Animals and Objects in and Out of Water: Posters, 2006-2008

By Jay Ryan, Joe Meno

26 ratings - 4.73* vote

"[Animals and Objects In and Out of Water] provides a constant stream of visually appealing eye candy and subtly complex visual spectacle."—The Onion AV ClubThe second book from the iconic Chicago underground poster artist.Jay Ryan has been busy since the 2005 release of his book 100 Posters, 134 Squirrels (Akashic/Punk Planet Books), a collection of his favorite prints fr "[Animals and Objects In and Out of Water] provides a constant stream of visually appealing eye candy and

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Book details

Paperback, 150 pages
December 1st 2009 by Akashic Books

(first published 2009)

1933354925 (ISBN13: 9781933354927)
Edition Language

Community Reviews

Jason Pettus

(Reprinted from the Chicago Center for Literature and Photography []. I am the original author of this essay, as well as the owner of CCLaP; it is not being reprinted here illegally.)

So when do you know that you've really made it as a book critic? Why, when you start receiving free review copies of lush art books, that's when, chump! I just recently received my first, in fact, Akashic's Animals and Objects In and Out of Water, a late-'00s overview of Chicago-based graphic designer and indie-rock stalwart Jay Ryan; and I was already a big fan of Ryan's work (it's hard to live in Chicago and not be, frankly -- his work is everywhere), so this book turned out to be an extra-big pleasure in my case. Featuring beautiful reprints of over 120 of his best designs, all of them from 2005 to '08, and a series of essays from artists he's done work for (including our old pal Joe Meno), this is a perfect gift for any creative hipster in your life; and with it coming out as an oversized paperback, it's one that everyone can afford too.

Out of 10: 9.0

(IMPORTANT UPDATE AND DISCLOSURE: Since writing this review, I've learned that my cousin Nathan Keay was part of the production team for this book. Rest assured that this didn't influence my opinion, in that I wrote my review before finding this out.)

Kitty Honeycutt

Book Title: "Animals and Objects In and Out of Water”
Author: Jay Ryan, Joe Meno, Andrew Bird
Published By: Akashic Books
Age Recommended: 15+
Reviewed By: Kitty Bullard
Raven Rating: 5

Review: Art has always been fascinating no matter what kind it is. If it’s cartoonish, a coveted oil painting, abstract, or anything at all. I have learned from being a mom that even extremely abstract crayon art from a five year old is still, art and just as interesting as something hung in a museum or art studio.

Jay Ryan’s art could be described as a lot of things. It is abstract, strange, creative, sometimes completely mental, and hard to understand. In this book however, much of this art by Jay Ryan is explained perfectly and you find yourself able to understand his world. I loved this book for its visual beauty as well as the bizarre and interesting look into his mind. I would definitely recommend this book to anyone that is an art lover and even those who aren’t huge fans. This man’s pictures are brilliant.


Adorable yet subtle. Love these little creatures.
The contours of the faces of the sleeping animals are particularly lovely, (Sleeping Akiko, Deerhoof, Warm Bowl of Sleeping Birds) and I'm so glad someone else appreciates how beautiful manta rays are (Blue Planet - Rays). There is a wonderful slight melancholy, and very occasional horrorishness, that tempers possible twee. 'She Protects Us' could be an illustration of the heroic cat in the Neil Gaiman short story in Smoke and Mirrors.
More pictures here: and here:

Bianca Sarah

Jay Ryan's art never gets old. A fine example of pure Chicago wit in the form of posters for every concert you wish you'd been to. Excellent foreword by Andrew Bird (who really should write more) and a contribution by Joe Meno (who should maybe write a little less, I think).
Features a bonus print of "Bear Wearing Socks Running With Scissors" which makes this book worth any money you spend on it.


Everything about Jay Ryan deserves 5 stars. His work can only get better with time.