Publisher André Schiffrin died Sunday at the age of 78. As editor-in-chief of Pantheon Books, he published books by Studs Turkel (previously), Günter Grass (previously), Simone de Beauvoir (previously), Jean-Paul Sartre (previously), and many, many other literary giants of the 20th century. The NYT obit doesn't do Schiffrin justice, however; for that, you'll have to read Dennis Johnson's appreciation: No one did so much, in fact, to define the term independent publisher coming into the twenty-first century.
For three days in May of 2012, seventeen cartoonists gathered at the University of Chicago to discuss the philosophy and practice of comics. [more inside]
Windsor McCay was one of the first superstars of the American comics strip, a pioneer in both cartooning and animation, massively prolific. All of his work is in the public domain, but where to start? Over at Robot 6, Chris Mautner provides the lowdown in the first installment of a new series of Comics College, "a monthly feature where we provide an introductory guide to some of the medium’s most important auteurs and offer our best educated suggestions on how to become familiar with their body of work". [more inside]
Blown Covers is a blog by New Yorker art editor Françoise Mouly and her daughter Nadja Spiegelman, who is an editor and comics creator herself. The blog focuses on The New Yorker but today has been Maurice Sendak themed with a short comic by Art Spiegelman and Sendak about a conversation they had, a Sendak New Yorker cover, a short Sendak comic called Cereal Baby Keller and an even shorter Sendak comic.
Released in 1987, The Masters of Comic Book Art is a collection of interviews with notable cartoonists on their creations, creativity, and craft, introduced by Harlan Ellison. [more inside]
"[One] day around 1983, I saw an oversize magazine sticking out of the back of the bin with the word 'RAW' barely visible at the top. Hoping it was pornography, I pulled it out. Much to my disappointment, it wasn't, but I'd also never seen anything like it." - Chris WareAn oral history of the seminal RAW Magazine: Part One, Life Before RAW | Part Two, Life After RAW [more inside]
Ed Piskor became interested in alternative comics at the tender age of nine [according to Wikipedia] after watching Harvey Pekar reading one of his stories in a documentary [most likely this one]. Fast-forward a decade or so, and Ed's getting the call from Pekar himself, asking Ed to draw some comics for him. [more inside]
Art Spiegelman, author of award-winning graphic novel series Maus and the man behind upcoming McSweeney's release Be a Nose!, "was once banned from Robert Crumb’s house, loves chicken fat and hates the term 'graphic novel'". [more inside]
Daniel Clowes, creator of the seminal and controversial comic series Eightball, is currently producing the serial Mister Wonderful for the New York Times Magazine's The Funny Pages. The NYT also presents a slideshow exploring the medium of
graphic novelscomics featuring Art Spiegelman, Joe Sacco, Chester Brown, and previous Funny Pages contributors Seth and Chris Ware. [more inside]
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC) is pumping out a pile of podcasts that have covered the importance of offensive comics to Art Spiegelman, 600 bands over 54 shows, Captain America versus the American government, Amy Sedaris and geekdom, the journey of young immigrants, French philosopher Alain Finkielkraut and Harper's publisher John MacArthur discussing Europe and America perspectives since 9/11, the after life, sex with monkeys, what radio producers do, the french word "corps", Bonnie Fuller's "The Joys of Much Too Much: Go For the Big Life — The Great Career, The Perfect Guy, and Everything Else You've Ever Wanted (Even If You're Afraid You Don't Have What It Takes)", Veteran Washington reporter Helen Thomas and some other bits & bobs [Breakdown inside]