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Jack Kirby (American, 1917-1994)
Also known as: Jacob Kurtzberg; Kurtzberg, JacobBirth Place: New York, NY
Jack Kirby has received world-wide recognition for his long comic book career and accomplishments. He is regarded by historians and fans as one of the major innovators and most influential creators in the comic-book medium, thus earning the nick-name "King." Among Kirby's many co-creations are Captain America, the Newsboy Legion, the Challengers of the Unknown, the Fantastic Four, the Hulk, Thor, the Avengers, the X-Men, Silver Surfer, the New Gods, and countless other memorable heroes and villains.
Jack Kirby was never one to do things in expected ways. As an artist, Kirby had no formal training and instead learned his trade through practice, determination and on-the-job training. Having been rejected by various art schools and leaving Pratt Institute after only a week, Kirby found his own success and became one of the most recognized comic book artists of his time.
Born in 1917 in New York City, Kirby's birth name was Jacob Kurtzberg. His first break as an artist was in 1936, when he joined the Lincoln Newspaper Syndicate. After working on cartoons there for several years, Kirby continued to offer his skills elsewhere until he got a respectable position at Fox Feature Syndicate. It was here that Kirby began his partnership with Joe Simon, which proved to be very fruitful.
From here, Kirby took a job with Marvel, where he and Simon created the iconic Captain America. Though he found other projects at Marvel and DC, his next biggest success was Young Romance. He eventually ended his partnership with Simon and worked solo at both major comic outlets, again returning to superheroes with the Fantastic Four. Kirby continued to innovate until his death in 1994.
Kirby is remembered for the way he crafted a story with his art, creating characters that still resonate with readers today.
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