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Category >> Joost Swarte

Daily OCD: 2/28/12
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Shimura TakakoreviewsPeter BaggePat ThomasNick ThorburnMartimangaLove and RocketsLinda MedleyKrazy KatJoost SwarteJaime HernandezinterviewsGeorge HerrimanDaily OCDawards 28 Feb 2012 7:27 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Speedy Ortiz dør

Awards: Jaime Hernandez's Speedy Ortiz dør (the Danish edition of The Death of Speedy from Aben Maler) was named winner of the Ping Prisen for "Best International Comic in Danish"

Wandering Son Vol. 1

List: YALSA's blog The Hub spotlights their previously-announced Great Graphic Novels for Teens Top Ten 2012: "Shimura Takako’s Wandering Son Volume 1 rounds out the Top Ten list for 2012 with a sensitive look at two fifth grade students struggling with gender identity: Shuichi Natori is a boy who wants to be a girl, and Yoshino Takatsuki is a girl who wants to be a boy. This is a complex and sensitive subject, but Takako handles it very gently, allowing the story to unfold in a way that is not only natural but sympathetic. Takako’s artwork is spare and evocative, supporting the story but never getting in the way of its telling. This one is for teens who like contemporary stories about real world problems."

Castle Waiting Vol. 1

List: At LitReactor, Kelly Thompson runs down 10 Graphic Novels for the Literary Minded, with Castle Waiting Vol. 1 by Linda Medley recommended "for fans of fantasy": "Castle Waiting, a brutally funny book with a giant heart, has a new spin on fairy tales with a feminist bent that will draw you in and keep you reading from page one.... Medley’s world is expertly crafted and completely believable, while her black and white artwork is clean and highly detailed with an emphasis on character design and acting."

Listen, Whitey!

Interview: At SF Weekly, J Poet talks to Pat Thomas about Listen, Whitey! The Sights and Sounds of Black Power 1965-1975: "As you can see from the scope of the book, there were hundreds of recordings connected to the Black Power movement. At Fred Hampton's funeral, they blasted The Supremes' 'Someday We'll Be Together' from loudspeakers. Huey Newton loved Bob Dylan's line, 'Something's happening and you don't know what it is, do you Mr. Jones?' The movement was inspired by music and the movement inspired many people, especially jazz musicians, to refocus their sound and energy."

Plug: Check out Ernest Hardy's review of the Listen, Whitey! companion album on Pop & Hiss: The L.A. Times Music Blog, which includes a mention of the book

Plug: Denise Sullivan also digs into the Listen, Whitey! album at Blurt

The Cabbie Vol. 1Is That All There Is?

Roundtable (Audio): On the Inkstuds radio programme guests Joe McCulloch, Matt Seneca and Tucker Stone and host Robin McConnell discuss recent comics including Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte and The Cabbie Vol. 1 by Martí as well as George Herriman's Krazy Kat

Buddy Does Seattle

Review: "Buddy Does Seattle collects the first 15 issues of Hate, in which the protagonist has relocated to the Pacific Northwest and become the consummate slacker.... First published when Seattle was exploding in popularity due to the rise of Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and various grunge bands, Hate offered a decidedly un-romanticized take on a particular time and place. ...Bagge's artwork took the public's perception of '90s youth as angry and volatile and pushed it to hysterical levels. Heavily influenced by late-'60s counterculture cartoonists like Crumb, Bagge's drawings are fluid and grimy-looking, with frequent use of exaggerated facial expressions helping to cultivate an atmosphere of chaos. As a work of cultural commentary it's brash and invigorating, and remains so years later." – Phil Guie, Critical Mob

Mome Vol. 21: Winter 2011 - detail (Nick Thorburn)

Interview: Nick Thorburn's tour with his band Islands brings him to Seattle next week and the Seattle Weekly's Dave Lake asks him about his connections to the city: "...I had a comic strip in the last couple issues of Mome, which is a Fantagraphics anthology, which is a Seattle-based comics publisher. I love Fantagraphics. I got a check from them recently for being in those comics and it would have made the 13-year-old me die with joy, seeing a check with my name on it from Fantagraphics. That's beyond my wildest teenage fantasy."

New Comics Day 2/22/12: Everett, Bagge, Noomin, Swarte, Kolor Klimax, Listen Whitey
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Peter BaggePat ThomasNew Comics DayMatthias WivelJoost SwarteDiane NoominBlake BellBill Everett 21 Feb 2012 8:47 PM

Dear sweet mercy this week's comic shop shipment is slated to include the following truckload of new titles. Read on to see what comics-blog commentators and web-savvy comic shops are saying about them (more to be added as they appear), check out our previews at the links, and contact your local shop to confirm availability.

Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte

Is That All There Is?
by Joost Swarte

144-page full-color 7" x 9.5" hardcover • $35.00
ISBN: 978-1-60699-510-5

"The semi-complete comics works of the remarkable Dutch cartoonist (and designer, and architect, and Tintin aficionado, and the guy who came up with the term 'ligne claire') Joost Swarte. Fantagraphics originally announced this project for 2007 (under the name Modern Swarte), and its scope has gradually expanded since then. There are, in fact, some deliberate omissions--this volume doesn't include his kids' book series 'Katoen en Pinbal,' and mail-order copies from Fantagraphics come with an extra 12-page minicomic of early material called 'Actually, That Wasn't All There Was.'" – Douglas Wolk, ComicsAlliance

"A whole lot of Fantagraphics books are dropping... this week — if you see a book of Joost Swarte: no, it’s not a mirage..." – Joe McCulloch, The Comics Journal

"The... long-anticipated collection of Joost Swarte's comics work... is one of those things you're grateful to see finally come out even if you can't afford to buy it right away." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Kolor Klimax: Nordic Comics Now

Kolor Klimax: Nordic Comics Now
by various artists; edited by Matthias Wivel

250-page full-color 8.5" x 10.75" flexi-bound softcover • $29.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-520-4

"...Fantagraphics must have sat down and designated this Scandinavian Comics Week… Adding a touch of influential Denmark [sic] work for good measure. Besides Kolor Klimax... the publisher has also released the first English language translation from Dutch alternative comics master Joost Swarte, entitled Is That All There Is? ...[T]hat’s one company betting on a lot of 'love' from fans of European alternative work in the same week." – "Insideman's Pull List," Inveterate Media Junkies

"[This] is one of those anthologies with tons of cartoonists you've never heard of but probably wish you had." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Listen, Whitey! The Sights and Sounds of Black Power 1965-1975 by Pat Thomas

Listen, Whitey! The Sights and Sounds of Black Power 1965-1975
by Pat Thomas

204-page full-color 10" x 10" hardcover • $39.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-507-5

"Not comics, by any stretch of the imagination; I'm listing it here because it's a Fantagraphics book and might be showing up in comics shops, and because it looks fantastic. This is Pat Thomas's long, extensively researched photo-and-essay book about where the Black Power movement intersected with the recording industry." – Douglas Wolk, ComicsAlliance

Amazing Mysteries: The Bill Everett Archives Vol. 1

Amazing Mysteries: The Bill Everett Archives Vol. 1
by Bill Everett; edited by Blake Bell

240-page full-color 7.25" x 10" hardcover • 39.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-488-7

"I'm a huge fiend for Bill Everett, one of the romantic figures of 20th Century comic book making for the fact that when his comics hit on a certain popular notion they contributed to the general development of that form as much as anyone's comics ever did, but when they didn't quite conform to the most popular efforts they super stuck out." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Buddy Does Seattle: The Complete Buddy Bradley Stories from

Buddy Does Seattle: The Complete Buddy Bradley Stories from "Hate" Comics Vol. 1 (1990-'94) — New 4th Printing
by Peter Bagge

340-page black & white 6" x 9" softcover • $19.99
ISBN: 978-1-56097-623-3

"I think we all forget that the Buddy Bradley material is one of the great comics efforts, period." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

Glitz-2-Go by Diane Noomin

Glitz-2-Go
by Diane Noomin

180-page black & white/color 8" x 10" softcover • $19.99
ISBN: 978-1-60699-481-8

"It's wonderful that Diane Noomin has a new collection out. I'm reading it right now as the book I keep in the back seat of the car as I wait for people to leave buildings where I'm picking them up.... I hope this one doesn't get lost in the flood of new material out. We desperately need to come to grips with more of the underground comix work, if only because so much of it was deeply compelling. I liked the support material in here, too, particularly Noomin's walking us through her career." – Tom Spurgeon, The Comics Reporter

"My splurge for the week would likely be one of the several books out from Fantagraphics. First up is Amazing Mysteries, a collection of early work by Bill Everett (reviewed here). Then there’s Glitz 2 Go, a collection of comics by underground-era cartoonist Diane Noomin, whom I simply don’t know enough about. The obvious choice though is the wittily titled Is That All There Is?, a kitchen-sink collection of the mighty Joost Swarte’s comic stories from the 1970s onward. You can never have enough Swarte." – Chris Mautner, Robot 6

"CONFLICT OF INTEREST RESERVOIR: There’s a pretty enormous amount of Fantagraphics stuff out this week, with nothing more anticipated I suspect than Is That All There Is?, a 144-page collection of almost all of Joost Swarte’s work in alternative comics, including eye-catching bits from RAW, Heavy Metal and elsewhere; $35.00. Then you can keep up your international airs with Kolor Klimax: Nordic Comics Now, a 250-page anthology of Scandinavian works edited by the Journal’s Matthias Wivel; $29.99. Editor Blake Bell returns with Amazing Mysteries: The Bill Everett Archives Vol. 1, a 240-page collection of Golden Age superhero comics from the titular artist; $39.99. Diane Noomin (of the Twisted Sisters anthology, the second volume of which I attribute to changing my entire perception of how the comics form could work at a crucial age) gets a 180-page anthology of her various works with Glitz-2-Go; $19.99. And finally, in case comics are just too much for ya, Listen, Whitey! The Sights and Sounds of Black Power 1965-1975 finds music producer and writer Pat Thomas tracking the recorded output of various black power groups of the designated time span, in glorious prose; $39.99." – Joe McCulloch, The Comics Journal

Daily OCD: 2/17/12
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Shimura TakakoreviewsmangaJoost SwarteDaily OCDBill Griffith 17 Feb 2012 6:03 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Is That All There Is?

Review: "[Swarte's] comic pages are playful symphonies, composed to the smallest detail. Though his style is static in nature, he is a master of panel layouts, organising the contents of each panel in such a way that movement erupts by the way he’s leading the eye across the page.... For those wanting to familiarize themselves with the comics of Joost Swarte, Is That All There Is? is a nice baptism into his specific world vision full of retro architecture and absurd happenings." – Bart Croonenborghs, Broken Frontier

Wandering Son Vol. 2

Review: "It is not very often that a comic (from any country) deals with gender identity in such a sensitive and accessible way, which is why I am so incredibly happy that Wandering Son is being translated into English.... I really do love Wandering Son. The story has a quietness to it that hides the intensity of its emotion. While gender identity is an important part of Wandering Son, it is not the only aspect of the story or or the characters. Shuichi, Takatsuki, their friends, families, classmates, and teachers all come across as real people. The connections between characters transcend gender, too. Friendships are developed and strengthened by common interests and standing up for each other.... I can't recommend Wandering Son enough and am really looking forward to the next volume." – Ash Brown, Experiments in Manga

Bill Griffith: Lost and Found - Comics 1969-2003

Metaplug: The New Yorker plugs Paul Di Filippo's review of Bill Griffith: Lost and Found - Comics 1969-2003

Daily OCD: 2/16/12
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoreviewsJoost SwarteGreg SadowskiDaily OCD21 16 Feb 2012 7:10 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Is That All There Is?

Review: "There really is no cartoonist in the world quite like the great Joost Swarte. His stories are surreal, silly, sexy and sometimes spectacular. They're gorgeously drawn in a classic European style that lights up every page of this wonderful and gorgeous book [Is That All There Is?]. Don't worry about these stories being too obscure or strange -- this book fun and silly and awesome. ★★★★★" – Jason Sacks, Comics Bulletin

21: The Story of Roberto Clemente

Review: "Wilfred Santiago’s graphic novel captures the talent of Clemente the baseball player while also showcasing and illuminating the many simple and human qualities of the man that forged him into an honest and authentic hero. 21′s complex yet accessible narrative and profound artwork make it a swift and affecting experience, one that I plan to enjoy on multiple future readings. If you’re a fan of baseball and things that are really well done, you could do a whole lot worse than to check out the novel for yourself." – Kyle Davis, Call to the Pen

Action! Mystery! Thrills!

Review: "Editor/designer Greg Sadowski returns to his tireless exploration of the comic book with this magnificent collection of 176 full color covers [Action! Mystery! Thrills!], dating from the Golden Age. As in his previous volumes..., Sadowski supplies copious end notes and annotations. Though this time, the information additionally reads as an entertaining history of early comics.... Sadowski once again delivers an essential book for anyone with an interest in comics history." – Rick Klaw, The SF Site: Nexus Graphica

Don't Forget: Exclusive Swarte Comics When You Buy From Us!
Written by Kim Thompson | Filed under new releasesJoost SwarteFBI MINIs 8 Feb 2012 2:36 PM

http://www.fantagraphics.com/images/flog/kim/2012/bookcover_minijs.jpg

Swarte collectors will want to buy their copy of Is That All There Is? directly from us, as every mail-order copy ordered from Fantagraphics will be accompanied by "Actually, That Wasn't All There Was," the FBI•MINI giveaway featuring a half-dozen hilarious Jurassic-era Swarte comics stories that have not been in print for over 40 years, and have never been seen in English! (Even I was totally unfamiliar with them.) I'd hate to pick favorites, but this may be the most collectible FBI•MINI of them all, showcasing Swarte's earliest, pre-Hergé-pastiche, more underground-y style. A revelation!

And if you've already pre-ordered your copy of Is That All There Is? from another source, remember that any FBI•MINI can also be obtained by simply placing an order for $50 or more with Fantagraphics (for any of our books) and picking it as your freebie.

Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte - Now in Stock
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under new releasesJoost Swarte 7 Feb 2012 11:49 PM

Just arrived in our warehouse and ready to ship to our mail-order customers:

Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte

Is That All There Is?
by Joost Swarte

144-page full-color 7" x 9.5" hardcover • $35.00
ISBN: 978-1-60699-510-5

See Previews / Order Now

 Order this book and receive this FBI•MINI comic shown at left as a FREE bonus! Click here for details. Limit one per customer while supplies last.


By appropriating and subverting Tintin creator Hergé’s classic “clear line” style, Joost Swarte revitalized European alternative comics in the 1970s with a series of satirical, musically elegant, supremely beautifully drawn short stories — often featuring his innocent, magnificently-quiffed Jopo de Pojo, or his orotund scientist character, Anton Makassar.

Under Swarte’s own exacting supervision, Is That All There Is? will collect virtually all of his alternative comics work from 1972 to date, including the RAW magazine stories that brought him fame among American comics aficionados in the 1980s. Especially great pains will be taken to match Swarte’s superb coloring, which includes stories executed in watercolor, comics printed in retro duotones, fiendishly clever use of Zip-a-Tone screens, and much more. (There’s even a story about how to color comics art using those screens, with Makassar as the teacher.)

Other noteworthy stories include Swarte’s take on an episode from Hergé’s early days, a Fats Domino story, a tribute to the legendary “Upside-Downs” strip, and a story titled simply “Modern Art.”

“I’ve loved Joost Swarte’s perfect cartoons, drawings and designs for decades and it’s nothing short of ridiculous that a comprehensive edition of this brilliant artist’s work has never been available in America until now. Swarte is considered a national treasure in his native Holland, and if you open this book, you’ll understand why.” — Chris Ware

Daily OCD: 2/3/12
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under The Comics JournalStan SakaireviewsPaul KarasikLaura ParkJoost SwarteJasonJack JacksoninterviewsDaily OCD 4 Feb 2012 12:06 AM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions (none yesterday):

Is That All There Is?

Review: "If Spielberg shed the skin of Hergé’s style in an effort to get to the heart of his stories, the compelling work of Dutch cartoonist Joost Swarte performs the procedure in reverse.... Swarte, equally inspired by the underground comix that emerged from the American counterculture of the 1960s and ’70s, adapted the clear line and reanimated it with subversive content unlike the perennially chipper Boy Scoutism of Hergé’s Tintin. ...Is That All There Is?, collecting the bulk of his comics oeuvre to date (excluding a body of children’s comics), provides an overdue opportunity to linger over and consider his narrative work.... Like a Rube Goldberg machine designed according to De Stijl aesthetics—with a rhythm and blues soundtrack—Swarte’s comics communicate a historically freighted, European sense of the absurd, poised toward a globalizing, postmodern present." – Bill Kartalopoulos, The Brooklyn Rail

Review: "The real joy of Swarte’s work... is the architectural elegance of his illustrations and his fine ability to colour them using everything from watercolour to retro duo-tones. Looking at Swarte’s mostly 20th century work [in Is That All There Is?] now, what’s also — and tangentially — interesting is the retro-futuristic look of it: the settings are near-future, but everything’s styled circa the 1940s, much in the same way Ridley Scott imagined the future in Bladerunner. For sheer design swagger you need to check Swarte out." – Miles Fielder, The List

Athos in America

Review: "These stories [in Athos in America] are a little less open-and-shut than Jason usually makes. His comics are always good, but I usually don't think about them too much after reading them. This one's more of a think stimulator than previous books.... It's a beautiful book. This is definitely Jason's best book yet. Good job, Jason." – Nick Gazin, VICE

keep on trudgin'

Interview: Chicago Publishes has an interview with Mome contributor Laura Park: "I’m really happy with the stories I did for MOME. I love short stories. Novels are the format now — it’s a selling format. You can have graphic novels in a bookstore, because non-comics people might buy them. Whenever you can get a comic from the comic shop into a bookstore, it’ll make more money. But short stories are kind of magical to me. My favorite writer is Flannery O’Connor. She has novels, but her short stories are the ones that linger and itch away through you."

 Jack Jackson's American History: Los Tejanos & Lost Cause [

Bibliography: Love & Maggie presents a comprehensive annotated guide to Jack Jackson-related materials in back issues of The Comics Journal

Stan Sakai Angoulême sketch

Scene: Paul Karasik has a delightful report from Angoulême; Stan Sakai has one too, with Usagi sketches

Daily OCD: 1/30/12
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under Wilfred SantiagoreviewsPeanutsMickey MouseJoost SwarteJim WoodringinterviewsFredrik StrombergFloyd GottfredsonDisneyDaily OCDCharles M SchulzCarl BarksBill Griffith21 30 Jan 2012 8:52 PM

Today's Online Commentary & Diversions:

Is That All There Is?

Review: "In addition to undermining the colonialist attitudes of Hergé and classic Disney cartoons with his R. Crumb-ish verve, Swarte also presents a clutch of perfectly packaged riffs on cartoon art. Having a Chris Ware introduction makes sense, given Swarte’s excruciating eye for architectural detail, and could help introduce Swarte to a larger audience, but the book [Is That All There Is?] may not need it — the art doesn’t speak for itself, it shouts." – Publishers Weekly

Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes

Review (Audio): On the latest episode of Boing Boing's "Gweek" podcast, co-host Ruben Bolling discusses Walt Disney's Donald Duck: Lost in the Andes by Carl Barks: "(Spoiler: it's superb.)"

21: The Story of Roberto ClementeBlack Images in the Comics

Plugs: Library Journal's Martha Cornog lists "25 Graphic Novels for African American History Month" including 21: The Story of Roberto Clemente by Wilfred Santiago...

"The Puerto Rican slugger overcame family poverty, racial prejudice, and the language barrier to be voted the National League’s Most Valuable Player for 1966. Puerto Rican-born Santiago (In My Darkest Hour) superbly captures the kinetic excitement of baseball as well as Clemente’s skill and warm humanity on and off the diamond.... Highly recommended; buy several."

...and Black Images in the Comics by Fredrik Strömberg:

"First published by Fantagraphics in 2003 and nominated for an Eisner Award, this history of racial depictions in comics has been updated in both its content and its source list. Over 100 entries, each featuring a representative illustration and an instructive short essay, cover an international range of comics, from Moon Mullins through Tintin, Will Eisner, R. Crumb, Peanuts, Boondocks, and beyond."

Walt Disney's Mickey Mouse Vol. 1-2

Plug: "The Fantagraphics reprint of the Mickey Mouse comic strip made by Floyd Gottfredson was already a gem in its first edition in two volumes separately, but with this new edition, with two volumes in a box and a lower price, it becomes essential." – CaraB (translated from Spanish)

Bill Griffith: Lost and Found - Comics 1969-2003

Interview (Video/Audio): Get comfy for an hour-long chat with Bill Griffith about Lost and Found: Comics 1969-2003 on Bob Andelman's Mr. Media podcast, presented in video and streaming audio formats: "I’m sure somebody will be offended, which will be nice — to still offend somebody after all these years. People who only know Zippy comics through King Features will probably be surprised to see that Zippy was more adult-oriented."

Jim Woodring

Feature: Juxtapoz spotlights the artwork of Angoulême honoree Jim Woodring

The Complete Peanuts 1969-1970 (Vol. 10) [NORTH AMERICA ONLY]

Commentary: In an impressive feat of scannery, Mike Lynch compiles all of the "silent penultimate panels" from Peanuts strips from 1969

Video profile: Meet Joost Swarte
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videoJoost Swarteinterviews 11 Jan 2012 12:28 PM

Now that you've seen the previews of our collection of Joost Swarte's comics Is That All There Is?, perhaps you would like to know more about the artist and his other work. Here's a nice brief English-language video profile commissioned by DutchDFA that spotlights not only Swarte's comics but some of his work in illustration, design and architecture, with a glimpse inside his drool-inducing studio space.

Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte - Previews, Pre-Order
Written by Mike Baehr | Filed under videopreviewsnew releasesJoost Swarte 10 Jan 2012 1:06 AM

Is That All There Is? by Joost Swarte

Is That All There Is?
by Joost Swarte

144-page full-color 7" x 9.5" hardcover • $35.00
ISBN: 978-1-60699-510-5

Ships in: February 2012 (subject to change) — Pre-Order Now

Order this book and receive this FBI•MINI comic shown at left as a FREE bonus! Click here for details. Limit one per customer while supplies last.


By appropriating and subverting Tintin creator Hergé’s classic “clear line” style, Joost Swarte revitalized European alternative comics in the 1970s with a series of satirical, musically elegant, supremely beautifully drawn short stories — often featuring his innocent, magnificently-quiffed Jopo de Pojo, or his orotund scientist character, Anton Makassar.

Under Swarte’s own exacting supervision, Is That All There Is? will collect virtually all of his alternative comics work from 1972 to date, including the RAW magazine stories that brought him fame among American comics aficionados in the 1980s. Especially great pains will be taken to match Swarte’s superb coloring, which includes stories executed in watercolor, comics printed in retro duotones, fiendishly clever use of Zip-a-Tone screens, and much more. (There’s even a story about how to color comics art using those screens, with Makassar as the teacher.)

Other noteworthy stories include Swarte’s take on an episode from Hergé’s early days, a Fats Domino story, a tribute to the legendary “Upside-Downs” strip, and a story titled simply “Modern Art.”

“I’ve loved Joost Swarte’s perfect cartoons, drawings and designs for decades and it’s nothing short of ridiculous that a comprehensive edition of this brilliant artist’s work has never been available in America until now. Swarte is considered a national treasure in his native Holland, and if you open this book, you’ll understand why.” — Chris Ware

Download and read an 18-page PDF excerpt (4.3 MB).

Video & Photo Slideshow Preview (view in new window):




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