Abner Dean (1910 – 1982), born Abner Epstein, was an American cartoonist. In allegorical or surrealist situations, Dean often depicted extremes of human behavior amid grim, decaying urban settings or barren landscapes. His artwork prompted Clifton Fadiman to comment, “His pictures are trick mirrors in which we catch sight of those absurd fragments of ourselves that we never see in the smooth glass of habit.”
Graduating from Dartmouth in 1931, Dean studied at the National Academy of Design. He worked as a commercial illustrator, contributing to The New Yorker, Esquire (magazine) and other publications. His work for Life included illustrations of George Orwell’s 1984 for a Life article on Orwell.
As a Dartmouth grad, Dean did some Dartmouth cover illustrations such as this 1929 program vs. Cornell.