MoCCA was a BLAST, as usual. PR Director, Jacq Cohen, and I showed up early on Friday to set up the table. People couldn't wait for Saturday, clumping around the new books. Our two newest EC Comics Library releases featuring Al Williamson and Jack Davis' work are creating a heartbreakingly beautiful rainbow.
One side of the set-up table!
Friday night was Dash Shaw's opening for his New School art exhibition and 30th birthday at Desert Island. His fianceé (sorry, ladies and germs) made a cake that was uber-delicious. Below, Dash talks about his new comics.
Party hardy, Gabrielle Bell is talking to Ariel Shrag (!) in the left-hand corner.
A gentleman was purchasing Julio's Day by Gilbert Hernandez at Desert Island so we had to compliment him on his exquisite taste. Lo and behold, Tony (or so he says) showed up at MoCCA the next day ready to buy more quality comics, this time Castle Waiting Vol. 1 by Linda Medley. My mom would be so proud that I'm still somewhat polite!
I ran into a familiar face, cartoonist and animation intern Andrew Greenstone, who was more than willing to hang out and shot the shit---I mean, talk business.
If I ever become a comic book store owner, I hope I'm as cool as Gabe Fowler. The red print was a Desert Island exclusive!
Cartoonist Charles Burns showed up to hang out with friends and look at comics. I never ever tire of that man's company, but he did mention some people are reticent to eat with him because of what he draws in his comics. FOOLS, I say! Also, Evan Dorkin makes Chris Duffy guffaw in the background. Doesn't "Griffith, Dorkin, Duffy and Burns" sound like an amazing lawfirm? Like possibly corrupt but they probably have a pastry chef on staff to appease their clients?
Also signing at MoCCA was Kim Deitch, whose new book The Amazing, Enlightening and Absolutely True Adventures of Katherine Whaley is coming out soon and is haunting, to put it mildly. Deitch brought his original pages which fans poured over. James Romberger and Marguerite Van Cook made their Fantagraphics signing debut for 7 Miles a Second, the moving comic written by David Wojnarowicz. The book has one of those covers that is both oblique and arresting (Jacq adds up some quick math on the right). While I did not stop a child from picking up the book, I did tell a parent or two it had adult material in it. One of my favorite sells of the weekend was selling Prison Pit Book Two to a 14 year old kid whose mom seemed dubious until I brought up the philosophy behind the book. The teen gave me a giant wink as he left, he might not get it still.
Van Cook discussed innovative printing techniques from their travels and non-profit advice while James would sketch in signed copies of the book.
Recently, Alex Dueben talked to Romberger for Comic Book Resources and stopped to meet them in person.
Next up was Leslie and Dash! Local cartoonist Leslie Stein is also in a pretty crazy fun band, Prince Rupert's Drops. If you live in the New York area, check them out. The rest of us will just live via our headphones or listening to their tracks on the recent AudioFemme interview. Leslie signed my old copy of Eye of the Majestic Creatureand we talked about second book that's coming out this fall! I heard some comments from other cartoonists that they feel weird about asking fellow toonies to sign their books but I don't give a humdinkle about that. Make it FANCY for me.
Dash signed the spine of many a Bottomless Belly Button and cover of 3 New Stories for eager fans. Those gorgeous red prints (you can only see a quarter of it) are available from Desert Island if you are looking for something for the Shaw fan who 'has it all.'
Given our close proximity to the stairs to the bathroom, there wasn't much chance for wondering down aisles or buying comics. I really wanted to read L. Nichols' Flocks and she was helpful enough to COME TO ME with her Square for my plastic purchase.
Tucker Stone, of TCJ and Bergen Street Comics, came by to get Gary's signature on a copy of The Comics Journal. Pretty cute, right?
Jacq and me with two of our debut books by Ulli Lust and Gilbert Hernandez! Photo by Dre Grigoropol.
Hung with bossman Gary Groth, Dash, Leslie and Jacq one night.
Charles Forsman was out and about with his Oily Comics micropublishing outfit. Chuck's comic, The End of the Fucking World, will be out this July from Fantagraphics in one single beautiful book. I'm so excited about that. We in no way support NCIS.
Chuck and I go way back, we used to work at the same graphic novel library together in Vermont. A photo from 2009:
Speaking of libraries, the next day Tom Spurgeon and I visited Columbia University's Butler Library and Rare Book room, led around by enthusiastic librarian Karen Green. It was so very cool to see our books with library binding but they've also perfected a myler binding so we don't lose those cool spine designs. Shaw's Bottomless Belly Button and Noah Van Sciver's The Hypo.
Kim, I didn't forget about you, the library has a lot of Jacques Tardi books. Some were checked out, which is even better than finding them at the library.
A grand place I hope to visit again. Thanks to Anelle Miller and her trusty band of volunteers for the enjoyable convention, Gary and Jacq for booth help plus a few of these photos. Lastly, another one of my favorite moments of the week was selling Dungeon Quest Book One to a gentleman on Saturday who came back Sunday to buy the other two after reading the first in one sitting. It was a cherry on top of an awesome convention.
• Chicago, IL: The legendary Gilbert Hernandez will be signing at the infamous Quimby's! Join him at 7:00 PM for the slideshow “From Funnybooks to Graphic Novels” featuring the comics of his childhood, in addition to a Q+A and signing. It's a can't-miss evening, for sure! (more info)
Friday, April 19th
• Seattle, WA: New York cartoonist Lucy Knisley will be serving up fun at the book-signing party for Relish: My Life in the Kitchen at the Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery! Lucy will give a slideshow presenation, and our own Larry Reid will be providing snacks made from recipes in the book! I got to sample a cookie yesterday --- delish!!! (more info)
Don’t miss the opening of our fabulous exhibition "Dash Shaw: Stories" with music by Lexi Lee at Fantagraphics Bookstore this Saturday, April 13 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM. The show includes more than a dozen original drawings by the provocative contemporary cartoonist together with an array of his comix, graphic novels, and small press publications. Banjo player Lexi Lee will perform traditional folk melodies with a modern twist. This event coincides with the festive Georgetown Art Attack, featuring challenging art, music, and more at locations throughout the historic industrial arts corridor.
Mark your calendars for Friday, April 19 at 7:00 PM as Lucy Knisley presents Relish: My Life in the Kitchen with a slide talk, book signing and tasting of delicious recipes from the book.
Dash Shaw will appear in person on Saturday, May 4 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM. He’ll be discussing his work with a screening of his animated shorts, followed by a book signing featuring the debut of his latest graphic novel New School. May 4 also marks Free Comic Book Day. Drop by the store for a free mini comic created by local cartoonists exclusively for Fantagraphics Bookstore.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle’s historic Georgetown arts community, only minutes south of downtown. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
• New York City, NY: Our own James Romberger will be part of the infamous CAROUSEL series hosted by R. Sikoryak! Join James and this all-star cast at Dixon Place [ 161A Chrystie Street (btwn Rivington & Delancey) ] starting at 7:30 PM! (more info)
Provocative American Cartoonist and Animator Dash Shaw at Fantagraphics Bookstore
April 4, 2013 - Seattle, WA. The experimental work of accomplished contemporary cartoonist and animator Dash Shaw will be featured at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery with an exhibition opening Saturday, April 13 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM, followed by a film screening, discussion, and book signing on Saturday, May 4 at 6:00 PM.
Shaw is the creator of several highly regarded comix and graphic novels including Bottomless Belly Button in 2008. Among the critical acclaim, New York Magazine observed "Bottomless Belly Button has become the graphic novel of the year, combining youthful exuberance, sage storytelling, and visual experimentation." The artist followed that success with The Unclothed Man in the 35th Century A.D., a collection of short stories combined with documentation of his dazzling animated shorts for IFC.com.
"Dash Shaw: Stories" at Fantagraphics Bookstore includes 14 original artworks. The opening on April 13 will mark the debut of his recent comic book collection 3 New Stories from Fantagraphics Books. This event coincides with the lively Georgetown Art Attack featuring challenging visual and performing arts throughout the historic neighborhood.
The artist will appear on Saturday, May 4 at 6:00 PM to discuss his work and screen animated short films including Seraph, which premiered at the recent Sundance Film Festival. He'll sign copies of another new Fantagraphics title, New School, an ambitious hardcover graphic novel. May 4 also marks Free Comic Book Day, a national promotion intended to expose new audiences to the joys of comix. Fantagraphics Bookstore will issue an exclusive 16-page minicomic featuring local cartoonists including Max Clotfelter, Eroyn Franklin, Kelly Froh, Aidan Fitzgerald, Ben Horak, David Lasky, Tim Miller, Pat Moriarity, Marc Palm, Darren Schuler, James Stanton, Tom Van Deusen, Max Woodring and more. Free to the first one hundred patrons.
DASH SHAW: STORIES Opening Saturday, April 13, 6:00 to 9:00 PM Exhibition continues through May 8, 2013
Friday, April 19, 7:00 PM Lucy Knisley presents Relish: My Life in the Kitchen Reading, book signing, and tasting
Saturday, May 4, 6:00 - 8:00 PM Dash Shaw screening animated shorts and book signing May 4 is Free Comic Book Day. Drop by for an exclusive minicomic by local cartoonists
• Seattle, WA:Well, read the sign! Jen Vaughn, our most marvelous Marketing/PR/Outreach Fiend, is teaming up with her best friend Nomi Kane for a comics art show at Chocolati Cafe [ 1716 N. 45th Street ]. Join them for the opening reception tonight from 6:00 to 8:00 PM, but even if you can't, you'll still have until Friday, May 3rd to see their exhibit! (more info)
• Brooklyn, NY: It's your last day to check out A Little Knotty, an art show by our own Dave Cooper showing at the Cotton Candy Machine! Take in the original watercolored drawings, inkings, new prints and fun merchandise while you can! (more info)
• New York City, NY: And it's your last day to visit us at MoCCA, at tables B64, B65, C80, C81 -- right in front as you walk through the main entrance! (more info)
Saturday, April 6th // 1:00 - 2:00 PM Guest of Honor Bill Griffith in conversation with Paul Di Filippo [in the Programming Room in the Lower Level]
Where will all these wonderful books and artists be, you might be wondering? Why, tables B64, B65, C80, C81 -- right in front as you walk through the main entrance! (See a bigger version of this map here.) Our PR/Marketing duo of Jacq & Jen will be happy to see you at MoCCA!
The tallest seedlings of Online Commentaries & Diversions:
• Review:ForeWord looks at Dash Shaw's New School. "Like its predecessors, New School is unlike everything else out there.…It’s a startling, yet aptly mundane vision of one man’s future, made all the more believable by Shaw’s expressive, cartoony drawings and generally solid scripting…ultimately, it’s an entertaining and thoughtful graphic novel," writes Bill Baker.
• Review:Paraphilia Magazine covers the two Malcolm McNeill books about his collaborations with William S. Burroughs. "Observed While Falling is an invaluable addition to the library of any Burroughs fan…Having shed light on a previously dark corner of the Burroughs legacy, will hopefully provide vital research material for critical analysis of this gravely neglected work produced during a largely overlooked period in his career," writes Edward S. Robinson. The Lost Art of Ah Pook enchants, "Mc Neill’s images – they’re more than mere illustrations – are rich, complex, and often very strange indeed. Disturbed and disturbing…Mc Neill’s large-form images are remarkable works of art…throughout the quality of Mc Neill’s draftsmanship is of a rare standard."
• Review:Comics Worth Reading recommends Pogo Vol. 1 and Vol. 2 by Walt Kelly. "These upscale volumes collecting the classic Pogo comic strip are archival quality, beautifully reproduced and a pleasure to look upon…Pogo is well-loved for a reason. The strips are beautifully drawn and keenly observent of human nature."
• Interview (audio):Janet Hamlin is interviewed by Anna Maria Tremonti on CBC Radio show, The Current, about working on Sketching Guantanamo and being at the courtroom trials. "What I'm working on that day is determined by whatever activity is in court…"
• Review (audio): Brian Heater is a guest on Bullseye with Jesse Thorn and brings up Peter Bagge's Other Stuff. Heater gabs, "…the iconic underground cartoonist of the 90s, anything depicted a slacker or the grunge era was probably by Bagge. Other Stuff has an overly cartoony look that is nicely juxtaposed by true-to-life stories…"
• Interview (video):Ed Piskor is interviewed by Jared Gardner during his Columbus Museum of Art Residency and speaks on his life through comics and Hip Hop Family Tree. "I grew up in just a hip hop environment, my house was the nucleus between three parks in town you could go to any given one and see some hip hop going on, rudimentary stuff …a few slabs of linoleum and a boombox," answered Piskor.
• Review:ConSequential reviewed The Hypo by Noah Van Sciver recently. "Van Sciver’s depiction is sufficiently sympathetic as to make the reader really root for him as he struggles against rival suitors, Mary’s family and his own anxious temperament. …the fact that it’s endearing, engaging and an all-round good read should make it your kind of thing as well," writes Lucy Boyes.
• Plug:Our Man in Boston profiles David Wojnarowicz and 7 Miles a Second. "Artists James Romberger and Marguerite Van Cook vividly depict David Wojnarowicz’s life and struggles in a much improved edition…" says Robert Birnbaum.
• Review:Grovel reads Beta Testing the Apocalypse by Tom Kaczynski. "Anyone that likes the exploration of ideas, particularly the relationship between humanity, geography, architecture and technology, might get a kick out of reading something different, especially presented in such an unusual form," writes Andy Shaw.
•Review:MetroPulse checks out the EC Library Comics from Wallace Wood and Harvey Kurtzman. "EC had no fear of getting political, long before comics 'grew up.'…Fantagraphics’ EC Comics Library is a must-own for anyone who considers themselves a serious comics fan."Corpse on the Imjin! is "Thoroughly researched and meticulously detailed, Kurtzman’s stories are grim stuff in an era when most Americans believed their country could do no wrong… Grade-school boys reading these dark tales at the time must have had their minds completely blown." Meanwhile, Wally Wood's Came the Dawn! "The tales here are mostly crowd-pleasers with the sort of twist endings that would later become a Twilight Zone trademark."
• Review:Everything is an Afterthought by Kevin Avery is examined in Caught by the River. Andy Childs says, "it becomes apparent that when the history of rock’n'roll is ever written as it should be then he, Nelson, will take his place as a pivotal and hugely influential figure…Kevin Avery does a masterly job in re-constructing Paul Nelson’s reputation and after the enthusiastic critique in the first half of the book the examples of his work in the second half do not disappoint at all."
The creator of the acclaimed graphic novels Bottomless Belly Button and Bodyworld hits the road in support of his new graphic novel, New School, as well as the one-shot comic book, 3 New Stories. At each location, Dash Shaw will be signing copies of his new books before their wide release, often with a gallery full of original artwork and presentations of his animation works (including the Sigur Rós video, "Seraph"). New School is a full-color, classic coming-of-age story that encapsulates the current generation, both trapped and enthralled by pop culture. Shaw dramatizes the story two brothers, one moving to an exotic country where an ambitious new amusement park recreates historical events and the younger one who goes to find his brother after years of little contact. New School is unlike anything in the history of the comics medium: at once funny and deadly serious, easily readable while wildly artistic, personal and political, familiar and completely new.