Whenever I do posts about notable people, I usually ignore the various name changes they may have gone through and stick with the moniker that was in place when they first achieved that notoriety. However, it might be a bit misleading in the case of alternative cartoonist Aline Kominsky-Crumb. She grew up Aline Goldsmith on Long Island, met some guy with the last name Kominsky and married him. The marriage didn't last very long, but she must have liked the new surname, as she hung on to it, and continued to hang onto it, albeit in hyphenated form, even after marrying a second time (more, a lot more, about that marriage in a bit.) Whatever she chose to call herself, she was attending the University of Arizona around 1970 or so when she met two cartoonists at a party. Now these weren't the kind of cartoonists that worked for Disney or Hanna-Barbera, nor the kind of cartoonists that drew for DC or Marvel, nor the kind of cartoonists who might have had a comic strip alongside Beetle Bailey and Mary Worth in a daily newspaper. No, Kim Deitch and Spain Rodriguez were underground cartoonists, and the best place to view their work was at some head shop in the bohemian section of town. Deitch and Rodriguez convinced aspiring artist Aline to move to a place that was rapidly becoming the bohemian capitol of America: San Francisco. Aline took their advice, and once settled in the City by the Bay, did what any self-respecting underground cartoonist does, she pushed the envelope:
Actually, she seems to have pushed more than the envelope.
Aline spent the next 50 years producing underground, soon-to-be called alternative, comics (or comix.) The following sampling may not be in chronological order, as I didn't really have the time to track down the dates for a lot of these, but it doesn't matter. Her drawing style, and her forthrightness, changed very little over the decades:
Now, about where that Crumb part of her name came from. If you know anything comix than you'll have figured out it has something to do with...
...this guy, Robert Crumb, sometimes known as R. Crumb, probably the most well-known underground artist to come out of the 1960s (trivia note: he lived for a while in my hometown of Cleveland where he worked for American Greetings.) Aline and Robert met at a party, fell in love, lived together for a few years before eventually marrying in 1978. This union was a bit hard for some of her female underground cartoonist colleagues to take (one of those cartoonists, Trina Robbins, called Alina a "camp follower".) So exactly what was the problem? Robert Crumb's view of male-female relations...
Ain't love grand?