Jack Davis, extraordinary artist, dies at 91

Jack Davis promotional art for Get Smart

Jack Davis promotional art for Get Smart

Jack Davis, a talented artist known for his work on Mad magazine and various commercial artwork, died Wednesday at the age of 91, the University of Georgia said in an announcement.

The university released the news because Davis, a Georgia native, often did caricatures of the school’s bulldog mascot.

Besides Mad, Davis frequently got work commercial art jobs promoting movies and television shows. Perhaps his most famous was the movie poster for 1963’s It’s a Mad, Mad, Mad, Mad World, with caricatures of Spencer Tracy and the film’s mammoth cast.  Davis then parodied his own work for the cover of It’s a World, World, World, World Mad, a paperback collection of Mad reprinted features.

With the popularity of spy shows in the 1960s, Davis did illustrations promoting The Man From U.N.C.L.E., Get Smart and I Spy. The artist also illustrated an U.N.C.L.E. lunchbox.

Davis also drew an intricate illustration promoting NBC’s 1965-66 television lineup. To appreciate it better, click on the image below.

Jack Davis' epic illustration promoting NBC's 1965-66 television lineup

Jack Davis’ epic illustration promoting NBC’s 1965-66 television lineup



1965: Mad’s Jack Davis depicts NBC’s lineup

Artist Jack Davis was one of William M. Gaines’s “gang of idiots” who was a major to Mad magazine. But he often did other art jobs as well.

One came in 1965, when David did a giant, “Where’s Waldo?” style drawing of the stars of NBC’s 1965-66 television lineup for TV Guide. There’s a TV spy connection to this, of course, because it includes Robert Culp and Bill Cosby of I Spy and Robert Vaughn and David McCallum of The Man From U.N.C.L.E.

Think you can spot them? Well, just CLICK RIGHT HERE.

UPDATE: Sorry about that, chief! We didn’t note that Don Adams as Maxwell Smart and Barbara Feldon as Agent 99 from Get Smart are in the Jack Davis drawing.