Mark your calendars for Saturday, November 29 at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery as we celebrate the publication of Sub Pop USA from Brooklyn publisher Bazillion Points. Longtime Seattle residents remember the humble beginnings of the legendary record label as a fanzine, cassette compilation, and broadsheet column by visionary indie music impresario Bruce Pavitt. His early efforts soon brought national attention to bands like Big Black, Sonic Youth, and the Wipers, while laying the foundation for an international pop culture phenomenon that gave us music by Nirvana, Soundgarden, Mudhoney, and more. This collection of the first 8 years of Sub Pop includes art by Charles Burns, Lynda Barry, and Charles Peterson, with forewords from Fantagraphics curator and former Sub Pop contributor Larry Reid and K Records founder and Beat Happening front man Calvin Johnson, who will play music at the book launch event. Make plans now to spend the Thanksgiving holiday weekend at Fantagraphics bookstore. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110.
We have some amazing Halloween treats in store at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery: Vintage copies of mid-60s Creepy and Eerie. These issues are from the estate of the late Gary Arlington, famed EC comics collector and proprietor of the San Francisco Comic Book Company, widely regarded as the country's first comic book shop. (As seen in the photo below by Patrick Rosenkranz.) The magazines feature mid-century masters like Jack Davis, Wally Wood, Frank Frazetta, Alex Toth, Reed Crandall, Steve Ditko, John Severin, and more. Own a monstrous piece of comix history for only $8.95.
Speaking of history, don't miss the Georgetown Haunted History Tour this weekend. This annual event provides a playful look at the eerie history of Seattle's oldest neighborhood. Wildly entertaining.
Make your way to Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery this weekend for two of the liveliest events of the year. On Friday, October 10 from 6:00 to 8:00 PM we host Danny Bland in conversation with noted Northwest novelist Jonathan Evison. They'll discuss Bland's new book of haiku, I Apologize in Advance for the Awful Things I'm Gonna Do featuring calligraphy by Exene Cervenka of X and photographs by Greg Dulli of Afghan Whigs. Look for an engaging dialogue from these unlikely literary luminaries, followed by a reading, book signing, and reception.
This Saturday, October 11 from 6:00 to 9:00 PM, we welcome an incredible crew of gifted cartoonists from Australia, Canada, and the United States. Simon Hanselmann, Michael DeForge, and Patrick Kyle make the final stop of their phenomenally successful North American book tour. They'll be joined by Lane Milburn and Conor Stechschulte for one of the most colorful comix affairs in recent memory. This event coincides with the always-entertaining Georgetown Art Attack.
Fantagraphics Bookstore 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.
San Francisco: The fantasy train, with Hanselmann, DeForge, and Kyle, is making it's way North, and stopping this night at the beloved Mission Comics. To make this tour stop even more exciting, Ed Luce of Wuvable Oaf, is joining them! We hope the good time party vibes of this tour never end, and you can ride the waves by heading to Mission Comics at 5 pm. Kitties in abundunce! (More Details)
Wednesday, October 8
New York: The Society of Illustrators is holding a special lecture series tonight highlighting the work of Drew Friedman and his new oversized, full color spectacular, Heroes of the Comics. A stacked panel team featuring Friedman, Karen Green (Columbia University graphic novels library), Sean Howe (author of Marvel Comics, The Untold Story), and Al Jaffee will be moderated by the comics historian Danny Fingeroth. The lecture runs from 6:30-8:30 pm, and tickets are available through the SOI websites. (More Details)
Thursday, October 9
Portland, OR: One of the best comic shops ever (yeah, I said it) will be hosting some of the best cartoonists ever (yeah, I said it) this Thursday at Portland's Floating World Comics! Celebrating Megahex , Lose #6, and Distance Mover, the boys of summer are hitting fall, which means the tour is winding down. But that doesn't mean the good times are done! In fact, you might have the best time of your life from 5-8 pm this Thursday if you make your way to Floating World Comics! (More Details)
Stanford, CA: Sponsored by Standford Arts, the California univserity is hosting a conversation with Gilbert, Jaime, and Mario Hernandez. They'll be covering a wide range of topics covering the current state of alternative comics, as well as it's history, their influence, and the influence that their latino and punk culture had on them while growing up, and in creating Love and Rockets. It will be hosted by two professors from the University, and it's open to the public! Get schooled from 5:30-7:30 pm! (More Details)
Friday, October 10
Portland, OR: We're keeping them busy this week at Floating World Comics by being lucky enough to have two other rising talents of Lane Milburn (Twelve Gems) and Conor Stechschulte (The Amateurs) join the welcoming PDX community for a signing of their recent successes of sci-fi fantasy and psychological thriller/black comedy. Start your Friday night right from 4-7 pm, with plenty of time to make it to our next Friday outing! (More Details)
Portland, OR: The always changing, always original, monthly comics performance variety show, Grid Lords, has a spectacular line-up of, you guessed it, Hanselmann, DeForge, and Kyle! They will each be combining a reading of their works with musical performances that will be loud, gross and beautiful! Just like everything else they do. Buy a book, get in for free, otherwise it's only 5 bones! Performance begins at 7:30 pm. (More Details)
Portland, OR: The Pacific Northwest College of Arts presents the Super Trash exhibit; a celebration of exploitative art and iamges in cinema, currated by Jacques Boyreau, author of the now available book, Super Trash. The exhibit runs in conjuction with weekly films at the Laurelhurst Theater in Portland. Tonight's film is Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom. I had the trilogy on laser disk and watched them all the time; you can't go wrong with anything Indiana, as long as it's not the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull. (More Details)
Seattle, WA: Gearing up for a packed fall schedule, the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery present Danny Bland, author of the acclaimed In Case We Die, in conversation with fellow author and musician Jonathan Evison. They will be talking celebrating, and talking about, Bland's new book, I Apologise in Advance for the Awful Things I'm Gonna Do, a brilliant collection of haikus. The conversation/signing event runs from 6-8 pm (More Details)
Saturday, October 11
Seattle, WA: It's the day we've all been waiting for. We finally get to call our little chickies home to roost around the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery (don't worry, we'll put straw down). From 6 until closing, we're going to have a big ol' Fanta fam fest when we're joined by the Hanselmann-DeForge-Kyle tour, AND Lane Milburn and Conor Stechschulte. Like all the stops along the way, there will be books signed, hearts broken, drinks drinked, and maybe some tears teared as the full tour makes it's last US stop. This event is on all the hot ticket events in Seattle this week, so make sure you bring all your friends and enemies (for they shall all be your friends by the end of the night) to Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery in Georgetown from 6-Closing. (More Details)
Sunday, October 12
Seattle, WA: Twenty-two years after the release of his Pulitzer Prize-winning graphic novel, Maus, Art Spiegelman presents Wordless!, an innovative hybrid of slides, talk and musical performance created with acclaimed jazz composer Philip Johnston. Johnston's original scores, performed with his sextet, accompany the cartoonist's personal tour of the first legitimate "graphic novels" - silent picture stories made by early 20th century masters like Frans Masereel, Lynd Ward, and Milt Gross - and their influences on him. This unique and multifaceted performance begins at 7:30 pm (More Details)
Vancouver, BC: We've made it, the end. A month (or so) long whirldwind tour of cities, spreading the good word. Canadians have been knocking down the border fence for their chance to witness the magic, and Pulpfiction Books has been granted that wish this Sunday from 4-7 pm. Unfortunately that border is stronger than it looks, and Simon Hanselmann will not be able to attend this event, but we're still letting them have DeForge and Kyle. I guess giving them back to Canada is more accurate. We'll miss them bunches. Don't be strangers! Write often! (More Details)
With Halloween approaching, it's a good time to consider some spooky favorites from Fantagraphics Books.
The formative work of Charles Burns in Big Baby foreshadows the brilliance that would follow. Alluring stories like "Curse of the Molemen," "Blood Club," and "Teen Plague" remain creepy and compelling while exploring themes of adolescent angst. Ghost World by Daniel Clowes is a similarly insightful examination of the otherworldly imaginations of its youthful protagonists. It remains among the greatest graphic novels - and film adaptations - of all time.
Al Columbia's Pim & Francie is at first blush a collection of meticulously rendered drawings, but a closer examination reveals a seductive narrative involving a cute cartoon couple caught in a world of horrific nightmares.
A misanthropic witch wrestles with real world issues in Simon Hanselmann's Megahexand surreal horror unfolds in The Amateurs by Conor Stechschulte as two butchers are afflicted with a mysterious case of amnesia. Meat these amazing artists this Saturday at Fantagraphics Bookstore.
If you don't have tickets to the sold out beer festival, be sure to take in theMacefield Music Festival in Seattle's Ballard neighborhood, where the Tom Price Desert Classic, featuring our own Martin Bland, open for legendary Northwest proto punk band The Sonics on Friday.
Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is pleased to welcome an amazing array of accomplished cartoonists throughout the fall and winter of 2014, culminating with an appearance by one of America's most influential artists.
The action begins on Friday, October 10 with Danny Bland presenting his new book of haiku, I Apologize in Advance for the Awful Things I'm Gonna Do from Seattle's illustrious Sub Pop label. Bland will engage in conversation with equally accomplished Northwest author Jonathan Evison, followed by a reading, book signing and reception. The next night, Saturday, October 11, we host an international crew of incredibly talented cartoonists. Simon Hanselmann from Australia and Canadians Michael DeForge and Patrick Kyle will join American artists Lane Milburn and Conor Stechschulte in presenting their imaginative new works to Seattle audiences for the first time.
On Friday, November 14, in association with Seattle's Short Run comics and art festival, we present "Short Run Marathon II," an exhibition, book signing and reception featuring Tom Neely, MariNaomi, Josh Simmons, Pam Wishbow, John Porcellino, and special guest Ed Piskor.
On Small Business Saturday, November 29, we celebrate the publication of Bruce Pavitt's new book Sub Pop USA, The Subterranean Pop Music Anthology, 1980 - 1988, which chronicles the seminal years of what would soon become an international pop culture phenomenon. The book includes the early issues of Pavitt's Sub Pop fanzine, his columns from The Rocket, and related ephemera, along with essays from Fantagraphics curator Larry Reid and K Records founder Calvin Johnson, who will DJ and perform music at the signing.
Saturday, December 6 marks the festive closing party for the "Short Run Marathon II" exhibition featuring Eroyn Franklin previewing her upcoming graphic novel, Dirtbag.
The bookstore celebrates its 8th anniversary in spectacular fashion on Saturday, December 13, as cultural icon Robert Williams presents The Complete ZAP Comix Anthology with an exhibition and book signing, kicking off a weeklong commemoration of this monumental achievement. We'll screen the documentary Robert Williams: Mr. Bitchin' on Sunday, December 14 at Northwest Film Forum, and on Wednesday, December 17 editor J. Michael Catron will give a slide talk on the history of ZAP. The festivities coclude on Saturday, December 20 with a tribute to S. Clay Wilson featuring Patrick Rosenkranz, Dennis Dread, and Jim Blanchard. We'll see you all soon and often!
As a musician, Pyle was a member of Shadowy Men on a Shadowy Planet, widely recognized for their musical contributions to the Kids in the Hall television show. His photography show opens Wednesday, September 24 and remains on view through Sunday, September 28. Pyle will present his Out-of-Focus Talking Slideshow this Friday at 7:30 at Machine House Brewery, 5840 Airport Way S., across the street from the bookstore. The talk will be followed by a concert by Girl Trouble down the road at Slim's.
As if you needed another reason to visit Georgetown, Fran's Chocolates is opening their new chocolate factory this Thursday, directly across the street from the bookstore. Fran Bigelow's milk chocolate and salt caramels are a favorite of Barack and Michele Obama, who serve the sublime Seattle confections to White House visitors. The facility includes a viewing platform, tasting room, and retail outlet. Georgetown also plays host on Thursday and Friday to an Amazon Prime film adaptation of Philip K. Dick's classic futuristic novel The Man in the High Castle.
Don't miss a wild weekend of amazing music, movie making, beer, art, candy and comix in the country's coolest neighborhood. Parking might be tight, so arrive early and stay late.
I first crossed paths with Charles Burns in the mid-70s, when we both attended a small college in rural Washington State. I later learned that Burns wasn't entirely comfortable in an art school attended by eccentric Charles Manson enthusiasts and Symbionese Liberation Army sympathizers. By contrast, I had finally found my people. Burns soon departed for the greener pastures of The Evergreen State College, where he joined talented young artists Lynda Barry and Matt Groening.
Upon graduating in 1978, I opened the experimental Rosco Louie gallery in the tony Pioneer Square section of Seattle. I was privileged to give both Lynda Barry and Charles Burns their first gallery shows. Burns later served as soundman at Rosco Louie for a performance by San Francisco band Pink Section, which included his then-girlfriend, fashion designer Carol Detwieler. He in turn designed the cover for the 1982 Sub Pop 7 cassette compilation, which included my wife's band, Little Bears From Bangkok. At the same time we were both frequent contributors to Seattle music monthly, The Rocket.
As Burns migrated to the East Coast, we both continued our association with Sub Pop. In 1988, Burns illustrated the stunning cover to the momentous Sub Pop 200 LP. Shortly thereafter, I promoted a Tad, Mudhoney, and Nirvana show at my alternative space, the Center on Contemporary Art, which found Kurt sporting a Burns tee shirt. (As seen in Charles Peterson's photo above.) On a subsequent Seattle visit in 1993, I accompanied Burns to a secret Tad and Nirvana show at a small downtown venue, where he was received as a rock star himself.
Throughout my tenure at Fantagraphics Books, I've continued to encounter Charles Burns, a pleasure that will repeat itself this evening when Burns appears at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery to present his new graphic novel, Sugar Skull. Please join me in welcoming this immensely influential artist back to his hometown.
Philadelphia, PA: The Wild Boyz Tour is wildin out in Philly tonight with a signing at Locust Moon Comics. In addition to Hanselmann, Deforge, and Kyle, they will be joined by Annie Mok, Noel Freibert, and Portland extraordinaire, Farel Dalrymple. This signing begins at 7 pm, but the good times continue the next day (17th) at LAVA Space when everyone magically turns into musicians! (More Details)
Friday, September 19
Seattle, WA: The highly anticipated follow up to the acclaimed books, The Hive and X'ed Out, is finally being released and long time friend-of-Fanta and author, Charles Burns will be back in Seattle at the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery from 6-8 pm to drop his new baby, Sugar Skull. Come party at the best bookstore in the business! (More Details)
Portland, OR: The Pacific Northwest College of Arts presents the Super Trash exhibit, a celebration and exploration of exploitative art and images in cinema. Currated by Jacques Boyreau, author of the upcoming book, Super Trash, the exhibit runs in conjuction with weekly films at the Laurelhurst Theater; tonight's film is the sci-fi adaption of The Omega Man, featuring everyone's favorite gun slinger, Charlton Heston. (More Details)
Brooklyn, NY: No sleep till the next leg of our Fantagraphics tour, which just happens to be in Brooklyn! 8 pm, at the beautiful Bergen Street Comics, the whole gang is getting together to sign books and be merry. The gang for this stretch includes: Eleanor Davis, Jesse Reklaw, Simon Hanselmann as well as Michael Defore, Patrick Kyle, Matthew Thurber, and Alex Degen. That's a lot of people hanging out at one store, at one time. And you can be one of them! (More Details)
Sunday, September 21
Brooklyn, NY: If you're skipping church this morning it better be because you're headed to the Brooklyn Book Fest at the Brooklyn Borough Hall and Plaza, running from 10-6 pm! There is a slew of great vendors attending, but you'll want to hit up the best of all (us, Fantagraphics) because we'll have the best books and signings in the business! Additionally, there are more amazing panels and book debuts than you can shake a stick at. Catch all the details here.
Seattle, WA: Something about fall screams psychological thriller, and few do it better than Chris Wright in his seminal book, Blacklung. He, and that gruelling pirateship thrill ride of a book, will be signing at the Fantagraphics Bookstore and Gallery from 3-5 pm. Stop by to get your hands on a great work that will be perfect to read right before you fall asleep! (More Details)
Monday, September 22
Brooklyn, NY: On her whirl-wind tour with the beautiful, inspiring, heartbreaking (and almost sold-out) graphic novel debut, How to Be Happy, Eleanor Davis will be stopping by indie oasis, Desert Island Comics, to delight and educate audiences with her carefully crafted presentation. Beginning at 7:30 pm, come learn about the relationship between art and the artist, and see what it takes to create a New York Times Bestseller, and stay until 9 to get said Bestseller signed. (More Details)