Aaron here today with Mardou on Clowes; Bianca Xunise Comics; Research & Destroy NYC; European Abstract Formalist Comics; A bystander’s guide to help the person who’s being targeted
Featured this week: On Being a Woman in the Manly World of Daniel Clowes
Sacha Mardou takes an in-depth look at the role of women in Clowes’s work. Another strong piece from the CW Roller Derby League.
Julie Patheticstein and Violet Vanderplatz are two wronged women who team up in an unlikely friendship. Patience endures a humiliating stage in her development under the kind mentoring of the older waitress, Nancy. And Vida just adores her old grandmother, the fading poetess Ida Wentz. There’s a subtle alter-world of quiet kindness and acceptance in his books and when you look for the women, you’ll find it there. It would be a miserable life for the men if not for this quiet, subplotted influence. Even grumpy-pants Wilson benefits from the tender mercies of his daughter, and then from his life companion, Shelly.
RESEARCH & DESTROY
The zine collective Research and Destroy New York City has made a good deal of their protest relevant material available online, including RIOT CONTROL; SUPERSTORM SANDY AND NEW YORK CITY’S DARK RECOVERY,OR, THINGS TO BE SEIZED DURING THE COMING INSURRECTION; and RULES FOR PICKETING.
The chunky, semi-glossy self-published work provides a singular view of the uprising quite separate from the breaking news of the national media or the think pieces churned out after the unrest. A few examples: “now Freddie broke his own neck…so why it take yall so long to tell the public @BaltimorePolice”; “they keep hollerin bout gangs, WE DON’T EVEN HAVE GANGS LIKE THAT NOMORE.”; “yall need to purge a fucking book w/ yall low ass gpa’s.”
Collectively, these tweets can teach us things. They send us back to those days when we didn’t know what was happening or what was going to happen next during the violence on Saturday, April 25 downtown, and the rioting on Monday, April 27, and amid the making-it-up-as-they-go-along week of protests prior to that. The tweets capture the larger thing that we keep calling “the uprising” and the “is a revolution happening before our very eyes” excitement and worry. One tweet just declares, “Looking at a lot of shit different now.”
Why “European” Abstract Formalist Comics? The above-listed works are mostly by French artists and all are by Europeans. There are only few Abstract Formalist Comics in other regions. ITDN (2016) by Andy Burkholder and artist books by Sol LeWitt (USA), Re/Forma (2014) by Luis Aranguri (Brazil), 9gbb (2016) by Ryukyung Hotel (South Korea) and works by Yuichi Yokoyama and Tiger Tateishi (Japan) are exceptions, rather than the norm, in their countries and continents.
WHAT TO DO WHEN YOU ARE WITNESSING ISLAMOPHOBIC HARASSMENT: A bystander’s guide to help the person who’s being targeted
This came out at the end of August, and has been making the various social media rounds again in light of recent events. By Marie-Shirine Yener at The Middle Eastern Feminist.