an honor to have called him a friend.”

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