Tuesday, August 25, 2015

A History of Mini Comix

Many moons ago, when I was more actively drawing cartoons, I drew a number of mini comics (some of the very first of the genre). 

A selection of my chapbook sized comics from 1972 to 1981
For more on the history of mini comix see posts on this blog for October 20, 2013 and October 23, 2013 in the Blog Archives to the right.

My cover of Space Junk published by Everyman Studios
History is catching up with us, in this case mini-history.
Fantagraphics has been publishing mini-comix collections of such as Michael Dower’s Treasury of Mini Comix and New Wave! the Underground Mini Comix of the 1980’s.

Now writer, artist and comics historian Bruce Chrislip has written the definitive history on the subject (in maxi form -a 464 page trade paperback) titled Minicomix Revolution 1969-1989.

In the overall history of comic art this admittedly is a micro-niche. However, I’m very pleased to have been a part of it and to see its history so well documented.

For those of you interested in such things, you can purchase a copy directly from Bruce.
A regular edition is $30.00 postpaid.

Bruce can be reached at:

Bruce Chrislip
2113 Endovalley Dr.
Cincinnati, OH 45244 

Saturday, August 15, 2015

More from the 17th Annual Box Show

Our grandson mugging next to our entry in the Box Show
In the last couple of weeks we've posted a few features on the current Box Show at Gallery Route One in Pt. Reyes Station.  The show is in its 17th year and--aside from being a lot of fun--serves as a great fundraiser for the gallery.

Each artist is given an unadorned pine box. You can pretty much do anything to it as long as elements of the original the box remains in the piece (people have taken them apart, burned them, shredded them and so on; this year printmaker Xander Weaver-Scull burned the box and used the ashes to make ink. Then made a print using the ink).

There are over 100 particpating artists. Here  are a few highlights from the show.

I like this one--"The Fall"--by Kathy Callaway and Sean Sullivan

"Portrait of Alan Ginsberg" by Simon Jeremiah

"Book Box" by Eric Jackson

"The Gatherers" by Linda Petri

"Sea Goddess" by Jan Etre

Denise Bondy

"Caution" by Ellen Gray

"Bee Box" by Cindy Davis and Todd Pickering

"Capture the Imagination" by Leslie Scott

"Thirst" by Joan Thornton

" S.S. Resolute" by Inez Storer

"Rainbow Judgement" by William van Thillo

Lesley Gray and Norma McFadden

"Sparky's Little Setback" by Marre Wong

"A Moveable Feast" by Barry Chukerman

                  This is just a small portion of Peter Perez's remarkable
      "You Must Come Up and See the Rest of the Etchings Sometime"

Paul LaPorte


                                                   Loretta Farley

Mesa Broek

Donna McKee

"Alchemical Tableau"by Zea Morvitz and Tim Graveson

A great one by Todd Fellows

                               The Box Show continues until September 13th.

Check out the Box Show "Trailers":

Thursday, August 6, 2015

Keiji Nakazawa's Barefoot Gen

Today marks the 70th anniversary of the dropping of the atomic bomb on Hiroshima.

One of the most powerful accounts of that terrible event was told by a cartoonist--Keiji Nakazawa.

Nakazawa was a child living with his family in Hiroshima when the atomic bomb was dropped on that city on August 6, 1945.   Nakazawa's father, sister and brother died that day and his infant sister died weeks later from radiation sickness. Unbelievably, Keiji, who was less than a mile away from ground zero, was protected from the blast by a collapsed wall.

Nakagawa survived to become a cartoonist creating a series of semi-autobiographical manga Hadashi no Gen (Barefoot Gen) as well as Ore wa Mita (I Saw It).

Published by Project Gen
In 1978, Project Gen was formed to publish Nakazawa’s manga in English language trade paperback editions.

Published by Educomics
Around the same time, my old friend, cartoonist and visionary publisher, Leonard Rifas, published the first English language comic book version of Nakazawa’s work in the  United States ---Gen of Hiroshima and I Saw It.

I’ve always regarded Barefoot Gen as such an important work it never occurred to me that it might be out of print. But apparentlythat's currently the case.

Ron Turner of Last Gasp Publishing is planning to remedy that with a new hardcover edition. To join Last Gasp’s Kickstarter campaign go to:   https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1784498350/barefoot-gen-for-schools-and-libraries