|Gary Groth: Still a Genius|
|Written by Jen Vaughn | Filed under Gary Groth, awards||22 Oct 2014 5:44 PM|
Eric, Kelly O. and Gary
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On Saturday night, founder and co-publisher Gary Groth received the Genius Award in Literature from Seattle alt-weekly paper, The Stranger. (Photo above by Kelly O. of The Stranger). His competition was fierce but the force of the movement he created when he founded Fantagraphics with Mike Catron and soldiered on with Kim Thompson created a form of comics so prevalent. Paul Constant interviews Groth yet again after the event on comics at the Stranger's Slog: "Pop culture has become so stupefyingly banal that it's caught up with comics. It's kind of terrifying when you think about it," states Groth in reference to the multiple superhero movies, TV shows and comics popping up from here as far as the eye can see. Picture below by Short Run.
Associate Publisher Eric Reynolds was present at the Stranger Awards and commented, "It was a great night for Fantagraphics and for Seattle, and even though Gary's been completely insufferable since Saturday night, going on and on about 'genius this' and 'genius that,' blah blah blah, we're extremely proud of the big lug."
Eric, Kelly O. and Gary
Yes, indeed, we are so proud of Gary and happy to be a part of the everchanging landscape of comics, graphic novels and just damn good storytelling. VIVA COMICS and VIVA GROTH!
Congratulations are in order for Simon Hanselmann because his book MEGAHEX just showed up on the New York Times Best Sellers' list sandwiched inbetween Bryan Lee O'Malley and Jules Feiffer. Grab a copy from your local comic shop, bookstore, our online store or your local library. Trade weed for it, do what you have to do to read it because not ONLY is it a best seller but it is almost sold out!
The description is also too perfect in it's simplicity. "Meet Megg. She's a witch and has a black cat named Mogg. She is also depressed and addicted to drugs." This sweeter-than-the-real-thing book has to be seen to be believed but check out what everyone is saying about it.
"...not only do I find Megg, Mogg, Owl et al bloody funny at times in that first half, as the book wore on I found myself becoming more and more absorbed and fascinated by the darkness, the progression of the comedy into misery and despair, handled really well by Hanselmann." - Richard Bruton, Forbidden Planet
"Every page is beautiful. Every joke is funny. Every character is a complete asshole. The book itself is a nice chunky hardcover with some good heft and a cover design that is made to resemble a DVD box set of a TV show." - Nick Gazin, VICE
Or in the words of the infamous Werewolf Jones:
"U.S.A. Fellowships are awarded to innovative artists of all ages and at all stages of their careers, who are nominated for their commitment to excellence and the enduring potential of their work," said chief executive Carolina Garcia Jayaram.
2014 has been a banner year with the release of Bagge's HATE collection Buddy Buys a Dump and Fantagraphics will soon be rolling out another title from the cartoonist as well. Raise a glass and make a toast to Peter Bagge! You're number one, indeed.
Congratulations are in order for Eleanor Davis because for the THIRD week in a row, her new collection How to Be Happy is on the New York Times Best Sellers' list. This gorgeous book has to be seen to be believed but check out what everyone is saying about it. Grab a copy from your local comic shop, bookstore, our online store or your local library.
"Though Davis' tales can be wildly different in look and narrative, they are united by themes of yearning, of characters searching for the thing that will make their lives better." -Carolina A. Miranda, LA Times
"That's Davis' sensibility. In her roundabout way, she dramatizes not the prospect of happiness, but the promise of it. Her natural territory is found in all the funny and tragic effects of that promise." - Etelka Lehoczky, NPR
"This collection of short stories about people desperately trying to suppress or embrace or just somehow deal with all the difficult emotions careening around in their brain just underscores what those who have seen Davis' work in scattered anthologies already suspected: that she is a tremendous talent, and one of the smartest voices working in comics today." - Chris Mautner, Robot 6
"What's most noticeable when the stories are laid up against one another is her varied visual approach, adapting her style to best fit the material...The success of this collection suggests that short pieces are likely Davis' métier, but what's here is so accomplished that it's natural to hope for a book-length work next time out." -Gordon Flagg, Booklist
The Small Press Expo and Ignatz award nominating committee listed it's list of nominees for this year's awards. For those attending the show on Saturday and Sunday, September 13-14th please make sure to vote on Saturday! Whom should you vote for? Well, your favorite comics of course but here are some *cough cough* suggestions!
Outstanding Graphic Novel:
(Issue #2 is out now!!!)
This year's nominees were picked by casting some runestones, encircling all the books with a blood circle and then chanted at by judges Darryl Ayo, Austin English, Melissa Mendes, Thien Pham and Whit Taylor. Congrats to our other Fanta cartoonists nominated for their other works like Simon Hanselmann and Noah Van Sciver. Both of the guys will be at SPX as well, Simon's debuting Megahex so be sure to stop by the Fantagraphics' booth. Just check for the glitter cannons.
AND Félicitations are due to Jacques Tardi and Jean-Pierre Verney!
The Eisner for Best U.S. Edition of International Material has been awarded to Goddamn This WarCreated 15 years after the completion of his Eisner Award-winning World War I masterwork It Was the War of the Trenches, Tardi's Goddamn This War! is a brand new, wholly individual graphic novel that serves as a companion piece to Trenches, but can be read entirely on its own. Told with gritty insight, wit, and despair-sharing Trenches sustained sense of outrage, pitch-black gallows humor, and impeccably scrupulous historical exactitude-this book is not to be missed.
Associate Publisher Eric Reynolds accepted the awards on behalf of Tardi, Verney and the late great translater and our publisher Kim Thompson. This was one of the last books Kim worked on from start to finish and Reynolds put it best when he said that Kim wanted to show the world the best European comics/bande dessinee possible.
If you don't have this masterpiece yet, aim your binoculars at the Fantagraphics website, where you can pre-order a copy of Tardi's WWI: It Was the War of the Trenches/Goddamn This War Box Set! Shipping this November!
Thank you again to all who came out and congratulated Gilbert and Jaime the rest of the convention. More pictures soon!
This week's pink cotton candy goodness of Online Commentaries and Diversions:
"A mix of evocative, geometric watercolors and fluid pen-and-ink cartoons, How to Be Happy tells stories of sad people, lonely people, strong people, confident people, all trying to find a tiny bit of happiness in life…Davis’ clever and sometimes jaw-droppingly beautiful artwork makes those stories feel real." – Dan Kois, Slate Book Review
"The use of Adam and Eve’s human bodies to communicate to one another, to seek the bliss that’s coming, to lift that weight, is the image Davis wants us to leave with. No moral, no punchline, no muted epiphany — discarded along with all the other distractions, they leave only Edenic bliss behind." – Sean T. Collins, The Comics Journal
"A valuable gem to add to any collection focusing on independent comics and alternative storytelling with its avant-garde narrative voice, classical art style, and brilliantly paced sense of adventure" – Alger C. Newberry III, Library Journal
Review: DKW by Sergio Ponchione
"It's a lovely piece of work, and a nice introduction to these important cartoonists. You will probably like and appreciate this comic more than I did." – Jason Sacks, Comics Bulletin
"Wood (1927-1981) conceived of witzend as a haven where he and his peers could publish personal work and burst the chains of mainstream comics. Though 'personal,' it must be said, often meant drawing generously endowed women flaunting bared breasts." – Dana Jennings, The New York Times
"It felt like a fan publication, but was produced by professionals. It appeared at the dawn of underground comix, but featured standard genre material, including a (great) Wood jungle hero named "Animan." And, most significantly, it had a philosophy that proved problematic, though intriguing." – Jake Austen, Chicago Tribune
Commentary: The Secret History of Marvel Comics by Blake Bell and Dr. Michael J. Vassallo won Favorite Comics-Related Book at the 2014 True Believers Comic Awards, handed out at this year's London Film and Comic Con.
The London Film and Comic Con held its inaugural awards ceremony for the True Believer Awards over the weekend. The Secret History of Marvel Comics by Blake Bell and Dr. Michael J. Vassallo received an award for the Best Comics Related Book Category
Every three months, Seattle's tony cultural journal City Arts awards cash prizes for the best artworks exhibited in local galleries. A panel of three guest jurors nominates finalists each quarter. Winners will be chosen by popular vote this Thursday, July 11 at the Summer Art Walk Awards party. Max Clotfelter's story from the Intruder 10 exhibition in April at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery is up for an award. Show up at Sole Repair by 9:00 PM, have a drink, carefully consider all the nominated work, then vote for Max!
The new Intruder 11, a comix tabloid edited by our own Marc Palm, was released this weekend. Drop by the bookstore and pick up a free copy of this lively anthology.
Lust's past awards include the 2014 LA Times Book Award for Graphic Novels & Comics and the Ignatz Award for Best Graphic Novel - both for Today is the Last Day of the Rest of Your Life.