01/19/2018

Sally here with a fabulous new exhibition at the Library of Congress, Phoebe Gloeckner in her studio, Brie Moreno, Ramona Fradon, and more!

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Dale Messick, creator of Brenda Starr, Reporter, in 1975

The Library of Congress has a new exhibition – Drawn to Purpose: American Women Illustrators and Cartoonists – which “is dedicated to exploring the lesser-known, centuries-spanning contributions of female artists who broke into these male-dominated fields.” Curated by Martha Kennedy, the exhibition is vast, detailed, and will be up through October 2018.

The exhibit features nearly 70 pieces from in an impressive array of 43 artists, with work from the 19th century to today. The artwork ranges from Alice Barber Stephens’ Impressionist-influenced illustrations to Anne Harriet Fish’s elegant, fine-line drawings that graced more than 30 Vanity Fair covers to Roz Chast’s frenzied and funny cartoons in The New Yorker. Even so, Kennedy saw she had more ground to cover, so she wrote a companion book (out in March) and curated a second rotation of the show, with an entirely different lineup of artists, to replace the current one in mid-May. “There are a lot of women who did really interesting, innovative work who have been overlooked and are worthy of further study,” Kennedy says.

An article on Smithsonian details the exhibition, and it is full of the names of creators and artists to research and get to know. Start there, and then plan a trip to D.C. – or two, if you want to see both halves of the show!

Read all about it HERE.

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Phoebe Gloeckner in her attic studio

The Michigan Daily visited Phoebe Gloeckner recently and talked autobiography and its place in comics.

On one hand, Phoebe argues that stories involving heavier, real topics work well as graphic novels because “the more specific something is, the more relatable it becomes. I think in a sense it’s easier to do that with comics because instead of describing the wallpaper, you’re drawing the wallpaper, it’s there.” The concept that graphic novels allow readers to visualize their characters exactly the way the author sees them, however, is a double-edged sword.

When asked if presenting readers with one specific image made them focus more on the content and less on the imagination, Phoebe responded with questions of her own.

“When you read Maus, do you just accept the person looks like a mouse? Or someone is cartoony with simplified features? This too gives you room to interpret what they look like in real life.”

Gloeckner also discusses her current project, another type of storytelling, but one that “uses cloth dolls and elaborate, miniature film sets to represent the violent scenes of Ciudad Juarez in Mexico.

Read the whole piece HERE.

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Brie Moreno is featured on It’s Nice That, talking about the direction her work has taken recently.

“…Brie also notes that her style has developed as a result of “really turning away from finalising all my drawings on the computer,” she tells It’s Nice That. “I love using the computer for creating guides and altering the size of my compositions, but when it comes to the finished product I’m obsessed with the naive quality of smeared up felt tips, crumpled newsprint and happy accidents.”

In turn, there is a lush tangible quality to each of Brie’s singular drawings. Even when displayed on a digital screen they evoke that crinkly paper texture that develops from layering and layering felt tip pens to make the page a little fluffy. The appearance of this texture has also evolved from Brie experimenting with using A3 newsprint as a base, “I really look forward to seeing the originals fade and deteriorate with time,” she explains.

Plenty more comics and drawings to see HERE.

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  • The Comics Reporter found the drawing pictured above on Roger Langridge’s blog, where Langridge also posted his take on inking Ramona Fradon‘s pencils – I’m just here for Fradon’s Metamorpho however!
  • I’m reading Liz Prince‘s Be Your Own Backing Band at the moment, which collects some of her comics that were first published on the website If You Make It, which is devoted to punk music and culture. Check out her comics HERE.
  • Episode 263 of the Comics Alternative podcast includes a review of The Strumpet #5, around the 44 min. mark – listen HERE.
  • Nidhi Chanani has a comic up on Mutha Magazine – Eggs: A Comic on Stillbirth, Loss, and Breakfast.
  • On PEN America’s Illustrated PEN “Meg Lemke presents cartoonist Lisa Lim’s How I Went From Being An Apolitical to A Little More Political Asian” – HERE.
  • Tegan O’Neil reviews Hazel Newlevant‘s Sugar Town on The Comics Journal.
  • Black Mask is publishing a new comic written by Lonnie Nadler and Zac Thompson which may be interesting – Her Infernal Descent – which is about a middle-aged mother who visits hell, guided by Agatha Christie and William Blake, in an effort to get her family back. The Comics Beat has the story.

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Suzy and Cecil – 1-19-2018 – by Sally Ingraham

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Joanie and Jordie – 1-19-2018 – by Caleb Orecchio

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Sally Ingraham

Sally Ingraham

Sally is a cartoonist, educator, and journalist based in Pittsburgh, PA. She makes comics about Pittsburgh and bird watching, and co-writes the "Suzy and Cecil" daily strip (with Gabriella Tito). She facilitates the Comics Workbook Rowhouse Residency, is a managing editor of the CW Daily News, and runs the CW Roller Derby "of the mind" League. She is focused on documenting the current and historic place of women in the comics industry, is working to build the Women's Comics Library, and is developing a comics curriculum by and for girls.
Sally Ingraham

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