Perfect Nonsense tells the complete story behind one of the most innovative and under-rated Golden Age artists, classic children's illustrators, and nonsense poets in American history. For more than 50 years, George Carlson created thousands of distinctive and dynamic cartoons, comics, riddles, and games that thrilled both children and adults with their fanciful spirit and nonsensical humor. There has never been a career retrospective of this startling cartoonist and illustrator — until now!
Carlson's inspired cartoons — ranging from the intellectual to the surreal — place him at home with not only acknowledged masters of American humor like George Herriman, S. J. Perelman, Milt Gross, Bill Holman, and Jack Kent, but also globally celebrated absurdists like Beckett, Pirandello, and his life-long inspiration, Lewis Carroll.
Carlson also made his mark as an accomplished designer of more serious themes including magazine covers, political cartoons, advertisements, locomotive and naval illustration, and, most famously, the original book jacket for the first edition of Margaret Mitchell's Gone With the Wind. Now, after more than 15 years of searching, compiling, and conjuring, the incredible depth of George Carlson's artistry and ingenuity finally gets the comprehensive treatment it has so long deserved with copious full color examples of material both exquisite and obscure. Alongside plentiful cartoons, individual drawings, and comics (including Carlson's "ghost" work on Gene Byrnes' Reg'lar Fellers), this edition offers a meticulously researched critical introduction, rare examples of original art and unpublished projects, and a biographical timeline of Carlson's first three decades as a commercial artist drawing on recently unearthed artifacts from the Carlson family estate.
Perfect Nonsense focuses on Carlson's prolific work as a gag cartoonist, children's illustrator, commercial designer, and art instructor from 1907 to just before World War II. Decades before his celebrated Jingle Jangle Comics, Carlson forever altered the nature of children's publishing during his tenure as chief artist and designer for the pioneering children's pulp, John Martin's Book. Carlson turned the magazine itself into a toy, filled with seasonal games, holiday cut-outs, curious crosswords, graphic exercises, puzzles, riddles, rebuses, and more.
As Carlson himself once observed, his early works brim with a unique spirit of happiness and fun. We have not only captured the very best of that spirit in this collection, but also the many secrets behind its legacy. Loaded with wonder and wit, the creations of George L. Carlson will inspire cartoon and comics aficionados, teachers of children's media, scholars of American humor, and anyone interested in the ever-evolving landscapes of image and language.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery opened seven years ago in Seattles Georgetown industrial district. In the intervening years, both the bookstore and the neighborhood have woven themselves into the cultural fabric of the region. Celebrate the impact of this unique urban enterprise on Saturday, December 14 with a festive holiday gala and opening reception for "cARToons: The Art of Alternative Comix" featuring Jeremy Eaton, Ellen Forney, Damon Gentry, John Ohannesian, Jesse Reklaw, and Jim Woodring. Exhibiting artists will be present to sign recent publications at the opening on Saturday, December 14 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM.
The bookstore's anniversary coincides with the holiday edition of the Georgetown Art Attack. Dozens of visual and performing arts presentations take place throughout the historic neighborhood, including wandering carolers from Choir of the Sound featuring our own Lynn Emmert.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.), only minutes south of downtown Seattle. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
We're pleased to present the enigmatic prologue to Nijigahara Holograph by Inio Asano as a free, downloadable preview. After a flash of disparate images (butterflies, twin babies, a notebook, a tunnel, a headless animal, a falling or floating body), the scene opens in a hospital as a young man attends to his ailing father, then meets a mysterious old man outside who seems to know him. A couple of quick scene shifts — a man in a lonely apartment, a couple having sex, a man interviewing a woman — and we flash back to a sad but curious schoolgirl, a found corpse, a schoolyard confrontation, a spooky vision, and a heart-stopping incident. How do they all tie together? Why don't you pre-order the book and find out when it comes out in February?
The time to fa-la-la and fill your friends' bookshelves will excellent graphic novels and comics is here! Fantagraphics Books is excited to be participating in the American Express Holiday Pop Up Shop in Seattle's historic Pioneer Square neighborhood. Conveniently located on the corner of Western Ave and University St (55 University St), the AmEx Holiday Pop Up Shop brings local businesses together to showcase a collection of merchandise all under one roof.
Fantagraphics Books will be slinging our wares from December 11th through the 16th. In this time, we will be providing shoppers the opportunity to browse some of our latest releases, plus a few classic favorites. Come on down and pick up a gift for that special someone (but also feel free to spoil yourself with a comic or two). Don't fret, if you can't make it to the Pop Up Shop, you can always find us at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery located in the beautiful Georgetown neighborhood.
We've got it all on display, original graphic novels, classic reprints, underground comics and haunting novels (some Seattle-centric!)
VENUE INFO Alki Art Gallery and Event Space 55 University Street at corner of Western Ave. Seattle, WA 98101
Look how much fun Jacq is having reading the fun and fiesty Unlovable!
STORE HOURS: Sunday - Thursday 10am-‐7pm Friday & Saturday 10am-‐8pm
Jen curls up with the new color Peanuts Every Sunday (and talks about herself in 3rd person!)
"Cheers Johnny! Thanks for the knife to the cock!" – Guy Davis
"For those who find filthy, blotchy tactile ink clots, überviolence, or body horror even remotely appealing, you need to buy this and its predecessors immediately." – Slate
"There's no point in trying to explain Prison Pit. You can only experience it to understand it. Start buy buying all of them at once if you haven't yet... It wears its intentional stupidness and violence on its sleeve while also showing off Johnny Ryan's sophisticated sense of composition and black and white ink prettiness." - Nick Gazin, VICE
"Hey are you doing any more scary guys made out of tar ripping each other's dicks off? You know why I like those? Because you don't have to read all them stupid words and stuff. Right? Haa ha, hey Johnny wanna come over and play? Ha Ha!" – Tony Millionaire
"The Prison Pit series has produced some of the best gay erotic comics in recent memory... without consciously setting out to do so. It could easily be subtitled 'A Complex Cycle of Penetration and Regeneration.' Johnny pumps this hyper-masculine orgy of violence and sex so far beyond bursting, it can't help but tip over to the queer side. It is a prison, after all." – Ed Luce (Wuvable Oaf)
"The continuing adventures of Johnny Ryan’s most violent fantasies run amuck, [Prison Pit] is rapidly becoming the comic that I look forward to the way a fat kid looks forward to syrup-encrusted cake. There’s no getting around the hoary old cliche — 'these aren’t for everybody' — so God help you if you can’t figure out a way to enjoy these books." - Tucker Stone, Flavorwire
"Prison Pit is the black metal of comics.... If it doesn't make you sick, you shouldn't be allowed to walk among the public in the first place. If it doesn't make you giddy for the next one, you don't deserve comics." - David Harper, Multiversity Comics
"Like Yokoyama's manga, it's all surface cause & effect & somehow full of weird associations & meanings. It resonates deep." – Sammy Harkham
Prison Pit is Johnny (Angry Youth Comix) Ryan's ongoing taboo-busting sci-fi-prison-planet-body-mutation-splatterfest epic extravaganza, beloved by everyone from the legendary Gary Panter ("GLOREGEFULL!") to Booklist ("Not to be missed").
In the latest installment, our hero Cannibal Fuckface still isn't dead, so the Prison Boss plays what may be his last card: The Holocaust Brothers. But before CF battles the Ho-Bros he's got to destroy his arch-enemy, the seemingly indestructible Slitt, who happens to be the only one who knows how to get the hell out of the Prison Pit.
The author promises: "Every single testicle in the world will explode with rage when Prison Pit 5 is unleashed."
At last, all of Tony Millionaire's "Sock Monkey" stories (to date) are collected between two covers — and what covers they are, thanks to designer Jacob Covey — in one omnibus compendium. Sock Monkey Treasury swings into stores in February.
Our downloadable excerpt comprises one complete story and then some. In "Heaven," Uncle Gabby makes a celestial discovery and enlists Mr. Crow to help him investigate. Will their expedition lead to paradise or folly? Plus, a chunk of the full-color "Uncle Gabby" story to marvel at, and the Table of Contents for your information.
• Savannah, GA: Spooky Girls is a combined show by artists Austin Highfield and Dame Darcy that examines the duality of 2D and 3D art work. Please join them for an opening night of supernatural revelry from 6:00 to 8:00 PM! (more info)
Our elves have been busy and 10 more of our Spring-Summer 2014 titles are now newly ready for pre-ordering action. More will become available as they're built into our bookkeeping system (which can be an irregular process) so continue to stay tuned...
Register and Login to receive full member benefits, including members-only special offers, commenting privileges on Flog! The Fantagraphics Blog, newsletters and special announcements via email, and stuff we haven't even thought of yet. Membership is free and spam-free, so Sign Up Today!