1. I like it, too.

    It makes sense to me.

    On one level, the famous text in the painting is accurate, for it refers to the painting, which is a painting of a pipe, not a pipe itself.

    But the text is accurate on yet another level, for the model itself is not a pipe itself, but a living human being, horribly transformed by means unknown. He is trapped into having the freakish outward appearance of a pipe, yet retains his human sentience. He now lives in a studio, and all he has to look forward to is to see how he has been immortalized in a portrait that he knows will someday be famous. However, in a cruel joke, the artist has chosen to strip him of his only remaining human features – his face, legs, and feet – in this portrait.

  2. I’m not sure why the artist has painted a Bent Billiard, while his model appears to be some type of Rhodesian. I think he’s going to be disappointed when he sees it.

  3. The “Ceci n’est pas une pipe” painting (also known as “The Treachery of Images,” according to Wikipedia) is a fairly well-known example of surrealism.

    And this cartoon takes that painting, and uses it for an example of absurdism.

  4. C W A A

    Anyone who has commissioned artists to do any work will laugh, as they understand that it is impossible to get them to produce to a brief.

  5. Pete, maybe the Rhodesian always wanted to be a Bent Billiard, and asked the artist to draw him that way.

  6. Is the smiling pipe character in the cartoon a known graphic design in its own right?

    Perhaps it’s just part of the cartoonists art style, but the pipe and the face look like something out of early last century’s advertising art.

  7. Good old “Raising Duncan”. That’s a bit more existential than usual for that strip.

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