Q&A with Mort Künstler, Cove Neck historical artist
What have you been up to?
Two weeks ago I spoke at the National Archives in Washington for the first time in a program about my life and career, starting with drawings from my childhood through men's adventure magazines I illustrated, the movie posters I painted like "The Poseidon Adventure," and my advertising art, and then the Civil War and other historical scenes. The setting was a big deal. The appearance was initiated by Rep. Steve Israel, who is the chairman of the Battlefield Preservation Caucus in Congress, and it was jointly sponsored by the caucus and the archives. After dinner, he asked, 'How would you like to take a tour of the Capitol right now?' So I ended up getting a midnight tour.
You've said a painting you did last year, "Washington's Crossing at McKonkey's Ferry," which accurately depicts George Washington crossing the Delaware River, would be your most famous. Is it working out that way?
I think without any question. There have been news stories about it around the world. I'm still getting emails about it. I never had anything like it happen before.
What are you working on now?
A coffee-table book on the founding of the nation, starting with the colony at Jamestown and going through every event through the War of 1812. I'll fill in with new art of things I haven't painted before.