Jerry Robbinson, the comic book illustrator credited for creating Batman’s ultimate archvillain, The Joker, died Wednesday in his sleep in New York City. He was 89.
“Jerry Robinson illustrated some of the defining images of pop culture’s greatest icons. As an artist myself, it’s impossible not to feel humbled by his body of work. Everyone who loves comics owes Jerry a debt of gratitude for the rich legacy that he leaves behind,” Jim Lee, DC Entertainment co-publisher and fellow Batman artist, said in a statement.
Robinson was known not only for his work on the Batman comics, but also for being an advocate for the rights of artists. Most notably, Robinson led the charge in Jerry Siegel and Joe Shuster’s battle to seek compensation for the creation of DC Comics’ Superman character, as well as campaigning for imprisoned political cartoonists overseas.
Stan Lee, legendary Marvel comic book creator and former president of the publication, also offered some kind words to the late Jerry Robinson in a statement to The Washington Post’s Comic Riffs. He said:
“Jerry Robinson was not only one of the finest artists ever to illustrate comic books, but he was also the head of an editorial syndicate which made cartoons available worldwide, as well as being an inspiration to young artists whom he always found time to help and advise.
“A genuine talent and a genuine gentleman, he was truly a credit to the arts.”
[Image credit: ComicConnect.com]