March 3, 2004 Cartoonist Nicole Hollander Will Speak at Library of Congress

Creator of the Comic Strip "Sylvia" Will Discuss Newest Book

Press Contact: Bibi Marti (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Martha Kennedy (202) 707-9115

Cartoonist Nicole Hollander will give a public talk titled, “Oh No, It’s Monday, and I’ve Run Out of Ideas: A Cartoonist’s Crisis,” at the Library of Congress on Monday, March 15, 2004, from 2 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. in the sixth floor Mumford Room, James Madison Building, 101 Independence Avenue S.E., Washington, D.C. This program, sponsored by the Library’s Prints and Photographs Division, is free and open to the public; no tickets are required. A book signing will follow the program.

In her talk, Hollander will show slides of her work, discuss her creative process and career, describe her typical day and comment on her newest book, “An ABC of Vice: An Insatiable Women’s Guide,” a collaboration with Regina Barrecca, noted author and Professor of English Literature at the University of Connecticut. Original drawings, given recently by Hollander to the Library of Congress, will be displayed at the event.

Hollander, well known as the creator of the comic strip “Sylvia,” is one of only a few women cartoonists whose syndicated work appears in comic pages across the United States. Among the more than 80 daily and weekly newspapers that publish Hollander’s cartoon strip are The Boston Globe, Chicago Tribune, The Detroit News, The Seattle Times, San Francisco Examiner and The Denver Post. Women’s News, an online publication, also features the strip.

Sylvia, the main character of Hollander’s strip, is a stay-at-home mother and advice columnist who finds herself humorously at odds with aspects of contemporary society. She converses with her friends, her cats, space aliens and her daughter and comments wryly on subjects that range from specific political issues to timeless themes in human relationships between the sexes and generations. With her trademark feather boa, open-heeled bedroom slippers, and cigarette, Sylvia made her initial appearance in Hollander’s first book of cartoons, “I’m in Training to Be Tall and Blonde,” published in 1979 by St. Martin’s Press.

The thoughts and imaginings of Hollander’s heroine shape and drive the comic, which has no action or story line. Hollander’s elegantly drawn comic often has a feminist tone. Recurring thematic inventions include “Woman Who Does Everything More Beautifully Than You,” the “Woman Who Worries About Everything,” the “Fashion Cop” and “Alien Lovers.”

Hollander has published more than 10 collections of “Sylvia” as well as illustrations in The New York Times Review of Books, The Washington Post Magazine and Chicago Magazine. She has also illustrated humorous books about cats and children’s books, and co-edited a historical survey of cartoons.

In addition to creating cartoons and writing, Hollander has recently taught courses on political humor and editorial illustration at DePaul University and Columbia College in Chicago. She serves on the advisory board of the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon, which is administered by the Library.

For more information about this program, contact Martha H. Kennedy at (202) 707-9115, or Cheryl McCullers at 707-1865, e-mail, or visit the Swann home page at


PR 04-043
ISSN 0731-3527