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Drew Friedman: Vermeer of the Borscht Belt

June 27 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

$7.00 – $15.00

Join us for an evening of art and film as we celebrate the work of Drew Friedman with a special screening of “Vermeer of the Borscht Belt”. Before the screening Drew will be joined in conversation by the film’s director Kevin Dougherty. Afterwards there will be a book signing of Schtick Figures: The Cool, The Comical, The Crazy. The book will be available for purchase in the SI Museum shop ($29.99). Pre-inscribed posters will also be available for purchase ($15 cash only). 


The Cool, The Comical, The Crazy: Schtick Figures

Step into the world of Drew Friedman’s iconic portraits with Schtick Figures, a captivating collection showcasing a wide range of famous and forgotten personalities. From comedians like Buster Keaton and Groucho Marx to musicians like B.B. King and Bob Dylan, each portrait is a testament to Friedman’s unparalleled talent and keen eye for detail. 

Vermeer of the Borscht Belt 

Delve into the fascinating world of Drew Friedman’s artistic evolution with “Vermeer of the Borscht Belt,” a captivating documentary tracing Friedman’s journey from alternative comics to SPY magazine and beyond. Directed by Kevin Dougherty, the film features interviews with R. Crumb, Gilbert Gottfried, Marc Maron, Patton Oswalt, and more, offering a unique glimpse into Friedman’s creative process and the cultural influences that shaped his work.

Drew Friedman’s artwork has appeared in RAW, Weirdo, Heavy Metal, National Lampoon, SPY, MAD, The New Yorker, The New York Times, The New York Observer, etc. In his NYT review of Old Jewish Comedians, Steven Heller wrote: “A festival of drawing virtuosity and fabulous craggy faces. Drew Friedman might very well be the Vermeer of the Borscht Belt.” The Society of Illustrators hosted a main gallery showing of Friedman’s Old Jewish Comedians illustrations in 2014. The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum held an exhibition of the artwork created for his book All The Presidents in 2019. 

Kevin Dougherty began his film career as a production assistant. During the making of “Bonfire of the Vanities” he incurred the wrath of director Brian DePalma after refusing to let him on set without proper identification. He spent the rest of the shoot guarding an empty parking space in an underground garage. He wrote and directed “Fuzzball” for Nickelodeon’s animated series “Ka-Blam!”, and he created “Juanita & the List,” an early web cartoon that racked up more than a million views. Dougherty has directed music videos and for more than a decade managed the Cafe Metropolis, an independent music venue in Wilkes-Barre, Pennsylvania.

This event will take place in the Main Gallery. Bathrooms are only accessible via stairs.


Tickets are non-refundable. Tickets may not be exchanged for another event. If you are unable to use your ticket, tickets may be converted to a donation by emailing


June 27
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
$7.00 – $15.00
Event Category:


At the Society
128 East 63rd Street
New York, NY 10065 United States
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Drew Friedman General Admission
$ 15.00
9 available
Drew Friedman Member Admission
$ 10.00
9 available
Drew Friedman Student Admission
$ 7.00
9 available
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