With over 4000 attendees the new Comic Arts Brooklyn presented by Desert Island was a success. It was fantastic to meet anew those of you who’s work I admire i.e., Cathy G. Johnson, Kevin Czap, Dailen Williams, and Olivia Horvath. I like to thank especially those of you who’ve been supportive or offered support in my artistic endeavours.. namely Simon Hanselmann , Pete Toms, Alabaster, KJ Martinet and Edie Fake. I hope you all had a good show.
Emotional Distance #3: Service by Zach Mason
Babytown by Mimi Chrzanowski
Conditions On The Ground 1-7 by Kevin Hooyman
RAV 9 by Mickey Zacchilli
Deep Park & Coracle 3 by David C. Mahler
Black Mass by Patrick Kyle
Crit Club Comix volume 1
Rot #5 by Katrina Silander Clark
Butler Comic by Mickey Zacchilli, Michael Deforge and Patrick Kyle
Gut Feelings by Leah Wishnia
Top of the Mountin’ by Sarah Crowe
Ponte Las Pilas #2 by Aleks Sennwald
Crawdads #3 & Tuna Massage by Karissa Sakumoto
The Far Woods by Sarah Burwash
Hypermaze by Brian Blomerth
Flying Fox: an anthology of Australian comics with works by Marc Pearson, Katie Parrish, Leonie Brialey, Ben Sea, Ruskidd, Evie Cahir, Jr. Blue, Michael Hawkins, Merv Heers, David C. Mahler and Sam Wallman
here are some descriptions of what I’ve gone through so far..
Emotional Distance 3: Service by Zach Mason is a fourteen page two colour mini book riso-printed by Issue Press. The third installment of this series succeeds as a vade mecum for personal introspection through its imagery and poetry. The pacing of this short work has a very interesting rhythm mixing a very solid beat with a touch of awkwardness.
Another mini book, Lil’ Buddies Magazine edited by Edie Fake is a collection of photos of anthropomorphic renderings from various places. Your thoughts are initially guided by a wonderfully written forward by the editor. "Tapped directly into a human desire to relate through recognition, Lil’ Buddies are rooted in the yearning of the spirit to see ourselves as part of everything and, vice versa, to see everything as part of us." After reading the rest of the introduction and going through the pages, this book immediately conjured memories of Jane Goodall’s and Dian Fossey’s research with the Hominidae family of primates and the schism in the scientific community in regards to endowing animals with human emotions. Do we lose objectivity or are we missing something fundamental in the study of nature? This book provokes reevaluation of our relationship with the environment and in this way holds its most valuable weight.
Crawdads 3: Ketchup in Wacky Ketchup Land by Karissa Sakumoto is a twenty eight page half-letter sized one colour comic ‘zine. Karissa has an exemplary storytelling style. It’s simple and elegant. It’s akin to watching a well written and directed animation. The transitions are particularly well done. They move with the speed of a finger snap and seamlessly transport the reader around four distinct “sub-worlds” within a fifth overarching universe that houses them. The story centers around a character with both dog and human traits and you experience the gamut of emotions and mental transformations common in those that partake in a party lifestyle. It’s an amazingly well rounded piece of cartooning when you add-in the wonderful drawing style.
Conditions On The Ground by Kevin Hooyman is over one hundred pages of sixty five individual comic strips spread across seven B&W half-letter sized volumes. Much of Kevin’s work takes everyday situations and transforms them into introspective illustrated tracts that manage to provoke opposing emotions simultaneously. Writing in this way is difficult to achieve and as a result quite rare. The drawings range from simple to complex, faces of characters capture emotions in both cartoonish and subtle ways. The way backgrounds and foliage are rendered are a highlight here, it’s a delight to wander the waving, copious lines. They serve well to cradle the vast universe that’s been created within these pages.
Coracle #3 by David C. Mahler is a twenty eight paged B&W half-letter sized book with a colour cover. A collection of short comics that feel refreshing as they shine with a truly unique voice. Some are rather uplifting as they express a clear excitement about existence. The first strip is a striking visual poem accompanied by simple elegant prose that spirals together as an ode to the interconnectedness of all life from the narrator’s perspective. The second strip is wonderfully drawn. It reads like a dream diary throughout though simultaneously a conscious comparison of individual’s ways of seeing and how those differences can separate people. The content of these strips are a joy to read and puzzle over as they’re open to much interpretation. These are the type you can read over again and again and still come up with new thoughts. Flash upon the inward eye that is the bliss of Coracle #3.
Babytown #3 by Mimi Chrzanowski is a B&W twenty eight page 8.5x11size comic with a colour cover. The story revolves around a birthday celebration of one of the fantastically imaginative cast of characters. It succeeds as a portrait of the give-and-take nature of friendship. There isn’t much drama and in that way it’s very refreshing after going through some gut-wrenching stories previously. Mimi has a knack for creating captivating characters and their design is a highlight here. It will be interesting to see any shifts in these relationships as the story progresses in future installments.
Crit Club Comix Volume One is twenty six page half-letter sized publication by members of the SUNY Purchase Critique Club featuring the work of Steven Glavey, P.J. Kopp, Michael Howard, Andrew Russell, and Julian Sheep with inside cover art by “X”. It’s hard to tell who made what part of the book though it flows together fairly well. It’s a collection of mostly sequential art with a few full page illustrations. It’s glue bound, something I haven’t seen too often in this type of DIY production, adding a nice touch. The individual sequences fall into various places on the spectrum of abstraction/concreteness. All of the work provides a good amount of fuel for thought and it’s a solid collaboration. I’m looking forward to future volumes from Crit Club.