I will discuss the news after the cut
This year has no Lynn Johnston. She was on the list for last year (see the link) where she and Deborah Peyton were supposed to talk about their fabric design. If you check out the link, Deborah is caricatured for the cover and featured right beside the caricature for Lynn, so it is astonishing she was not there.
Somehow that ended up being a solo presentation by Lynn and we have never heard the story about what happened to Deborah Peyton who showed up in none of Tom Heintjes' Reuben Award pictures. In the picture of Lynn doing her fabric presentation, there is noticeably no Deborah but a microphone where Deborah should be.
My speculation is that back in May, 2016 when Lynn and Deborah Peyton went to attend the surface design show called “SURTEX“ in New York, Lynn got upset when she was not given enough attention. She hinted at this briefly with this comment:
New artists, like Deborah and I, were given badges which said “non buyer”—which made us invisible, and sometimes dismissed. We wished we’d been given a different moniker.
You don't mess with Lynn and her desire for attention, so I would not be surprised if this slight led to a parting of the ways between Johnston and Peyton and the Reuben Award pitch suddenly turned into a solo pitch. Certainly in Lynn's recent interviews where she talks about her fabric career, Deborah's name never comes up.
The Reuben Award Nominees: Good News For Women
The Reuben Award nominees were announced and 3 of the 5 nominees are women. The Reuben Award women winners were Lynn in 1985, Cathy Guisewite in 1992, and Roz Chast in 2014. Yes, that was a 22-year gap between Cathy and Roz. My guess is that they are headed for another "vote for a woman to show we aren't sexist" year. That bodes well for the women, but not so well for Stephan Pastis (Pearls Before Swine) who has been nominated for this award 9 times without a win.
Charity Art Auction.
Lynn does have some art in this list, so good for her. This is the piece she did for a calendar and you can tell from the subject matter, it was probably done in the 1990s, when Michael was learning to drive.