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Guy Colwell

Delights: A Story of Hieronymus Bosch

On sale date: August 13, 2024

An obsessive painter, working away for years in near secrecy, now reveals a magnum opus to the world — author and subject, intertwined.

In Guy Colwell's first full graphic novel in 33 years, we see one painter, Colwell himself, consider another, Hieronymus Bosch, and the story behind the latter's most notable work told in sequential panels. The known details of Bosch's life, and the commissioning of his enormous triptych "The Garden Of Earthly Delights," are scant. Colwell takes the facts of Bosch's time and setting and constructs a tale of a man and artist torn equally among piety, creativity, and commerce.

In Colwell's version of Jheronimus van Aken (Bosch's real name), he is an artist paid well by local dukes to paint a vision of the world before the fall, but will the religious leaders of his village see it as celebrating God's creation, or fatally corrupted by sensuality? And what of the increasing numbers of young models needed to depict pre-apple innocence?

This imaginatively conceived historical graphic novel is Colwell's crowning achievement in a cartooning career, begun in the underground comix movement of the 1970s, and marked by risk-taking and political engagement. His drawing, rendering, and storytelling has never been as self-assured as in Delights.


8" × 10.75"