Many people know that David Wojnarowicz was an excellent artist, but fewer probably know that he was also an excellent writer. 7 Miles a Second, originally put out by DC Comics in 1996 and recently republished by Fantagraphics Books, is a memoir comprised of personal stories mixed with dreams, hallucinatory images, and social commentary.
CHICAGO — In case you haven’t been keeping up with the school closing crisis in Chicago or the continuing escalation of gun violence, the experience of youth in the hella screwed-up public education system just became even more brutal. The Chicago Board of Education is now defending the classroom ban of Marjane Satrapi’s Persepolis in 7th through 10th grade classrooms, satisfying its desire to dictate and restrict how the book is read and taught.
Last Saturday, November 10th’s Brooklyn Comics and Graphic Festival one-day fair was a packed event that featured close to a hundred exhibitors that attracted thousands of fans from across the city. The enthusiasm on the two-floors of Our Lady of Mt. Carmel’s church hall in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, was palpable and the quality of publications were high — did I mention graphic novelist Ben Katchor and Chris Ware (among others) were there signing books?
In July 2004, The New York Times Magazine signaled the advent of the “literary” comic book and described how a significant group of cartoonists — including Chris Ware, Daniel Clowes, Seth and Marjane Satrapi — had popularized these “comics with a brain.”
This week… the Rothko Chapel at 40, artists and their audiences, Ai Weiwei 25 yrs ago, ageism & photographers, honeybees & humans design together, the commerce of fan art, Tintoretto at the Venice Biennale, AIDS at 30, IBM & the Met collaborate to preserve art, Kickstarter is the 3rd largest comic book publisher in America.
US-focused graphic novel publisher Tokyopop, founded in 1997, has announced that it will be closing the doors on its American operation on May 31. Tokyopop was the first to publish Japanese manga (comics, or graphic novels) in their original, un-flipped state and did much to popularize what has been called the “manga revolution.”
Many of you will know that I’ve been critical of the conventional art review and how it doesn’t appear well suited to a lot of art that is produced today. So, in the interest of trying new art review forms, I’ve given a shot at using the graphic novel format for my review of Celso’s ¡No Habla Español! at Pandemic Gallery in Williamsburg.
His graphic sensibility seemed a perfect fit for this style. I couldn’t resist producing a short review of the show in this pop culture-friendly form.
Today’s cutest news of the day ever: superstar comic artist James Kochalka, of American Elf fame, has just been named the Cartoonist Laureate of Vermont. He is the second Cartoonist Laureate in the United States; the only other state to have one is Alaska. Random? Yes. Awesome? Definitely.
The New Adventures of Grossmalerman is a pulpy dime-store comic jaunt through the art world, suitable for anyone with a sense of humor, but especially for those with an underlying cynicism about their own art world adventures. Which makes pretty much all of us. The comic, published by Regency Arts Press and created by Guy Richards Smit, chronicles the life of Jonathan Grossmalerman, a late-career German painter “obsessed with fucking” and in possession of a large drinking problem. Think Archie on too many drugs with a predilection for large canvases of women bending over.