Many of you were first exposed to Gary Panter through his early "Jimbo" comix in Slash and RAW magazines. Or maybe through his brilliant work as set designer for Pee Wee's Playhouse. Old school Seattle residents recall his ubiquitous posters for the Screamers, plastered all over town by the late punk performance artist Tomato du Plenty. An industrial-strength adhesive allowed this alluring image to remain visible for the better part of a decade, becoming one of the enduring motifs of the Northwest punk school. Panter's comix appeared prominently in the seminal Seattle music magazine The Rocket. (Coincidentally, he later married former Rocket art director Helene Silverman.) Come meet Gary at his Dal Tokyo art exhibition and book signing this Saturday, September 8 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. We'll be taking attendance.
Our friend Matt Silvie dropped by Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery on Saturday to present our "Best Comic Store" award from the Seattle Weekly. He was soon followed by Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn. I enlisted Matt to take this snapshot. (Hizzoner flanked by me and Martin Imbach of Georgetown Records.) McGinn was enamored of our gorgeous Johnny Gruelle collection, astutely observing the work had a "dark quality." Always nice to see the mayor, who has become a frequent visitor to our colorful Georgetown arts community.
Seeing Enid and Rebecca on the cover of the current issue of Juxtapoz art journal reminded me of a similar feature I wrote on Daniel Clowes in the same publication in March of 2001. The Ghost World film was about to be released. Clowes was thrilled at the artistic freedom he and filmmaker Terry Zwigoff enjoyed. "We're below the radar at MGM," he observed. I was unfamiliar with young Scarlett Johansson, describing her as "a former child actress who played opposite Robert Redford in The Horse Whisperer."
Who would've guessed that Clowes and Ghost World would go on to have such a profound effect on American pop culture? Not me.
The Fantagraphics family is saddened by the loss of Australian musician Eric "Ren" Reynolds. Former bandmate of current Fantagraphics sales manager Martin Bland (Lubricated Goat) and former warehouse worker Mark Arm (Bloodloss), Reynolds was a longtime Seattle resident. Known affectionately as "Ren," [and commonly as Renestair E.J., Martin informs us – Ed.] we trust people won't be alarmed by his sharing the name of our very-much-alive associate publisher Eric Reynolds. "Ren" was a funny dude and talented musician. We'll miss him.
In an ongoing effort to nurture young talent and provide a showcase for emerging artists, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery presents “The Massive World of Mini Comics.” This exhibition features art created by young students who attended an 826 Seattle workshop devoted to comic zines taught by Seattle cartoonists Max Clotfelter, Ben Horak and Tim Miller, and facilitated by Fantagraphics Books and Alex Bleecker, program coordinator for 826 Seattle. The opening on Saturday, July 14, and the work will remain on display through August 9.
Instructors Clotfelter, Horak and Miller are active participants in Seattle’s lively small press and self-publishing comics movement. 826 Seattle is a nonprofit writing and tutoring center dedicated to helping youth, ages 6-18, improve their creative and expository writing skills, in addition to helping teachers inspire students to write. The Seattle chapter is part of 826 National, founded in 2002 by acclaimed author Dave Eggers and educator Ninive Calegari.
The opening on Saturday, July 14 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM coincides with the colorful Georgetown Art Attack featuring visual and performing arts presentations throughout the historic arts community. Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street at Airport Way S. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Swing on by July 14th or after to experience youth developing their writing skills through the medium of comics!
One of the reasons I came to work at Fantagraphics in 1991 was the presence of late art director Dale Yarger. We'd worked together at The Rocket, where he designed Bruce Pavitt's monthly Sub Pop column and refined the logo of the future record label. He later designed the catalog for the landmark Misfit Lit comix exhibition when I was curator at CoCA. He left Fantagraphics to join the fledgeling alternative newspaper The Stranger, creating a look that remains largely intact today.
I've always been fond of Dale's graphic sensibility - contemporary, yet absent fleeting trends of the moment. Timeless, in other words. Please join us on Sunday afternoon at Fantagraphics Bookstore as we remember this remarkable artist and dear friend. Gone too soon.
Graphic artist Dale Yarger was at the center of activity in Seattle throughout the 1980s and '90s as our city prepared to engage popular culture on a global scale. Yarger's tenure at The Rocket magazine in the 1980s included designing Bruce Pavitt's monthly Sub Pop column, where he refined the look and the ubiquitous logo of the future record label. He moved from there to the position of head art director at Fantagraphics Books during the formative period of alternative comix. He later left to become art director of The Stranger and helped guide that magazine to regional prominence and a national profile. Sadly, Yarger lost a long battle with cancer and passed away earlier this year at the age of 61.
The public is invited to celebrate the legacy of this remarkable artist at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery on Sunday, July 1st from 4:00 to 8:00 PM. "A Tribute to Dale Yarger" will include an exhibition of Dale's memorable design work, along with testimonials and anecdotes from his many friends and colleagues in Seattle. Please join us. The exhibition will remain on view through July 10, 2012.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle's historic Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
The FantaMenace is our entry in Hazardfactory's annual Power Tool Races at the Georgetown Carnival next Saturday. Powered by a Makita disc sander and built by Close Enough Engineering on a concept by Larry and Bella, this tool is wicked quick. We plan a triumphant return to the podium this year after our 2010 victory in the Georgetown Chainsaw Massacre. Don't miss Joe Sacco, Girl Trouble, Bubble Man and so much more. Free fun all day long. Listen to Fantgraphics Bookstore curator Larry Reid discuss the Carnival with Marco Collins on Tuesday at 3:30 PM on Jet City Streamradio.
Please join us at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery as we welcome two of the country’s most acclaimed contemporary cartoonists: Jeffrey Brown on Saturday, June 2 and Joe Sacco on Saturday, June 9. These remarkable artists represent the current diversity of alternative comix and their potential to impact both popular and political culture.
Upon graduating from the Art Institute of Chicago, Jeffrey Brown came to the attention of comix readers with works dealing with relationships and romantic misadventures. His primitive rendering style complemented his candid observations in a series of accessible graphic novels comprising the “Girlfriend Trilogy.” His recent work has taken a turn to humor and satire. Public response to his latest book, Darth Vader and Son (Chronicle Books, April 2012), has been nothing short of phenomenal. Brown imagines the Dark Lord in the role of “Father Knows Best” to mischievous young Skywalker. At once ridiculous and revealing, Darth Vader and Son resonates with generations of Star Wars fans. As co-writer of the new movie, Save the Date, Brown will appear at the Seattle International Film Festival with director Michael Mohan following screenings on Thursday, May 31 and Friday, June 1. This romantic comedy, nominated for a Grand Jury Prize at this year’s Sundance Film Festival, also features Brown’s comics. At his appearance at Fantagraphics Bookstore on June 2 at 6:00 PM, Brown will discuss his comix career followed by a book signing and informal reception.
Joe Sacco’s journalism studies at the University of Oregon informed his career in comix. Following a trip to the occupied territories of the Middle East in 1991, Fantagraphics Books published his provocative comic book series Palestine. Sacco’s unfiltered portrayal of the tragic consequences of the continuing conflict helped alter American perceptions of Palestinian refugees. Now in its 14th printing, Joe Sacco’s Palestine is widely regarded as one of the transformative works in the comix medium. He has subsequently visited other regions ravaged by war and reported on the suffering of civilian populations, including atrocities in the Balkans (Safe Area Gorazde), Chechnya (Chechen War, Chechen Women), and elsewhere. His latest work, Journalism (Metropolitan Books, June 2012), collects Sacco’s documentary reports from North Africa, India, Iraq, and other areas of social and political unrest. Sacco will discuss his unique approach to comix and journalism prior to signing books at Fantagraphics Bookstore from 6:00 to 8:00 PM on Saturday, June 9. Arrive early and enjoy the colorful Georgetown Carnival arts festival featuring lively visual and performing arts presentations throughout the historic neighborhood.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street (at Airport Way S.) minutes south of downtown Seattle in the heart of the historic Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
Jeffrey Brown discussion and book signing Saturday, June 2, 6:00 to 8:00 PM
Joe Sacco discussion and book signing Saturday, June 9, 6:00 to 8:00 PM
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