Aaron here today with Lyn Hejinian and Open Comics; Singularity Festival 2017; Lee Krasner


Robert Grenier’s Cambridge M’Ass (1979)

‘The open text is dynamic, and interactive, as reading is most pleasurable when it is active, and incites the imagination.’
Former CW resident Jackie Kirby takes a deep look at Lyn Hejinian’s work and deconstructs comics by Lynda Barry, Robert Grenier, M. Norbese Phillips and Ikeda Ryoko, Alyssa Berg, Michael Deforge, and Andy Burkholder:
Understanding the aesthetic merits of an open text is perhaps made easier by looking at Hejinian’s work in tandem with sociologist Wolfgang Iser’s phenomenological approach to reading (1972). Iser views the meaning and totality of a literary object to be a virtual, dynamic and contradictory thing. Its gestalt, or the perceived unity and oneness from a configuration of parts, does not exist in the text itself, nor in the mind of the reader, but in the co-operation of the two: the act of reading itself. The text is a set of raw materials provided by the author. In a text, information is presented in the form of discretely separated units (in comics, panels; in prose, sentences; in verse, lines) juxtaposed in a pattern according to the author’s artistic desires. Iser writes, “The sentences are ‘component parts’ insofar as they make statement, claims, or observations, or convey information, and so establish various perspectives of the text. But they remain only ‘component parts’—they are not the sum total of the text itself.” These sentences are building blocks of a not-yet-existing meaning, which will be produced through the act of reading the text. Through the reading process, the reader assembles the “component parts” into a coherent whole. In comics, we can think of this as the way a reader navigates through panels to produce meaning. The reader’s imagination and memory give shape to the interaction of distinct parts “foreshadowed” by the sequence and structure of panels. The information present in the material comic is processed through the reader’s imagination and experience, the result being the production of the comic-as-meaningful.


Singularity Festival 2017

南拳北腿 ETH, TONY CHEUNG, 90Kwok联展 December 8-20, 2017 17:00-23:00 Opening December 8, 2017 19:00pm PIL公共形象公司 北京东城区鼓楼东大街206号 No.206, Guloudong St,Dongcheng District, Beijing


Through January 13, 2018, at Paul Kasmin Gallery

Paul Kasmin Gallery, in collaboration with the Pollock-Krasner Foundation, is pleased to announce an inaugural solo exhibition of paintings by Lee Krasner, which will focus on her iconic Umber Paintings. The series consists of only twenty-four paintings, eight of which are held in major institutional collections. The exhibition will be accompanied by a fully illustrated and comprehensive catalogue raisonné on the series with an essay by art historian Dr. David Anfam, Senior Consulting Curator of the Clyfford Still Museum in Denver and curator of the recent exhibition Abstract Expressionism at the Royal Academy, London.

Painted between 1959 and 1962, Krasner’s Umber Paintings were realized during one of her most ambitious periods of creative production following the sudden and tragic loss of her husband, Jackson Pollock. During this time of newfound solitude, Krasner moved into Pollock’s studio at their home in the Springs, East Hampton, which enabled her to experiment on large canvases for the first time. In addition to the increase in scale, this period was also characterized by a further commitment to ‘allover’ compositions, an emphasis on gesturality and an engagement with the individual psyche.

Lee Krasner, Uncaged


The Winter Semester of thee Santoro Correspondence Course for Comic Book Makers starts January 18th 2018! 8 weeks – 500 bux – coaching for as long as you need. The course is hard, but Frank will push your comics making practice to a new level, getting you to think about timing and color in new ways. Makes a great holiday gift for yourself – or for a loved one who is interested in comics. Apply by midnight (EST) on Dec. 25th and get $100 off the course price.

Full details and how to apply can be found HERE!


Vision Box – 12-5-2017 – by Cameron Arthur


Joanie and Jordie – 12-5-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron Cockle here today with Alyssa Berg; Art from Guantánamo Bay; Louise Bourgeois; David Hockney; SF&FB&ZF; Conor Stechschulte


Alyssa Berg

Handmade Riso Postcard Workshop with Alyssa Berg

Join SVA RisoLab Fall 2017 Artist-in-Residence Alyssa Berg for a workshop exploring handmade layers for Risograph printing. After a brief introduction to the basics of Risograph printing and a group demo, workshop attendees will use a variety of materials including tracing paper, pens, pencils, and collage materials to create artwork for a set of two-color Riso printed postcards. No experience is necessary and materials will be provided. We will be making our layers by hand (no computers!). Participants are encouraged to bring four small grayscale/black and white drawings (4.25 x 5.5 inch) or any text/collage materials they might wish to work with to create a set of four postcards.

Alyssa Berg is a painter, comic-artist, and craftsman originally from the Great Northwest and currently living in Brooklyn. After studying painting at Parsons Paris and Hunter College, she began to focus on making painted comics in 2012. In these comics, she investigates and experiments with an array of materials, including collage elements. Her work has appeared in Smoke Signal, INK BRICK, and on the Comics Workbook website where she won the 2015 Composition Competition. alyssaberg.com
Sunday, December 3, 12-3pm: RSVP


Muhammad Ansi

Ode to the Sea: Art from Guantánamo Bay

Detainees at the United States military prison camp known as Guantánamo Bay have made art from the time they arrived. The exhibit will display some of these evocative works, made by men held without trial, some for nearly 15 years, who paint the sea again and again although they cannot reach it.

Moath Al-Alwi

One of the co-curators, Erin Thompson, has an NY Times op-ed piece about the artists and their work:

But last week, the Miami Herald reported a change in military policy: The art of Mr. al-Alwi and the other remaining Guantánamo prisoners is now U.S. government property. The art will no longer leave prison confines and can now legally be destroyed. Attorneys for several prisoners were told the military intends to burn the art.

Art censorship and destruction are tactics fit for terrorist regimes, not for the U.S. military. The art poses no security threat: It is screened by experts who study the material for secret messages before it leaves the camp, and no art by current prisoners can be sold. Guantánamo detainees deserve basic human rights as they await trial. Taking away ownership of their art is both incredibly petty and utterly cruel.


David Salle on the Louise Bourgeois currently at MoMA

You feel that Bourgeois wants to dig down to the basic fiber of form itself en route to creating an image; it’s what drawing can do, after all. A subset of the marks that she uses, especially those made with a brush and ink, have the length and start-and-stop quality of a stitch of thread or embroidery: graphic stitches, which are bundled together and become in turn the building blocks for many of her images. These include the skein or hank of hair or yarn, as well as nerve and muscle fibers, including flayed skin and tissue, which cluster, bale up, and twist, and can become in some works undulating curtains of hairlike walls, or take the form of river currents and ocean waves. The equivalency that Bourgeois draws between hair or yarn and muscle fibers or tissue is one of her principal inventions.

Hair, women’s hair, is all over Bourgeois’s art. It is the perfect graphic element; like water, it can go anywhere and take virtually any shape. It can flow like a river, pass through keyholes, or twist around another form, strangling it. It can take the form of a flying carpet, or be made to cover, or smother, another surface. Or it can be parted to reveal what’s underneath. Hair is something to hide behind, or a memento left behind. The eroticism of hair was also a Surrealist staple, and Bourgeois makes good use of it.

Louise Bourgeois


David Hockney

David Hockney Retrospective at the Metropolitan Museum of Art

Working in a wide range of media with equal measures of wit and intelligence, Hockney has examined, probed, and questioned how to capture the perceived world of movement, space, and time in two dimensions. The exhibition offers a grand overview of the artist’s achievements across all media, including painting, drawing, photography, and video. From his early experiments with modernist abstraction and mid-career experiments with illusion and realism, to his most recent, jewel-toned landscapes, Hockney has consistently explored the nature of perception and representation with both intellectual rigor and sheer delight in the act of looking.



‘On a basic, lifestyle level, moving here and attending school has allowed me to stop working a non-art-related day job (at least for now).’
Conor Stechschulte is interviewed at Just Indie Comics.

Water, of course… It is a recurring element in your comics, and sometimes plays a major role. It may be the ritual river in The Amateurs, the rain from which the facts of Generous Bosom develop, the lake of impalpable but sharp tensions in Glancing, the sea where the games of Water Phase unfold, and Christmas in Prison’s narrative stream. If we consider water as a symbol, it is necessarily multifaceted, fluid, and seems to be related to desire, change, epiphany. It is the place where things happen, stories are told, secrets come to light. Why is water so important to you?

Thank you for tracking this image so comprehensively throughout my work! You’ve done such a good job of outlining how I’ve used water that I’m not sure if I can add anything…

Of the symbolic meanings you’ve listed I identify most with the idea of change. Water is a place where boundaries break down, things dissolve, definitions shift.

With how clear and declarative one must be in telling a story, especially with comics (here’s a guy, now here he is again, see? He’s wearing the same shoes and hat, except now he’s dropped his umbrella, and here he is again but now he’s bending to pick it up), water provides a needed space for vagueness. It’s a place where the closure occurring between each panel might be suspended (or maybe it’s a way of depicting that no-space in between). You can draw a clean, clear black-outlined character for most of your book but if you reflect the same character in a bowl of water, their lines go all wavy. They can be different.

Conor Stechschulte


Vision Box – 11-28-2017 – by Cameron Arthur


Suzy and Cecil – 11-28-2017 – by Gabriella Tito


Joanie and Jordie – 11-28-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron Cockle here today with Amy Lockhart at Anthology Film Archives; Jerry Saltz on Bill Taylor; Austin English on ‘Feininger’s Grandkids’; Spearfishing Explained (in comics format)


At Anthology Film Archives, Thursday, December 7, 7:30pm

An animator with a style and sensibility entirely her own, Amy Lockhart has been drawing pictures of creepy ladies since she was seven years old. Utilizing everything from paper cutouts and puppets to digital tools, Lockhart’s films exude a handcrafted, rough-edged surrealism. Populated primarily by female figures whose body types are as distinctive and transgressive as those of R. Crumb, as well as by a cavalcade of anthropomorphized animals, objects, and shapes, her universe evokes kids-show animation seen through a distinctly demented lens, while also displaying a genuinely childlike, pre-socialized preoccupation with bodily functions. Profoundly intuitive and endlessly surprising, Lockhart’s mysterious and delirious world behaves according to a logic that’s as astonishing as it is inscrutable.

“Amy Lockhart works across a range of mediums including zines, sculptures, paintings, drawings, and animations. Her work exudes an imperfection and oddness that feels very human, at once unpredictable, heartfelt, funny, and disturbing. Many of her works feature an array of stumbling, distorted cartoon characters whose misshapen bodies limp, bend, and bulge, often while smoking, licking, drooling, or crying. Also recurring in her work are disembodied facial features, hands, and limbs, as well as various joyfully rendered muscly women, frequently missing their arms. Such characters drive her work, but there is as much pleasure and interest to be taken in the way they are drawn, animated or constructed as in what they do or who they are. The form of her work has its own rich, non-verbal meaning and content.” – Edwin Rostron, EDGE OF FRAME

SYLVA LINING (1998, 1 min, 16mm)
THE DEVIL LIVES IN HOLLYWOOD (1999, 6 min, 16mm)
MISS EDMONTON TEENBURGER 1983 IN, IT’S PARTY TIME! (2001, 17 min, digital)
MISS EDMONTON TEENBURGER 1983 IN, YOU’RE ETERNAL… (2002, 6 min, digital)
WALK FOR WALK (2005, 10 min, 16mm)
THE COLLAGIST (2009, 2 min, digital)
LANDSCAPE (2012, 8 min, digital)
JESSICA (2014, 5 min, digital)

Total running time: ca. 60 min.

Amy Lockhart, from The Collagist


Jerry Saltz on Instagram

Bill Taylor, via Jerry Saltz’s Instagram


Lyonel Feininger, from The Kin-der-Kids

Austin English at TCJ

I have a personal theory as to why Doucet abandoned comics, one that relates to the context of this column but might not bear out factually. Anyone who wants to correct me should do so. But bear with me: Doucet, being a extremely sophisticated artist, continued to sharpen and evolve. Her mature comics work, My New York Diary, is as sharp a piece of traditional cartooning as one can find in the alternative era. But after that story, Doucet leaves comics. My theory is that Doucet looks at what people define “real” comics as, pushes her work in that direction, and thinks, “Well… why bother with all this if this is what people want?” Her early and later work are, to me, without flaw. But I’d argue that the comics community’s view of what a serious artist must apply themselves to is a pressure that doesn’t need to be grafted on to every artist. And yet the view is so dominant that it’s hard to avoid. Someone like Doucet can master the ins and outs of traditional cartoon integrity but probably notices quicker than most what a closed system it is, how much feeling it excludes and how much one gives up to offer one’s entire art up to it.

Julie Doucet


Artwork by Joyce Rice, script by Micah Lee

‘Instead of opening a sketchy attachment on your computer, upload it to Google Drive and look at it in your web browser.’


Vision Box – 11-21-2017 – by Cameron Arthur


Suzy and Cecil – 11-21-2017 – by Sally Ingraham


Caleb Orecchio – 11-21-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron Cockle today with Comic Sans; Yayoi Kusama; Claes Oldenburg; Jason Shiga; Nancy; Michelangelo Buonarroti


‘Hating Comic Sans Is Ableist’
Lauren Hudgins looks at the Comic Sans font, its detractors, and how people with dyslexia use it to read:

Comic Sans and Arial are readily available because they are included by default in many operating systems and word-processing programs, and they are web-safe fonts. A pamphlet from the office of student services at my sister’s school on accommodations for dyslexic students is printed in Comic Sans on blue paper in both English and Welsh. Other common fonts suggested by the British Dyslexia Association include Century Gothic, Verdana, Calibri, and Trebuchet. (Trebuchet was also designed by Connare.)


Yayoi Kusama: Infinity Mirrors

On Instagram, the Broad’s geotag summons a seemingly endless stream of photos of museumgoers – individuals, couples, children – holding smartphones up to Kusama’s reflective surfaces. The rise of art selfies like these has become a bone of contention among the art world elite, inciting a backlash in Kusama’s case. The New York Times’ Roberta Smith called her “a bit of a charlatan” who “stoops to conquer with mirrored ‘infinity’ rooms that attract hordes of selfie-seekers”. The LA Times went further: “The most interesting feature of the rooms is that looking at the ubiquitous photos of them is as fulfilling as actually being there”. Apartment Therapy meanwhile, declared her David Zwirner exhibition “the Instagram exhibit to end all Instagram exhibits”.

Yayoi Kusama


Claes Oldenburg: Shelf Life

Taken together, the sculptures in Shelf Life represent a compendium of the ideas and objects that have resonated throughout Oldenburg’s life and practice, now revealed in completely new relationships. As an artist pivotal to the evolution of contemporary art throughout the 20th and 21st centuries, Oldenburg has approached this latest period of his career as, he said, “a time to decide what one keeps.” These are the images he has chosen to keep.


The Science of Demon’
Jason Shiga guest-blogging at Locus Mag:

Science fiction has always been my favorite genre, especially when the story takes the form of scientific discovery itself. There’s something incredibly satisfying about the classic scientific method of observing, imagining, testing and finally getting a clear answer from the universe about some fundamental way it’s structured. I feel the human mind has a science shaped keyhole in it and hearing a good story or joke or cleverly designed experiment all satisfy that same part of the brain. It could be Sherlock Holmes figuring out that what everyone else thought was a ghost was just a (spoiler for 100 year old story) dog covered in luminescent paint. In a way, I think all great fiction is science fiction of a sort.

Jason Shiga


Mark Newgarden and Paul Karasik on How To Read Nancy: The Elements of Comics in Three Easy Panels

The 200th meeting of the NY Comics & Picture-story Symposium will be held on Tuesday,  Nov. 14, 2017 at 7pm at Parsons School of Design, 2 West 13th Street, in the Bark Room (off the lobby). Free and open to the public.

Cartoonists and scholars, Paul Karasik and Mark Newgarden use a single three-panel Nancy strip to explain how the medium of comics works.
Everything that you need to know about reading, making, and understanding comics can be found in a single Nancy strip by Ernie Bushmiller from August 8, 1959. Mark Newgarden and Paul Karasik’s groundbreaking work How to Read Nancy (Fantagraphics Books, 2017) ingeniously isolates the separate building blocks of the language of comics through the deconstruction of a single strip.

As much a lecture about visual literacy and the benefits of deep-reading, students, academics, scholars, cartoonists and casual fans will be stunned to understand that the secret language of comics is right before their eyes.

Paul Karasik is the co-author (along with David Mazzucchelli) of the perennial graphic novel classic City of Glass, adapted from Paul Auster’s novel. His cartoons appear in the New Yorker. Paul teaches at the Rhode Island School of Design.

Mark Newgarden is an acclaimed cartoonist and author of the book We All Die Alone, the co-creator of “Garbage Pail Kids”, and the co-author (with Megan Montague Cash) of the award-winning Bow Wow series of children’s books. Mark teaches at Parsons and Pratt Institute.


Michelangelo: Divine Draftsman & Designer

This exhibition presents a stunning range and number of works by the artist: 133 of his drawings, three of his marble sculptures, his earliest painting, his wood architectural model for a chapel vault, as well as a substantial body of complementary works by other artists for comparison and context. Among the extraordinary international loans are the complete series of masterpiece drawings he created for his friend Tommaso de’ Cavalieri and a monumental cartoon for his last fresco in the Vatican Palace. Selected from 50 public and private collections in the United States and Europe, the exhibition examines Michelangelo’s rich legacy as a supreme draftsman and designer.

Michelangelo Buonarroti


Suzy and Cecil – 11-14-2017 – by Gabriella Tito


Joanie and Jordie – 11-14-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Cozytown – 11-14-2017 – by Juan Fernandez [1]


Aaron Cockle today with WHOSE HOPES? WHOSE FEARS? WHOSE VALUES? WHOSE JUSTICE?; Civil Disobedience (at MIT); Brooklyn š! & CAB 2017; Adversarial Objects


Barbara Kruger, Performa 17, Nov 1-19, 2017

Barbara Kruger has issued terse, fine-edged directives in her instantly recognizable—and frequently appropriated—visual style of block text in white Futura Bold font over a blood-red background for more than four decades now. Though she has remained loyal both to her straightforward messages concerning consumerism and feminism, and her canvases of billboards, public buses, newspapers, magazine covers, and buildings, it is ironic that the most visible example of its imitation is by street wear labels, which vacillates between mainstream luxury sportswear and cultivators of a speculative rare-edition consumer class.

For Performa 17, Kruger reclaims her signature style in a high-profile public square in central New York City—a prime branding and real-estate profiting opportunity—by branding a skate park, free and open to the public, as well as its periphery walls, and stairs, with her designs addressing and interrogating ideals around feminism, consumerism, and modern mass media.


List Projects: Civil Disobedience, MIT List Visual Arts Center

Social and political movements are born out of the urgent desire to make abstract principles concrete. Public demonstration is one way to voice opposition to a government’s actions believed to be unjust, illegitimate, or unconstitutional. In the streets and on college campuses, in town halls, churches and prisons, in public parks and reservations, civil disobedience has long been a tool of activism. Whether taking the form of mass occupation or individual statement, political protest is ingrained in American culture.

List Projects: Civil Disobedience is a program of documentaries, news footage, citizen journalism, artist’s films and videos focusing on moments of political resistance and public demonstration from the early 20th century through today. Presenting records from the historical Civil Rights and women’s movements, gay liberation and AIDS activism, the Black Lives Matter movement, and recent Women’s Marches recognize the history of resistance, and considers the role that artists and documentarians play in chronicling and confronting abuses of power and social injustice.

From List Projects: Civil Disobedience

Though this exhibit recently closed, there is a substantial amount of photo and video work from the show posted at Contemporary Art Daily.


Baltic Comics Magazine looks at Brooklyn
Guest-edited by Desert Island’s own Gabe Fowler, the 30th issue of š! features work by Brooklyn area (and Brooklyn-esque?) cartoonists (A. T. Pratt, Alabaster Pizzo, Austin English, Ben Mendelewicz, Caroline Paquita, Courtney Menard, Daniel Zender, Gabrielle Bell, Heather Benjamin, Jane Mai, Jen Tong, Kevin Hooyman, König Lü. Q., Lily Padula, Natalie Andrewson, Rob Corradetti, Sabin Cauldron, Siobhán Gallagher, Thu Tran, Thomas Toye, Tyler Boss, Whit Taylor). A book release will be held at Desert Island on Wednesday, November 8, at 7pm.

Alabaster Pizzo


ALSO, the venerable, venerated Comic Arts Brooklyn festival will be taking place this Saturday, November 11, 2017. More info, including exhibitor and programming details, can be found here.

Map by JR Zuckerberg


Fooling Neural Networks in the Physical World with 3D Adversarial Objects

We’ve developed an approach to generate 3D adversarial objects that reliably fool neural networks in the real world, no matter how the objects are looked at. Neural network based classifiers reach near-human performance in many tasks, and they’re used in high risk, real world systems. Yet, these same neural networks are particularly vulnerable to adversarial examples, carefully perturbed inputs that cause targeted misclassification.

Our process works for arbitrary 3D models – not just turtles! We also made a baseball that classifies as an espresso at every angle! The examples still fool the neural network when we put them in front of semantically relevant backgrounds; for example, you’d never see a rifle underwater, or an espresso in a baseball mitt.


Suzy and Cecil – 11-7-2017 – by Sally Ingraham


Cozytown- 11-7-2017 – by Juan Fernandez


Joanie and Jordie 11-7-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron here today with Schneemann; Walker; Ernst; Reinhardt; Short Run 2017


Carolee Schneemann

Interior Scroll
Here’s something from the Kinetic Painting show at MoMA PS1 (via PS1’s Instagram):

While we can’t show you the photo documentation of Carolee Schneemann’s iconic performance work, “Interior Scroll,” on Instagram, above is a portion of the scroll itself on view in our new exhibition “Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting.” From the second of only two performances of the piece in 1977, the scroll reads:

I don’t
take the
of men
who talk


These powerful reflections were a response to a screening at the Telluride Film Festival, where Schneemann’s films “Fuses” and “Plumb Line” were included in a program entitled “The Erotic Woman.” Schneemann objected to the program for being proscribed by the male imagination, and having a contradictory effect to the films themselves. Explore more documentation of “Interior Scroll” and other seminal performances by Carolee Schneemann in her retrospective #KineticPainting on view through March 11.


‘She said she was thinking of Thomas Eakins’s surgical theater paintings as she was also imagining house slaves disemboweling their master with a soup ladle.’
At the New York Review, Darryl Pinckney looks at the recently closed Kara Walker exhibit, Kara Walker: Sikkema Jenkins and Co. is Compelled to present The most Astounding and Important Painting show of the fall Art Show viewing season!

I sometimes find myself remembering the great Sphinx of white sugar that Kara Walker built three years ago in an unused, emptied-out sugar refinery in Brooklyn along the East River: A Subtlety, or the Marvelous Sugar Baby, an Homage to the unpaid and overworked Artisans who have refined our Sweet tastes from the cane fields to the Kitchens of the New World on the Occasion of the demolition of the Domino Sugar Refining Plant. The refinery was enormous, the walls streaked with sugar. In the distance, the large figure of a Mammy rested in her Egyptian pose, a bandana on her head. The small basket-carrying boys made of dark red molasses who attended her were melting in the summer heat, folding over onto the floor. The large and roving crowd was quiet, as if under a spell. People took photographs of themselves standing between her creamy-looking arms.


Max Ernst: Beyond Painting, Museum of Modern Art, NYC, through January 1, 2018

This exhibition surveys the career of the preeminent Dada and Surrealist artist Max Ernst (French and American, born Germany, 1891–1976), with particular emphasis on his ceaseless experimentation. Ernst began his pursuit of radical new techniques that went “beyond painting” to articulate the irrational and unexplainable in the wake of World War I, continuing through the advent and aftermath of World War II. Featuring approximately 100 works drawn from the Museum’s collection, the exhibition includes paintings that challenged material and compositional conventions; collages and overpaintings utilizing found printed reproductions; frottages (rubbings); illustrated books and collage novels; sculptures of painted stone and bronze; and prints made using a range of techniques. Several major, multipart projects represent key moments in Ernst’s long career, ranging from early Dada and Surrealist portfolios of the late 1910s and 1920s to his late masterpiece—a recent acquisition to MoMA’s collection—65 Maximiliana or the Illegal Practice of Astronomy (1964). This illustrated book comprises 34 aquatints complemented by imaginative typographic designs and a secret hieroglyphic script of the artist’s own invention.

Max Ernst

From MoMA’s Instagram:

Max Ernst’s love of puns was likely fostered by Sigmund Freud’s book “Jokes and Their Relation to the Unconscious.” Here, the Dada artist overpainted a page from a sales catalogue showing women’s hats printed in an orderly grid. Ernst added more cut-and-pasted hats to make the phallic tower at the left. This visual pun relates to Freud’s identification of the hat—the requisite accessory of the bourgeois man—as a common symbol of repressed desire, adding new meaning and gender ambiguity to the cliché inscribed on the work, “C’est le chapeau qui fait l’homme” (“The hat makes the man”).


‘A lot of the best horror movies give you the sense that the movie you’re watching is itself somehow evil.’
Today (Tuesday, October 31, 2017) is Halloween, and what better way to celebrate than looking back at Simon Reinhardt’s reviews of horror movies from this past month. Reinhardt reviews some classics (TBOF, seen below; The Fog) as well as some rarities and gems (Kuroneko; Beyond the Darkness) and newer works (Prevenge; Butter on the Latch). Take a look, maybe your favorite horror movie was reviewed.

Simon M. Reinhardt


SHORT RUN 2017, Saturday, November 4, 2017

Promo materials by Jordan Crane, Eroyn Franklin, and Kelly From

Promo materials by Jordan Crane, Eroyn Franklin, and Kelly From


Suzy and Cecil – 10-31-2017 – by Gabriella Tito


Joanie and Jordie – 10-31-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Cozytown – 10-31-2017 – by Juan Fernandez [1][2]



Aaron here today with Carolee Schneemann; Cathy Wilkes; NARC 2017; CAB 2017; Writers At Risk; Unquotable Trump


Carolee Schneemann. Eye Body: 36 Transformative Actions for Camera.
Courtesy the artist, P.P.O.W, and Galerie Lelong, New York. Photos: Erró
1963/2005. Eighteen gelatin silver prints. 24 x 20″ each (61 x 50.8 cm). The Museum of Modern Art, New York. Gift of the artist. © 2017 Carolee Schneemann.

Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting, October 22, 2017–March 11, 201, MoMA PS1

MoMA PS1 presents the first comprehensive retrospective of Carolee Schneemann, spanning the artist’s prolific six-decade career. As one of the most influential artists of the second part of the 20th century, Schneemann’s pioneering investigations into subjectivity, the social construction of the female body, and the cultural biases of art history have had significant influence on subsequent generations of artists. Carolee Schneemann: Kinetic Painting begins with rarely seen examples of the artist’s early paintings of the 1950s and their evolution into assemblages made in the 1960s, which integrated objects, mechanical elements, and modes of deconstruction. In the late 1960s Schneemann began positioning her own body within her work, performing the roles of “both image and image-maker.” As a central protagonist of the New York downtown avant-garde community, she explored hybrid artistic forms culminating in experimental theater events. The exhibition considers Schneemann’s oeuvre within the context of painting by tracing the developments that led to her groundbreaking innovations in performance, film, and installation in the 1970s, as well as her increasingly spatialized multimedia installations from the 1980s, 1990s, and 2000s.


Cathy Wilkes, October 22, 2017–March 11, 201, MoMA PS1

Eschewing the framing or supports typical to exhibition display, Wilkes emphasizes a direct interaction with her work. There are no pedestals for her work; vitrines are inverted into open containers. As such, limited numbers of visitors are invited to carefully wander among installations whose boundaries are not always obvious or easily discernable, heightening our attention to the shifting relationships she creates between the various elements that comprise her works. In Wilkes’s practice, the process through which art transforms the commonplace has less to do with modern displacements of the readymade than with more cyclical, ancient systems of magical belief. “All objects can become transcendental,” she has noted, even though she feels there is “no need for someone to fully understand.” Wilkes’s art is best approached as a markedly subjective and singular vision—a private world that nevertheless evokes common instabilities and human vulnerabilities recognizable far beyond the confines of her studio.

Cathy Wilkes




North American Risograph Conference
November 16, 2017, 10AM–4PM
Chicago Design Museum
108 North State Street • 3rd Floor
Chicago, IL 60602


PEN America Creates Resource Directory for Artists at Risk
Via Maren Williams at the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund:

In light of ongoing threats to artistic freedom around the world, PEN America this week announced its new resource called the Artists at Risk Connection (ARC). The project aims to connect threatened artists with “emergency funding, housing opportunities, residencies, fellowships and grants, and legal, immigration, and resettlement services” for which they may be eligible.

PEN America Executive Director explained the impetus for ARC in the launch announcement:

Artists face backlash when they push up against intellectual, social, and ideological boundaries. While global campaigns and U.N. resolutions have been mounted to protect journalists and human rights defenders, threats to artists have gotten limited international attention. The Artists at Risk Connection brings together an extraordinary network of global organizations committed to augmenting the assistance available to artists who risk their freedom and their lives in the name of creative expression.


The Unquotable Trump by R. Sikoryak

Cartoonist R. Sikoryak (Terms & Conditions, Masterpiece Comics) draws upon the power of comics and satire to frame President Trump and his controversial declarations as the words and actions of the most notable villains and antagonists in comic book history. Reimagining the most famous comic covers, Sikoryak transforms Wonder Woman into Nasty Woman; Uncle Scrooge into Trump withholding his tax returns; the Black Panther into the Black Voter; the Fantastic Four into the Hombres Fantasticos; and more. Word for word, page by page, Sikoryak drives home the absurdity and the breadth of claims made by the 45th President of the United States.

Cambridge, MA
Saturday, October 21, 2017 – 10:00am to Sunday, October 22, 2017 – 5:00pm

Miassachusetts Independent Comics Expo
University Hall, Lesley University, 1815 Massachusetts Ave

Brooklyn, NY
Tuesday, October 24, 2017 – 7:00pm
powerHouse Arena
28 Adams St. 11201, with Lauren Naturale

Miami, FL
Saturday, November 18, 2017 – 11:00am to Sunday, November 19, 2017 – 6:00pm
Miami Book Fair
Miami Dade College

25% of net proceeds from The Unquotable Trump will be donated to the American Civil Liberties Union.


Suzy and Cecil – 10-24-2017 – by Sally Ingraham


Cozytown- 10-24-2017 – by Juan Fernandez

—————————————————————————————————Joanie and Jordie 10-24-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron here today with E.A. Bethea; Aidan Koch; Kara Walker; Thierry Groensteen; Connor Willumsen


E.A. Bethea

Book of Daze
Domino Books is publishing a collection of E.A. Bethea work:

Bethea, a simple interpretation might offer, chronicles the web of living in the world (and with her work, we are zeroed in on life in New York City, as this collection reveals itself as a truly local work of art about a city that paradoxically rarely receives its due—for every 1,000 works that gloss over the truth of the city, we have a book like this that has its eye on the reality of daily life in the five boroughs) with a heart and a mind sometimes at odds and sometimes simpatico. But Bethea gives us something more complex: at times, the work feels dead-pan as it shifts from exhilaration to resignation without a change in visual presentation, but it’s here where we have a guide to the heart of Bethea’s project. The often uniform nature of the pages and the highly non-uniform nature of what is contained within become a catalog of days or weeks or years. One page offers a subdued period in life, while the next (seemingly) similar page offers a day full of regret. Bethea talks about her work relating to cinema, specifically calling attention to what happens between one of her panels and the next. The shifts in emotion and carefully chosen images alongside highly precise language feel like walking into a film where the entire crew–from director to actor to gaffer—united in one mind to make something highly exquisite.


Transmitter​ ​presents:
In​ ​Search​ ​Of
OCTOBER​ ​20 ​–​ ​NOVEMBER​ ​19,​ ​2017

Transmitter is pleased to present In Search Of, an exhibition pairing the work of Aidan Koch and Dawit L. Petros, two artists who, despite their disparate media, take related approaches to pictorial space in order to create open-ended narratives, notable as much for the space within them as for the connections between different moments. Taking its title from Bas Jan Ader’s In Search of the Miraculous, this exhibition considers these artists’ work in terms of questions and histories of migration, and the search, whether for the sublime or for survival, which underlies human movement. In addressing these issues, Koch and Petros both make significant use of abstraction, and range in their interests from a mythological past to the factual present, and beyond, to the possible future.

Aidan Koch


‘A prominent critic posted on Instagram that they felt “uncomfortable” being in the room, perhaps a desired effect of the artist.’
Jessica Bell Brown at Hyperallergic takes another look at the Kara Walker show that recently closed:

Ironically, most of the works in Walker’s show will go to museums that will proudly collect them, while for the sake of political neutrality many will likely remain timid when the time comes to roll up their sleeves and speak truth to power. As difficult and divisive as her images are, they point to a reckoning that we can no longer afford to ignore. Racism will remain inseparable from America’s history, its present, and its future. It penetrates every crevice and corner of our institutions, and pervades every fiber of our collective being. Walker’s work does not signal an impending culture war; it is a reminder that the previous ones never ended.


‘Overall, I’m glad this book exists.’
Nick Mullins on Ann Miller’s translation of Thierry Groensteen’s COMICS AND NARRATION:

The other major theme in this book, which I briefly mentioned above, is rhythm. Groensteen mostly discusses panel layout, but also considers how words affect rhythm. While I liked this, I wished that he had gone further. Layout creates rhythm of course, but so does the relative visual density of the panels. So does the amount of time in the intervened. As I showed above, Groensteen hints at this possibility. Again, the fact the Jason chooses to end his page with a panel that implies a longer space of intervened time creates a change in rhythm to the end of the page. If Groensteen didn’t say this explicitly, he pointed the way. In other words, he has invited us to continue where he left off, which is one of the great gifts of well-written theory.



Anti-Gone En Plein Air
Connor Willumsen provides some insights (‘Cartooning is a lot like magic’, ‘Sometimes I ask myself, why would I want to be a cartoonist?’) in this new video, published by Koyama Press 2017, directed by Fatine-Violette Sabiri.

Get a copy of Anti-Gone, along with two zines – a 20 page bootleg, and a special collage zine – as well as a unique Anti-Gone drawing, as part of the exclusive Connor Willumsen bundle from Comics Workbook – available HERE.

Brian Nicholson reviews Anti-Gone, calling it the “book of the year”.


Suzy and Cecil – 10-17-2017 – by Gabriella Tito


Cozytown – 10/17/2017 – by Juan Fernandez [1] [2]



Aaron here today with ARTZINES; Kurt Ankeny; Brigitte Findakly and Lewis Trondheim; Gary Panter; Juan Fernández


Antoine Lefebvre, from ARTZINES #6: Show and Tell

ARTZINES is a transmedia research project run by artist publisher antoine lefebvre editions. This research project aims to produce a reference book on the subject of contemporary art zines. As an artist researcher, it is important for lefebvre to imagine new creative ways of doing research. Therefore, ARTZINES.INFO will allow the public to access the unedited data of this research project as it is collected. This online database and the zines produced by ARTZINES during this research process will show the progress made toward the publication of the book.


Kurt Ankeny: Mining the Mind’s Eye
Kurt Ankeny talks about the reasoning and philosophy behind why he finds drawing from imagination and memory such a strong approach to cartooning, and how this creates deeper truths via non-photographic image making.

The 195th meeting of the NY Comics & Picture-story Symposium will be held on Tuesday,  Oct. 10, 2017 at 7pm at Parsons School of Design, 2 West 13th Street, in the Bark Room (off the lobby). Free and open to the public.

Kurt Ankeny, from In Pieces: Someplace Which I Call Home


Brigitte Findakly and Lewis Trondheim, from Poppies of Iraq

‘This humorous episode takes on additional absurdity when the subject shifts to a military coup on the next page.’
Mark Peters at Salon.com has some nice things to say about the new book by Brigitte Findakly and Lewis Trondheim, Poppies of Iraq:

Like any great comic, even one about the real world, “Poppies of Iraq” creates its own reality for readers to get lost in — a world told via plain, blunt language and non-realistic, cartoony figures that interweave the personal and political. One of the most subtly brutal sequences in the book involves a marriage. In a tense two pages, Trondheim presents three short conversations consisting of the words “So?” and “Completely.”


Gary Panter

Gary Panter: HIPPIE TRIP, Oct 12 — Nov 11, Marlborough Contemporary Viewing Room, 545 West 25th Street, NYC.
Via Dan Nadel.


Expanding the Festival Toolkit
If you haven’t already, please take a look at Juan Fernández’s post about future possibilities and approaches to comics festivals:

Centralize Sales
Our current system is embarrassingly inefficient. It is an ineffective use of getting tens of dozens of skilled comics makers and storytellers in one city for a week or weekend. No more exhibitors expected to stand behind tables hawking wares. Nowadays with everyone behind tables, people are barely interacting. There’s a vital cross-pollination that just doesn’t happen.
What does it look like when a show does away with the flea market model? One thought is that you establish a festival shop.
You get an experienced comics retailer to run the shop. You have them hire a trusted staff. You pay that staff. The shop gets a cut. 30/70. In a model like this, it costs you no money to have your work available.
Under this new kind of model, if you are a guest you sign up to be involved in citywide comics programming. Signings, gallery exhibitions, lectures, workshops. This is the kind of thing that you get Arts and Cultural councils involved in. You sign up because you want to be part of the programming.
With a model like this, you free up the artists and suddenly new horizons open up. Among those horizons are sources for financing. Imagine collaborating with a city’s municipal parks: guided bike tours where throughout the tour you make stops, learn about the city while doing landscape drawings and comics strips of the experience… A series of readings at a bookstore. Gallery exhibitions. Movie screenings at an arthouse theater. There are so many venues that would be amenable to programming: libraries, universities, community centers, theaters, bookstores, parks… Most of these venues have programming budgets that could fund materials and labor for artists.


Suzy and Cecil – 10-10-2017 – by Sally Ingraham


Joanie and Jordie – 10-10-2017 – by Caleb Orecchio


Aaron here today with the continuing Cartoon Crossroads Columbus recap.


If you haven’t already, please take a look at Caleb Orecchio’s excellent write-up of the recent Cartoon Crossroads Columbus festival. Caleb pretty much covers the entire show, it’s definitely worth the read.


I was in attendance at that show as well, but only managed to take a few photos.

Winsor McCay’s watercolor board, at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum

Display of Air Pirates Funnies, Vol. 1 No. 1, at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum

Floor shot of the show, around 3pm on Saturday

The lovely topiary garden behind the Columbus Downtown Library

Jon ‘Ohio Is For Sale’ Allen, spending all of his earnings at the Sunday after-party

Some downtown Columbus trivia


Suzy and Cecil – 10-3-2017 – by Gabriella Tito