The last Friday in August! We made it! It’s been a weird month – but this week was full of interesting things, like “one-page graphic novels” with Françoise Mouly and Art Spiegelman, Shannon Wright comics on The Nib, Nicole Claveloux being published in English, an ocean-spanning exchange between Ulli Lust and Priya Kuriyan, sketchbook pages from Sacha Mardou, a look at Afua Richardson, and Jillian Tamaki in The New York Times.
Françoise Mouly presented a piece in The New Yorker about the “one-page graphic novels” that have stuck in her husband’s head over the years. Art Spiegelman has often been called the “father of graphic novels” but has only recently started softening to the idea.
“Spiegelman decided it was time to embrace the term that has come to characterize “an ambitious comic book,” whether the narrative is drawn on one page or three hundred. “Since comics is the art of compression, I started looking back on the one-pagers which either in terms of their subject matter or in terms of their resonance had stayed in my brain,” he said.“
The New York Review of Books announced that it will be publishing The Green Hand and Other Stories by Nicole Claveloux in 2017. This collection is the first of Claveloux’s work that will appear in English, and it includes an introduction by Daniel Clowes. Clowes writes:
“The artwork…is some of the most beautiful ever created for our lowly form—vivid, dreamlike, with intensely vivid hand-separated colors unlike anything I’ve ever seen.“
These short stories were originally published in the 1970’s. Read more about the book HERE.
Here on Comics Workbook we are happy to present new sketchbook pages from Sacha Mardou. Her recent visit to St. Louis’ Magic House (a children’s museum) left her somewhat underwhelmed, but at least she had time to draw…!
Ulli Lust (author of Today Is the Last Day of the Rest of Your Life) met Priya Kuriyan in Delhi, India, this spring, and they began an interesting project together. As Ulli Lust writes on Electrocomics:
“Priya Kuriyan draws portraits of people in Delhi since years and so does Ulli Lust in Berlin. They met this spring in India and decided to begin a visual dialog: One sees an interesting person and sends the drawing to the other one to find an opponent on the other side of the planet.“
Here are the first results of this unique pen-pal exchange –
Their second exchange can be viewed here – and it includes more of the stories behind each drawing. We’ll have to keep an eye on the site for more as the year progresses.
Check out work by Afua Richardson, one of the artists working on Marvel’s Black Panther spin-off World of Wakanda.
Afua Richardson has been working in the comics industry since 2004, when Brandon Graham got her a gig at NBM publishing. There is a lot of buzz about the series she is currently working on, stemming from the early July upheaval about Marvel’s attempts at diversity. Back in May, Richardson already had a lot to say about that to Ian Freeman at The Urban Daily:
“Diversity is not just planting a black person or a gay person or a woman in a character normally held by caucasian men. It’s getting into the minutia of the human experience. Stories ages ago had common tropes and icons that were not even realistic to what would be considered the “White experience” – one-dimensional, straight-path good guys and unreasonably evil bad guys who explain their plans just for them to be foiled. That’s not reality. Even terms like white and black when describing people almost do a disservice because there is so much baggage with these terms. White = automatically racist, easier life and decedents of slave owners. And that’s just not factually correct in every case. Black in no way defines the cultural variety, philosophy or culture of the individual in question. But comics were a very niche industry that were created by a small group of people who had to answer to an even smaller group of editors and executives who wanted to make sure they spoke to their client base.
Now that that base has expanded, people can speak with their dollars and back the books they want to see made. Falcon as Captain America says to comic readers that an African-American man can hold the mantle of Captain and American. Its not politically correct to show the variables in philosophy illustrated in fiction. It’s realistic.” – Afua Richardson
Over on The New York Times there is a good interview with Jacqueline Woodson – which you should definitely check out – but I mention it because Jillian Tamaki did the accompanying illustration. Rad.
See you next week! – Sally