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About the Author
B. “HAP” KLIBAN (American, 1935–1990) belongs to the glorious tradition of cartoonists moved to take up their pens by the sloth, grace, and cunning of cats—or, as he was wont to spell it, qats. After art school, Kliban haunted Europe’s great museums, where he honed his talent for figure drawing. He made his way to San Francisco and took a series of jobs that included sketching the showgirls at the Mr. Wonderful Club. Between portraits of exotic dancers, Kliban did cartoons on cocktail napkins.
In 1962 Kliban responded to an ad seeking cartoon contributions for Playboy; he worked for the magazine until the end of his life. During the 1970s, Kliban—a cat lover who insisted he was not “gaga” about the animals—would idly draw his four resident felines as he awaited inspiration for his cartoons. Those drawings found their way to a literary agent, and in 1975 his first collection, Cat, stalked onto the scene. The book was an instant sensation.