An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek

An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek
"The largest of the Rocs picks her up by the skirt."

The comic strip The Upside-Downs of Little Lady Lovekins and Old Man Muffaroo was created by Gustave Verbeek and published in The New York Herald in 1904. Mr. Verbeek created 64 of these strips.

An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek

First you’d read the comic right side up, and then, to continue the story, you’d flip over the page and read it upside down.

And now, A Fish Story:

An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek
Right side up
(Click to greatly enlarge)

An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek
Upside down
(Click to greatly enlarge)

– Oulipo Week! Found in the Collection: The Upside-Downs of Little Lady Lovekins and Old Man Muffaroo, The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum Blog, The Ohio State University Library>>
– The Upside Down World of Gustave Verbeek: Complete Sunday Comics 1903-05 [Hardcover], Amazon>>

Tagged : / /

2 thoughts on “An upside down comic strip by Gustave Verbeek

  1. Nice to see more articles about upside-down art. Ever ask "who invented Upside-Down Art?" L. R. Emerson II.

    Today we are finding artists everywhere mimicking the topsy-turvy style of American Artist L. R. Emerson II who started an international movement involving upside-down, multi-directional art. Emerson is credited with inventing Upside-Down Art.

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art, NYC describes an ancient form of composition known as Dualism, dating from the Preceramic period (3000-1800 B.C.). Artifacts from this period include early woven textiles decorated with zoomorphic creatures paired in inverted symmetries. In dualism, subtly or clearly expressed in art, opposite doubles and mirror images reflect the ancient heritage of symbolic dualism in the ideologies, world visions, and social structures of Andean people.

    Please visit to see the world’s most unusual art, from internationally known American artist L. R. Emerson II.
    Emerson is the leading artist of the Upside-Down Artist movement having produced thirty years of artmaking success and documented invention regarding multi-directional design and compositional arrangement.
    In a recent interview Emerson responded to questions about process versus product saying:
    "Thirty years of working as an upside-down artist, arranging subjects every which way has embedded a formula for composition firmly into my internal, visual psyche. I’m frankly unable to work in a traditional right-side up manner. Stored in my mind thousands, memory holds thousands of my works, – artworks comprised with every unconventional combination of compositional structure yet I believe I still have not even scratched the surface. Whereas there’s a genital form of flattery in the fact of other artists copying my style, at the same interval I keep moving forward, seldom showing my latest discovery."
    Emerson 2013
    Due to Emerson’s published research and exploration Art Education texts are having to be re-written to include Emerson’s compositional variant; upside-down, multi-directional composition has been validated and stands alone as a worthy from of composing subjects.
    Emerson’s work has been presented to more than 500 galleries in the U.S.A. and to over 50 major museums across the planet.
    His pioneering effort, enduring over three decades to break the glass ceiling of conventional composition sets L. R. Emerson II apart from followers of the Upside-Down movement.
    L. R. Emerson II may very well be the Thomas Edison of artmaking. More information documenting Emerson’s thirty-five unique methods for creating upside down art can be found in the book The Purple Tree; Art in a Boundless Age, 2009. Included in the text are examples of upside-down painting, upside-down drawing methods and more dating back to 1983.
    Mary Arkin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *