The pup with the wry smile on the cover of Maira Kalman’s new book, Beloved Dog is her own Irish Wheaten, Pete. He’s just one of many canine characters who star in the renowned artist and author’s compendium of, and tribute to, the many dogs she has encountered over the years, both in life and in literature. “Dogs embody total innocence and truth. And they are just funny. And they make people happy just by existing,” said Maira, whose trademark wit and sensitivity radiate from every page of Beloved Dog.
A frequent contributor to The New Yorker, The New York Times and the writer and illustrator of over eighteen acclaimed children’s books, Maira’s warm and colourful paintings are clearly inspired by artists like Ludwig Bemelmans and Henri Matisse. And of course, an unabashed infatuation with four-legged friends. “If the natural desire for humans is to love and be loved, dogs allow for that connection in the most uncomplicated way,” she said. “And when you are in love, you are the best of yourself.”
Images courtesy of Maira Kalman / The Penguin Press
Beloved Dog is published by The Penguin Press
A heartfelt thank you to all the photographers, artists, illustrators, and writers who trusted us, dived in, and brought us delight, grace, excitement, courage, wilderness, and wonder over the last five years. Their work not only reflects the bonds we share with our animal companions, it also celebrates their spirit.
None of this would be possible without our four-legged counterparts who sprinkle magic dust time and time again, and our readers, who embraced this kooky idea, rallied around us, and made this world theirs too. With friends like these, who needs nine lives?
February 5, 2019