Photographer Steve Sampson of the Alliance Française also took many, many great photos over the week; we'll be sure to post a link when they're up on the Alliance's website. And we recorded audio at all these events (and the Library is going to be podcasting theirs), so we should be able to bring you MP3s and possibly some multimedia in the near future.
Special thanks to all of the individuals and organizations who worked so hard to put together this fantastic week of events, and of course to the gracious and phenomenally talented David B. for making the journey, tirelessly signing and sketching, and providing such fascinating discussion. It's a great month to be a graphic novel fan in Seattle.
FANTAGRAPHICS BOOKS & MERGE RECORDS PRESENT: TOWN OF MIRRORS: A Robert Pollard Book Release Party and Art Exhibition
at the MERGE RECORDS HQ Friday, August 15, 6PM
DURHAM, N.C. — The Merge Records HQ will be hosting Dayton, Ohio’s Robert Pollard on Aug. 15th for Town of Mirrors, an art exhibition and book release party celebrating the release of Town of Mirrors: The Reassembled Imagery of Robert Pollard, to be published in August by Seattle’s Fantagraphics Books. Town of Mirrors will be the inaugural art show in Merge’s downtown Durham office as part of Durham’s Third Friday, a monthly downtown arts and culture “crawl.”
The forthcoming Town of Mirrors coffee table art book will premiere at the event, with many of the actual collages from the collection hanging in the show alongside several new works. The Reassembled Art of Robert Pollard collects the very best of Pollard’s visual art and lyrics/poetry from his storied career. Featuring over 180 of Pollard’s favorite collages, hand-picked by the artist, as well as over a dozen new collages produced exclusively for this book, Town of Mirrors is the first comprehensive collection of Pollard’s visual art ever released. Original artwork and copies of the book will be available for purchase.
WHO: Robert Pollard WHAT: Town of Mirrors Book Release Party & Art Exhibition WHEN: Friday, August 15th @ 6pm WHERE: Merge Records HQ, 409 E. Chapel Hill St., Durham, NC
Robert Pollard is the Dayton, Ohio singer-songwriter, who was the leader and creative force behind the legendary rock group Guided by Voices, one of the most influential bands of its generation (SPIN magazine recently named Pollard one of “The Top 50 Rock & Roll Front Men of All-Time”). Town of Mirrors is his first book.
In addition to being a revered songwriter and recording artist, Pollard is a gifted and prolific visual artist, working mostly in the medium of collage. His work has been exhibited at Michael Imperioli’s Studio Dante in New York and the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. He has created the covers to almost every Guided By Voices record and countless other Pollard-related releases.
Robert Pollard released four records on Merge, the most recent of which, Coast to Coast Carpet of Love and Standard Gargoyle Decisions, were released in October 2007. Mr. Pollard most recently released Robert Pollard is Off to Business on his own Guided By Voices, Inc. label. He was a fourth grade schoolteacher until 1994, when Guided by Voices first broke into the national consciousness with the release of the album Bee Thousand. With over 900 songs registered to his name with BMI, Pollard is among the most prolific and acclaimed songwriters of his time.
Town of Mirrors is published by Seattle’s Fantagraphics Books, best known as North America’s premiere publisher of graphic novels and comic strips.
Town of Mirrors: The Reassembled Imagery of Robert Pollard By Robert Pollard Introduction by Rick Moody $29.99 Hardcover Music / Art 144 pages, full-color, 10” x 10” ISBN 978-1-56097-924-1 PUBLICATION DATE: Aug. 15, 2008
“The visual art of Robert Pollard is uncanny, moving, strange, and it summons a dark melancholy at the same time; an austere beauty is forged in what is degraded and worthless in the image repertoire of culture itself.” – RICK MOODY, from his introduction
"La Semaine de la Bande Dessinée - A Week Celebrating the French Graphic Novel" got off to a great start last night at the Alliance Française of Seattle, as a standing-room-only crowd gathered to see our own Kim Thompson present his slide lecture "Vingt sur 20: French Comics from Goscinny to Satrapi," an informative and entertaining overview of 20 artists who transformed la bande desinée from a children's medium into "the ninth art." We are working on presenting this slideshow in interactive format, with audio, here on the Fantagrahpics website in the near future, so stay tuned! And don't forget that this week-long event continues tonight with screenings of Tintin et Moi at Northwest Film Forum and David B.'s "My Story, My Stories" exhibit opening and book signing at our bookstore tomorrow!
(NOTE: The exclusive limited-edition silkscreen print shown above will be available ONLY at Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery. Out-of-towners, now is the time to call in favors to your Seattle-area friends.)
I just can't resist pointing out this editorial boo-boo by our pals over at The Stranger, mistakenly placing the graphic for next Wednesday's David B. event with today's item for the Museum of Bad Art on their SLOG blog. I'm trembling in mock outrage!
FREE ADMISSION An exclusive, limited-edition Hayes silkscreen will be available for this event.
The controversial cartoonist Rory Hayes was a self-taught dynamo of the underground comics revolution. Attracting equal parts derision and praise (the latter from the likes of R. Crumb and Bill Griffith), Hayes emerged as comics’ great primitive, drawing horror comics in a genuinely horrifying and hallucinatory manner (some have called him the Fletcher Hanks of the underground). He has influenced a generation of cartoonists, from RAW to Fort Thunder and back again.
On Friday, Aug. 8, on what would have been Hayes’ 59th birthday (Hayes died of a drug overdose in 1983), Desert Island and Fantagraphics Books will celebrate the life and art of Rory Hayes with a special evening celebrating the release of WHERE DEMENTED WENTED, the first-ever collection of Hayes’ legendary comics and art. Editor Dan Nadel (Gary Panter, The Wilco Book) will moderate a discussion of Hayes’ work with three men who knew and worked with Hayes: Kim Deitch (creator of Waldo the Cat), Bill Griffith (creator of Zippy the Pinhead), and Geoffrey Hayes (brother of Rory and author of the recent Benny and Penny from Toon Books).
WHERE DEMENTED WENTED: THE ART AND COMIX OF RORY HAYES is the first retrospective of Hayes’ career ever published, and features the best of his underground comics output alongside paintings, covers, and artifacts rarely seen by human eyes — as well as astounding, previously unprinted comics from his teenage years and movie posters for his numerous homemade films. The Art and Comix of Rory Hayes also serves as a biography and critique with a memoir of growing up with Rory by his brother, the illustrator Geoffrey Hayes, and a career-spanning essay by Edward Pouncey (a.k.a. Savage Pencil). Also included is a rare interview with Hayes himself.
“Rory Hayes was the real thing; a genuine ‘outsider’ artist. His work retains its raw, primitive power to this day, teetering precariously between chaos and control, madness and oddly endearing teddy bears.” – Bill Griffith
“A great American primitive.” – R. Crumb
WHERE DEMENTED WENTED: THE ART AND COMICS OF RORY HAYES Edited by Dan Nadel and Glenn Bray Essays by Geoffrey Hayes and Edwin Pouncey $22.99 Paperback Original 144 pages, black-and-white (with 48 pp. in color), 8” x 10” ISBN 978-1-56097-923-4 • PUBLICATION DATE: AUG. 8, 2008
You Torontoans won't want to miss this event on Aug. 7, featuring an art show with Ray Fenwick, Ho Che Anderson, Chester Brown, and many more. The awards themselves are the following night, August 8th, where you can presumably obtain this unlikeliest of jam posters featuring Brown channeling Harold Gray in the lettering dept. and Lynn Johnston channeling Charlie Brown:
Bill North, Senior Curator at the Marianna Kistler Beach Museum of Art at Kansas State University in Manhattan, Kansas, sends us this link to photos of the exhibit "BLAB! A Retrospective," featuring artwork from the past several volumes of our BLAB! anthology. The exhibit opened last week and runs through November 2, 2008.
To make room in our warehouse for a boatload of new arrivals, Fantagraphics Bookstore & Gallery will host a SUMMER SIDEWALK SALE this Saturday, August 9. You’ll get 50% OFF selected backlist books by your favorite Fantagraphics geniuses. These recent returns and slightly marred books will fill your dog days of August with endless amusement.
This Saturday also features the August installment of the colorful Georgetown Second Saturday Art Attack. This monthly art walk celebrates the creative diversity of Georgetown in an effort to generate public sentiment favoring preservation of this wonderful civic asset. More than 30 Georgetown enterprises participate, featuring a lively array of visual, performing, and applied arts.