Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Self-P, part eight

Self-P, part seven

Black hole: artistperson uses two mirrors to see herself. Artistperson blocks herself (the black -- well, black to us -- back of the hand mirror) and triangulates herself (panel three -- but also in panel five when the hand mirror is put down and artistperson's friend Marci is the third -- but, wait a second, artistBurns is also there...). Artistperson has to spread herself thin to get at herself: "It was too much. Everything was suddenly too much."

Monday, May 24, 2010

Self-P, part six

Charles Burns. Black Hole. Charles Burns.

Friday, May 21, 2010


CF's Powr Mastrs Vol 1 reads like nothing else. High praise.

Thursday, May 20, 2010


More on the year 1988 soon. (Image from Arlen Schumer.)

Monday, May 17, 2010

Self-P, part five

Plump ironies: John Stanley's Judy Junior bosses herself into a self-portrait after she fails to compose a self-portrait of Jimmy Fuzzi.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Relevant Page

Can't believe I'm stooping to this intro. In a tweet from April 3, I wrote, "Unbelievable: reading a comic that doesn't have sex, tits, drugs, swears, ennui, violence, or superheroes. No, wait, there's a fuck."

I was kidding about the disruptive fuck; that's just a punchline fuck.

My archival tweet refers to my elated discovery of Dan Zettwoch's "Spirit Duplicator" comics in The Best American Comics 2009.
Simply by virtue of his choice of subject matter -- fictional church bulletins across decades -- Zettwoch ensures that the precious and predictable litany of North American comic virtues goes untouched.

Thank God.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Relevant Panels

The Best American Comics 2009: Tim Hensley, Gary Panter, Kevin Huizenga, Kaz.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Self-P, part four

Case in point: Dan Clowes' self-portrait is the second-to-last component of his new book Wilson. Meta-Clowes writes, "He finds it uncomfortable to hand-letter information about himself in the third person but feels the need to fill this space with a block of text for design purposes." Exactly: need and design.

Douglas Wolk notes, "Paul Gravett observed that 'Wilson' is a partial anagram of Daniel Clowes (like 'Enid Coleslaw' from Ghost World)--maybe this is some kind of nastily refracted self-portrait, and in fact the final images we see of Wilson are very close to Clowes' actual self-portrait a few pages later" (via Techland). The image above teases loose continuity with the comic vignettes (he's like his character) and subsequently teases loose correspondence with real life Clowes (his character's like him).

This publishing necessity, however, makes me wary of both because the bio becomes a new focal point for sabotaging sincerity. Even though it's jokey, it does exactly what it needs to do: dates, location, family, works, this work. The midsection of humor attests to the fact that we the audience love Clowes' sensibility, that we will follow Clowes anywhere, and more importantly that peevish Wilson, however Clowesian he may be, is but a temporary manifestation of our beloved clown Clowes. Long live the string-puller, no matter how short-lived the pulled was.