Tuesday, December 26, 2006

DC-based comics interviewer Chris Shields & cIndy Center

Chris Shields runs cIndy Center, a podcast that frequently deals with comics. DC-based Chris interviews cartoonists (as well as other types of artists) and releases the interviews as podcasts on a regular basis. You can subscribe to Chris's podcast through itunes or sign up at his website.

Recent interviews of cartoonists include Mark Millar, Fred Hembeck (a real favorite of mine), and Zak Smith (the artist who illustrated Pynchon's Gravity's Rainbow sort of as a graphic novel).

2nd in a series of profiles on local comics bloggers.

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Matt Diffee at Politics & Prose covered in Post

Although it happened a couple of weeks ago, Peter Carlson's coverage of Matt Diffee's booksigning for the Rejection Collection of New Yorker cartoons is in the paper today.

Also, the Travel section has an article on the Saul Steinberg exhibit in NYC and says the show will be in DC at American Art in the spring. And the Style Invitational Contest a few weeks ago was about comic strip writing and the winners are announced.

Finally, the Year in Editorial Cartoons in the last page of the Outlook section; presumably Toles' Year will be next week.

Jan 7 - Animation - Norman McLaren Restored

My buddy Rick Banning just called me with this film information from the National Gallery of Art.

Norman McLaren Restored
Premiere of new 35 mm prints
January 7 at 4:30 p.m.

Brilliant Scottish-born Canadian animator Norman McLaren (1914–1987) perfected many of the techniques that became the standard of animation art. Often imitated, McLaren's work during the 1930s and 1940s for the National Film Board of Canada and Britain's GPO film unit was legendary. Eleven of his classic short films — including Begone Dull Care (1949), Neighbours (1952), A Chairy Tale (1957), Pas de deux (1968), Synchromy (1971), Blinkity Blank (1955), and Hen Hop (1942) — have now been restored by the National Film Board of Canada to their original 35 mm format. Viewed in these spectacular new prints, McLaren's films demonstrate cinema's close affinity with painting and music — a concept that was one of this artist's main preoccupations. (total running time 85 mins.)

Thursday, December 21, 2006

Tuesday, December 19, 2006

Articles in today's papers

The Post carried Joseph Barbera's obituary of course. Not an AP article, but a competent, if not deep, obit written by Martin Weil. The hagiographic obits are somewhat amusing since it's not been long since Hanna-Barbera were accused, with some justification, of killing animation.

Suprisingly, both the Examiner and the Express slipped in articles. The Express had an AP article on Jerry Seinfeld's animated 'Bee Movie'. The Examiner had Brian Truitt's recommendations for comics as Christmas gifts. The Last Christmas (Image), Identity Crisis, Revelations, Young Avengers 1, and Pride of Baghdad if you're wondering. This is a very depressing list actually.

Monday, December 18, 2006

SWANN FELLOW TO LECTURE ON WINSOR MCCAY AT LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, JAN. 16

SWANN FELLOW TO LECTURE ON WINSOR MCCAY AT LIBRARY OF CONGRESS, JAN. 16

Swann Foundation Fellow Katherine Roeder will discuss the work of distinguished cartoonist Winsor McCay and its relationship to the mass culture of the early 20th century in a lecture next month at the Library of Congress.

Roeder will present her talk, titled “Wide Awake in Slumberland: Fantasy and Mass Culture in the Work of Winsor McCay,” at noon on Tuesday, Jan. 16, in Dining Room A on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, D.C.

The illustrated presentation is based on Roeder’s research project, which has been supported by her fellowship from the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon. The Library of Congress administers the foundation. The lecture, sponsored by the foundation and the Library’s Prints and Photographs Division, is free and open to the public; no reservations are required.

A pioneering master in newspaper comics and early animation, and a notable editorial cartoonist, McCay (1867-1934) first gained national notice for his detailed and fantastical comic strips that included “Dream of the Rarebit Fiend” (1904-1911), “Little Sammy Sneeze” (1904-1906) and, arguably the best known and beloved of all, “Little Nemo in Slumberland” (1905-1914). “Little Nemo” was a weekly comic strip in which the title character repeatedly embarked on epic journeys to exciting, strange and sometimes frightening places, only to awaken in the last frame safe at home in his bed. McCay’s comic strips, in the Sunday editions of American newspapers, made an important contribution to the proliferation of fantastic imagery at the dawn of the 20th century.

McCay’s work centered on fantasy and longing, qualities that were key features of the burgeoning commercial environment. In her lecture, Roeder will make formal comparisons between McCay’s comic strips and the design of department stores, printed advertisements and amusement parks. McCay drew from a broad spectrum of visual sources to create a richly textured world that engaged viewers and excited their imaginations. His comic strips produced a dream world shaped by the visual language of modern urban experience.

Roeder is a doctoral candidate in art history at the University of Delaware, where her area of focus is American art and culture. Her dissertation is titled, “Cultivating Dreamfulness: Fantasy, Longing and Commodity Culture in the Work of Winsor McCay.” In addition to being one of three Swann Fellows for 2006-2007, Roeder is a Smithsonian pre-doctoral fellow at the National Portrait Gallery for 2006-2007. Last year, she was a research fellow in American art at the Corcoran Gallery of Art. Roeder received a bachelor’s degree from Trinity College and a master’s from the University of Maryland.

Roeder’s lecture is part of the Swann Foundation’s continuing activities to support the study, interpretation, preservation and appreciation of original works of humorous and satiric art by graphic artists from around the world. The Swann Foundation’s advisory board is composed of scholars, collectors, cartoonists and Library of Congress staff members.

The foundation customarily awards one fellowship annually, with a stipend of $15,000, to assist scholarly research and writing projects in the field of caricature and cartoon. Applications for the academic year 2007-2008 will be due on Feb. 15, 2007. More information about the fellowship is available through the Swann Foundation’s Web site: www.loc.gov/rr/print/swann/swannhome.html or by e-mailing swann@loc.gov.

# # #
PR06-232
12/18/06
ISSN: 0731-3527

Sunday, December 17, 2006

Post article on Palestinian political cartoonist



The Post ran a fairly atypical article today on Palistinian cartoonist Khalil Abu Arafeh that's well worth reading. See Subversive Palestinian Cartoons Reflect New Political Introspection by Scott Wilson, Washington Post Foreign Service, Sunday, December 17, 2006; Page A27

Cartoon America opening video on web

The Library of Congress has put some video of the November opening speeches. The video is poor, but just listen to the sound which is fine.

TITLE: Library of Congress Opens "Cartoon America" Exhibition
SPEAKER: Harry Katz, Jules Feiffer, Brian Walker, Ann Telnaes, Kevin Kallaugher, Art Wood
EVENT DATE: 11/01/2006
RUNNING TIME: 46 minutes


DESCRIPTION:

A host of well-known cartoonists and publishers were on hand at the Library of Congress to celebrate the opening of "Cartoon America: Highlights from the Art Wood Collection of Cartoon and Caricature," a exhibition featuring 100 masterworks of the nation's most renown cartoonists. It was also the occasion for the launching of a companion book titled "Cartoon America: Comic Art in the Library of Congress" which is published by Harry N. Abrams, in association with the Library of Congress. The book is edited by Harry Katz, former head curator of the Library's Prints and Photographs Division. Images of many cartoon drawings in the exhibition are included among the 275 full-color illustrations in the book, which also surveys the Library's other holdings of related art.

Speaker Biography: Harry Katz is former head curator of the Library's Prints and Photographs Division.

Speaker Biography: Jules Feiffer is an American syndicated comic-strip cartoonist and author. In 1986 he won the Pulitzer Prize for his editorial cartooning in The Village Voice, and in 2004 was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame. Feiffer's cartoons ran for 42 years in the The Village Voice and have been collected into 19 books. They have also appeared in The Los Angeles Times, The New Yorker, Esquire, Playboy and The Nation. He was commissioned in 1997 by The New York Times to create its first op-ed page comic strip which ran monthly until 2000. Feiffer has most recently written several award-winning children's books including "The Man in the Ceiling" and "A Barrel of Laughs, A Vale of Tears." Feiffer is an adjunct professor at Southampton College. Previously he taught at the Yale School of Drama and Northwestern University. He has been a senior fellow at the Columbia University National Arts Journalism Program. Feiffer is a member of the Dramatists Guild Council and has been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Letters. He received the National Cartoonist Society Milton Caniff Lifetime Achievement Award in 2004 and the Creativity Foundation's 2006 Laureate.

Speaker Biography: Brian Walker is a professional cartoonist, a cartoon scholar and a founder and former director of the Museum of Cartoon Art (now the International Museum of Cartoon Art), where he worked from 1974 to 1992. In addition, he has contributed gags for the comic strips "Beetle Bailey" and "Hi and Lois" since 1984. Walker has written and edited more than a dozen books on cartoon art, as well as numerous exhibition catalogs and magazine articles. He has curated 65 cartoon exhibitions, including the retrospectives "The Sunday Funnies: 100 Years of Comics in American Life" at the Barnum Museum in Bridgeport, Conn. and "100 Years of American Comics" at the Belgian Center for Comic Art in Brussels.

Speaker Biography: Born in Sweden, Ann Telnaes' editorial cartoons are syndicated with Cartoonists and Writers Syndicate/ New York Times Syndicate. Her work has appeared in such prestigious publications as The Washington Post, The Boston Globe, Le Monde, Courrier International, The Chicago Tribune, Los Angeles Times, Newsday, The New York Times, Austin American Statesman,The American Prospect and Ms magazine. Telnaes also contributes an exclusive weekly cartoon to Women's eNews, an online news service. Telnaes' work was shown in a solo exhibition at the Great Hall in the Thomas Jefferson Building of the Library of Congress in 2004. Her first book, "Humor's Edge," was published by Pomegranate Press and the Library of Congress in 2004. Her work has also been exhibited in Paris and Jerusalem.

Speaker Biography: Kevin Kallaugher is the editorial cartoonist for The Baltimore Sun and The Economist magazine of London. In March 1978, The Economist recruited him to become its first resident cartoonist in its 145-year history. Kevin spent the next ten years working in London as a cartoonist for such publications as The Observer, The Sunday Telegraph, Today and The Mail on Sunday. Kallaugher returned to the U.S. in 1988 to join The Sun as its editorial cartoonist. His work for The Sun and The Economist has appeared in more than 100 papers worldwide. His cartoons are distributed worldwide by Cartoonist and Writer's Syndicate. He has won many awards for his work, including the 1999 Thomas Nast Award presented by the Overseas Press Club of America and the 1996 Grafica Internazionale Award at the International Festival of Satire in Pisa, Italy. He has published one collection of his Economist drawings titled "Drawn from the Economist" in 1988 and three collections of his Baltimore Sun cartoons: "KALtoons" (1992), "KAL Draws a Crowd" (1997) and "KAL Draws the Line (2000)." Kallaugher is past president of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists and has had his work on display in the Tate Gallery in London and The Library of Congress. He has had one man exhibitions in London, New York, Washington and Baltimore.

Speaker Biography: A resident of Washington, D.C., Art Wood collected the works of his leading American and European colleagues throughout his long career. His collection also includes works that he purchased, particularly in the areas of animation art and illustrators' drawings. The purchased portion of the collection under the agreement with the Library includes only those items that he bought to expand the collection. During his professional life, Wood worked diligently to establish a museum or gallery to preserve and showcase his collection. He achieved his goal in 1995 with the opening of the National Gallery of Caricature and Cartoon Art in downtown Washington, D.C., but the gallery closed in 1997 due to a lack of sustained funding. Undeterred, Wood turned to the Library of Congress, where he had worked early in his career, to preserve and present his collection.

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Dec 16 - Comics signing at Big Planet

Today's Express has a story by Darona Williams saying that Shannon O'Leary will be signing her comic anthology, Pet Noir at the Georgetown Big Planet (3145 Dumbarton St, NW) at 3:30 - the phone is 202-342-1961. The anthology is subtitled "An Illustrated Anthology of Strange but True Pet Crime Stories" which sounds depressing to me. Still, the article makes it look interesting, and I'll try to stop by.

Brian Ralph in Baltimore City Paper

It's under an hour away, but it seems farther than that. Anyway, here's the story, which Tom Spurgeon's Comics Reporter picked up first:

"Q+A | People - Brian Ralph" By Lee Gardner, Baltimore City Paper (December 13, 2006).

Derf!!!

Totally-cool cartoonist Derf did the cover and illustrations for the December 15th Washington City Paper. It's not online yet though. His "The City" strip regularly runs in the City Paper.

Last March, Derf (aka John Backderf) won the RFK Award for political cartoons, in a contest judged by local cartoonists and aficionados. In his March 21st Post chat, "Chatalogical Humor"
Gene Weingarten had the following to report:

"On Sunday, I was one of four judges for the Robert F. Kennedy Awards, in the category of political cartoons. (Two of the others were Richard Thompson and Nick Galifianakis, the ex-hubby who illustrates Hax's column.)

It was an odd experience. The RFK award goes to those who most effectively highlight the plight of the powerless and disenfranchised. We were looking at the best work of some of the best editorial cartoonists of our generation, and yet so much of their portfolios for 2005 didn't really fit the contest's criteria. Why?

Because editorial cartoonists tend to focus their criticism, and outrage, on the political and emotional issues that define their times. Alas, the plight of the underclasses and the disenfranchised tended to take a back seat to the grotesque mismanagement of our supposed war on terror. Not the cartoonists' fault, but a sign of the utter failure of our national policies, and the corruption of our national will."


Dave Astor picked up the story in May and noted the award ceremony was to be on May 25th. I wasn't invited, but presume it happened.

New Ann Telnaes book


One of my moles in the Library of Congress (hi, Martha!) emailed me to tell me about this book this morning, but Dave Astor already beat me to the story. Telnaes, trained as an animator, has a collection of Dick Cheney cartoons out through a print-on-demand publisher, but my mole tells me it's also available in DC bookstores Trover and Politics & Prose. I'll be definitely picking this one up. I wonder if this is the start of a trend for cartoonists?

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

Neal Gabler on Walt Disney



I attended Neal Gabler's talk about his biography of Walt Disney tonight at Politics and Prose. Gabler's an animated speaker, and blew his alloted time, but nobody except the staff cared because he was entertaining. He also is so animated that he didn't stay at the microphone, so there won't be a recording sold of this one. I took a few notes though.

Gabler began by stating that he was "not one of the people who worship at the alter of Walt Disney," but that he was interested in people who "shape the American conciousness particularly in popular culture. I call them architects of American conciousness."

"No one is neutral about Walt Disney. There is no middle ground with Walt Disney... The two great visual imaginations of the 20th century -- I think of Picasso and Walt Disney."

The book took seven years of work with open access to the Disney archives under archivist Dave Smith. "It was seven years of work because The Walt Disney Company finally did open the archives for me. There was no quid pro quo and I couldn't have accepted one." Apparently Howard Green, a PR vice president at Disney thought enough time had passed to have perspective...

The archives revealed that "Walt Disney, for better or worse was a packrat.. So when you go into the archives you will find things no one else would have retained." Gabler attributed this to Disney's sense of his own importance and destiny. Gabler said that he does research in chronological order to try to follow the story and maintain the suspense. While we all know Disney was a success, Disney didn't know he would be and reading his letters in order gives a better feel for his life.

Disney was a control-freak at his studio which he owned. He was the only one who issued memos on blue paper, so everyone knew what came from him. "Walt Disney's word is holy writ at the Walt Disney Co. Walt Disney was not a collaborative artist. He was a fellow who had a vision in his head and asked people to realize the visions."

Gabler related a few stories from the book, which has gotten gotten excellent reviews in the Washington Post and New York Timeswhich did two reviews a month apart. The Times also recommended the book as an Editor's Choice. And Reuters reviewed it and labelled it a 'literary triumph.'

At the end, in response to a question, in his opinion, the studio never completely recovered after the bitter 1941 strike, but "I think Pinnochio is the apex of animation. That opinion's not in the book so you've gotten something new tonight."

And for some reason Amazon France has an English 10 Second Interview: A Few Words with Neal Gabler.

HERBLOCK EXHIBITION EXTENDED THROUGH FEB. 3

The Library's public affairs office sent this out today.

HERBLOCK DISPLAY IN “AMERICAN TREASURES” EXTENDED THROUGH FEB. 3

“American Treasures” Exhibition To Close Feb. 5-21

“Enduring Outrage: Editorial Cartoons by Herblock,” currently on display in the “American Treasures of the Library of Congress” exhibition, will be extended through Feb. 3. The exhibition may be viewed free of charge from 10 a.m. to 5:00 p.m., Monday through Saturday, in the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building at 10 First Street S.E., Washington, D.C.

“American Treasures of the Library of Congress” will close on Feb. 5 and reopen Feb. 22 with a featured display titled “A Century of Creativity: The MacDowell Colony 1907–2007” to commemorate the centennial of the artists’ colony, located in Peterborough, N.H.

Also on display in “American Treasures” beginning Feb. 22 will be a selection of items drawn from the Library’s collections that feature William Shakespeare. The display will be part of a city-wide celebration of Shakespeare in Washington, to be held January through June 2007.

The “American Treasures” exhibition opened on May 1, 1997, as the centerpiece of a yearlong celebration marking the official reopening of the Library’s Thomas Jefferson Building during its 100th anniversary. Made possible by a grant from the Xerox Foundation, the exhibition features the rarest and most significant items from the Library’s collections relating to America’s past. For preservation considerations, some of the more fragile documents are displayed on a rotating basis.

The “American Treasures exhibition can be viewed online at www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures. “Enduring Outrage” can be viewed at www.loc.gov/exhibits/treasures/herblock-home.html.

For more information about the Shakespeare celebration, visit www.shakespeareinwashington.org.

Cartoon America in Publishers Weekly newsletter

Peter Sanderson described the exhibit for the newsletter PW Comics Week. On reading his article, I can't tell if he actually has seen the exhibit, but it's an acceptible overview of the show. I would quibble with phrase "The uniquely American art of the comic strip and the cartoon are on display..." since some of the pieces are by Europeans including Cruickshank and Kley, but the Library's curators set reviewers up for that with the title of the show.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Comics arriving December 13th

List courtesy of Big Planet Comics.

New comics arriving this WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 13TH

DC COMICS
52 WEEK #32
100 BULLETS #79
BATMAN #660
BATMAN STRIKES #28
DMZ #14
EX MACHINA #25
FIRESTORM #32
GEN 13 #3
GREEN ARROW #69
GREEN LANTERN CORPS #7
JLA CLASSIFIED #30
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #4
MAD MAGAZINE #473
MARTIAN MANHUNTER #5
NEW TEEN TITANS: TERRA INCOGNITO TP
OMAC #6
ROBIN #157
SANDMAN MYSTERY THEATRE: SLEEP OF REASON #1
SPIRIT #1
STORMWATCH PHD #2
SUPERMAN: GREATEST STORIES VOL. 2 TP
TALES OF THE UNEXPECTED #3
TRIALS OF SHAZAM #4

MARVEL COMICS
AMAZING SPIDER-GIRL #3
AVENGERS: NEXT #3
BLADE #4
BULLET POINTS #2
ESSENTIAL OFF. HANDBOOK UPDATE ‘89 VOL. 1 TP
EXILES ANNUAL #1
FANTASTIC FOUR: THE END #3
GHOST RIDER #6
HEROES REBORN: AVENGERS TP
MAGICIAN APPRENTICE #4
MARVEL ADVENTURES: FF #19
NEW X-MEN #33
ULTIMATE X-MEN #77
WOLVERINE #49
WOLVERINE: ORIGINS & ENDINGS TP
WONDER MAN #1
X-23: TARGET X #1
X-FACTOR #14
X-MEN: PHOENIX WARSONG #4

INDYVILLE
ALTER EGO #63
BATTLE POPE #12
BETTY #161
CURSES HC
DAMNED #3
ELEPHANTMEN #5
ESCAPISTS #6
GIRLS #20
HUNTER KILLER #10
JUGHEAD AND FRIENDS DIGEST #16
LITTLE LULU VOL. 13 TP
LONE RACER GN
OUTER ORBIT #1
PALS ‘N’ GALS DOUBLE DIGEST #108
TRANSFORMERS: ANIMATED MOVIE ADAPTATION #3

PLANET PICKS
52 WEEK #32
BULLET POINTS #2

CURSES HC
ESCAPISTS #6
EX MACHINA #25
FANTASTIC FOUR: THE END #3
JUSTICE LEAGUE OF AMERICA #4
SANDMAN MYSTERY THEATRE: SLEEP OF REASON #1
SPIRIT #1
SUPERMAN: GREATEST STORIES VOL. 2 TP
WONDER MAN #1
X-FACTOR #14

Jan 16 - Winsor McCay lecture at Library of Congress

Martha Kennedy reports Swann Foundation Fellow Katherine Roeder will present a lecture titled "Wide Awake in Slumberland: Fantasy and Mass Culture in the work of Winsor McCay," at noon on Tuesday January 16, 2007, in the Library of Congress's Dining Room A on the sixth floor of the James Madison Building, 101 Independence Ave. S.E., Washington, DC. Roeder's illustrated presentation is based on a research project, which has been supported by her fellowship from the Swann Foundation for Caricature and Cartoon, which is administered by the Library. The lecture, sponsored by the foundation and the Library's Prints and Photographs Division, is free and open to the public; no reservations are required.

Cartoon America exhibit extended for another month

Whoo-hoo, a press release from the Library reads:

LIBRARY OF CONGRESS EXHIBITION “CARTOON AMERICA” EXTENDED THROUGH FEBRUARY 24

WHAT: “Cartoon America: Highlights from the Art Wood Collection of Cartoon and Caricature,” a Library of Congress exhibition, will be extended.

WHEN: Instead of closing on January 27, the exhibition will remain open through Saturday, Feb. 24, 2006. The free exhibition is open to the public from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m., Monday-Saturday.

WHERE: Thomas Jefferson Building, 10 First St. S.E., Washington, D.C.


“Cartoon America: Highlights from the Art Wood Collection” opened on Thursday, Nov. 2, 2006. It features 100 masterworks of celebrated artists, including political cartoonists Thomas Nast, Rube Goldberg, Bill Mauldin and Patrick Oliphant; comic strip creators Winsor McCay, George Herriman, Chic Young, Milt Caniff, Charles Schulz and Lynn Johnston; humorous gag cartoonists Peter Arno and William Steig; caricaturists Al Hirschfeld and David Levine; animation drawings and cels from Walt Disney Productions and Hanna-Barbera; and illustrations by Edwin A. Abbey, John Held and Michael Hague.

Monday, December 11, 2006

Early underground publisher dies in Baltimore

Tom Spurgeon also picked this one up at the Comics Reporter.

Donald Dohler [ Age 60 ] Journalist and filmmaker was passionately committed to community newspapers and his low-budget films.
By Frederick N. Rasmussen
Baltimore Sun reporter
Originally published December 9, 2006
http://www.baltimoresun.com/news/obituaries/bal-md.ob.dohler09dec09,0,2458425.story?coll=bal-news-obituaries

Rasmussen writes, ""As a teenager, he began his publishing career with a humor fanzine called Wild, which featured the early work of noted underground cartoonists Jay Lynch and Art Spiegelman," said his son, Greg Dohler of Baltimore."

Martin Nodell, Green Lantern creator, dies


Tom Spurgeon's got the story and all the links, but I'll put up this picture of Mr. Nodell, myself and my daughter Claire taken at last year's Baltimore Comic-Con. It was a real pleasure to meet him and thank him for creating such a great character.

Bits from Monday, December 11th's papers

The Washington Examiner published a long, but fairly uninteresting interview with Disney's CEO Robert Iger. For some reason, they don't put most of their articles up as text, so to read it you have to open a PDF version for December 11th and select page 24.

On the positive side, I found that they've given Nate Beeler, their excellent editorial cartoonist, blog space starting in November.

In the Express, comics guru Scott Rosenberg recommends Popeye, Dick Tracy and Moomin reprint volumes, all available now. The Express's website is even worse than the Examiner's, so no links. Complain to the Post which owns it.

Sunday, December 10, 2006

Dec 16 - Comics signing at Big Planet?

Dirk Deppey's put a comics signing by Abby Denson and Shannon O'Leary at the Big Planet Georgetown store at 3:30. I'm checking on this, but I figured I'd put it out there in case anyone needs to make plans. Anybody familiar with their work?

Dec 13 - Booksigning - Neal Gabler on Walt Disney REPOST

Gabler's signing his new biography on Disney at 7 pm on Wednesday, December 13th at Politics and Prose. It's been getting very good reviews including one posted here last weekend from Dirda in the Post. I'm going to try to attend.

Berryman bookplate article


Years ago, I dashed off a quick article about Washington editorial cartoonist Clifford Berryman's design of bookplates. I sent it to Hogan's Alley along with copies of the plates and somehow it fell between the cracks with both of us forgetting about it. Now editor Tom Heintjes has resurrected it on the web. I think there's some cute stuff here. There's also an article on Berryman that I helped with a bit in the Fall 2002 issue of the International Journal of Comic Art.

Speaking of editorial cartoons...

... I can't believe that this one, by Mike Luckovich and published in December 9th's Post, comparing Mary Cheney's pregnancy to the Virgin Mary's, won't bring in letters. For those not following the story, lesbian Mary Cheney, the Vice-President's daughter, has campaigned for the current administration, but lives in anti-gay-marriage Constitutional-amendment-passing Virginia, and has chosen to bear a child. I'll leave further commentary to the comments section.

"Peanuts" music profile in Post




'Charlie Brown,' an Evergreen Treat By Matt Schudel, Washington Post Staff Writer, Sunday, December 10, 2006; Page N01 is a nice look at Vince Guaraldi's involvement from the beginning with the Schulz "Peanuts" animated cartoons.

The Post Magazine section also has a brief bit about the profusion of celebrity voices in animation. Right over Richard Thompson's "Cul de Sac" strip in fact. ;^)

Saturday, December 09, 2006

Black Christian Heroes To the Rescue in Comics


The Post's run a story on comics on the religion page in the back of their Metro section:

Black Christian Heroes To the Rescue in Comics;

Stories Meld Religious, African American Themes
By Timothy Wilson
Washington Post Staff Writer
Saturday, December 9, 2006; B09

Milestone Media member Michael Davis has founded the Guardian Line in cooperation with a religious group. Longtime comics readers may recall Milestone Media as the DC-distibuted black superhero line from the 1990s. The stories were generally good, but there was an explosion of superhero lines at the time, and they didn't really catch on. "Static," cleaned up a bit, did become a Saturday morning TV series, "Static Shock."

Cartoon America reviewed in Dec 9 Examiner

The free Washington Examiner ran a review of Cartoon America today.

Also in the paper was the USA Weekend section which had an a article on the voice of Wilbur in the new animated Charlotte's Web. The Spider-Man comic book continues reprinting the original #8 with another new cover, this time by Olivier and Morales again.

Friday, December 08, 2006

Geppi's Museum reviewed in Post

Today's Post Weekend section has a favorable review of Geppi's Entertainment Museum in Baltimore. At $10 per person, the museum's a bit pricier than I expected. Another bit or two about the Museum appeared in their Scoop newsletter today.


There's also a review of Marvel's Ultimate Alliance videogame on the preceeding page.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

That 'truly disgusting' cartoon in the Post

A few days ago, I mentioned this letter from the December 2 Post - Drawing Disgust: The Post has achieved a new low. The Nov. 25 Drawing Board cartoon on the op-ed page concerning contraception and a presidential "withdrawal plan" was truly disgusting. Enough said. -- Nancy Copeland, Manassas.

Thanks to my neighbor Bill's archive, we can identify it as a cartoon by Dan Wasserman of the Boston Globe - specifically this one.

Truly disgusting? Moreso than this one by Luckovich that was next to it?

New comics expected Dec 6, courtesy of Big Planet Comics

Big Planet highlighted that Captain Marvel (the Fawcett one) Showcase and it's impossible to disagree. I spent many happy hours taking the 1970s hardcover rerpint Shazam From the '30s to the '70s out of the library and poring through the unknown (to me at least) characters.

And I'm not sure where my pictures went - a lot of links seem to be broken - but when it's working right, I'll post comics-related pictures from the National Postal Museum's exhibit.

New comics arriving this WEDNESDAY, DECEMBER 6TH

DC COMICS
52 WEEK #31
ALL-NEW ATOM #6
AMERICAN SPLENDOR #4
BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL #1
DESOLATION JONES #8
DETECTIVE COMICS #826
EXTERMINATORS #12
FRIDAY THE 13TH #1
JONAH HEX #14
JUSTICE LEAGUE UNLIMITED #28
JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #1
LOONEY TUNES #145
MANHUNTER #26
MIDNIGHTER #2
MYSTERY IN SPACE #4
NEXT #6
NIGHTWING #127
NINJA SCROLL #3
OTHER SIDE #3
OUTSIDERS #43
SACHS AND VIOLENS TP
SHOWCASE PRESENTS SHAZAM VOL. 1 TP
SPIRIT ARCHIVES VOL. 20 HC
SUPERGIRL #12
SUPERMAN CONFIDENTIAL #2
TRANQUILITY #1
WRAITHBORNE TP

MARVEL COMICS
AGENTS OF ATLAS #5
AVENGERS: EARTH’S MIGHTIEST HEROES II #3
BEYOND #6
DOCTOR STRANGE: OATH #3
ESSENTIAL DEFENDERS VOL. 2 TP
INCREDIBLE HULK #101
IRREDEEMABLE ANT-MAN #3
MARVEL ADVENTURES SPIDER-MAN #22
MARVEL COMICS PRESENTS WOLVERINE VOL. 4 TP
MARVEL HOLIDAY SPECIAL
NEW EXCALIBUR #14
NEW X-MEN: CHILDHOOD’S END VOL 3 TP
NEWUNIVERSAL #1
RED PROPHET #4
RUNAWAYS VOL. 2 HC
SPIDER-MAN AND POWER PACK #2
SPIDER-MAN: REIGN #1
STAN LEE MEETS SILVER SURFER
STAR BRAND CLASSIC VOL. 1 TP
ULTIMATE VISION #1
UNCANNY X-MEN #481
WHAT IF CLASSIC VOL. 3 TP
WHITE TIGER #2

INDYVILLE
ANGEL: AULD LANG SYNE #2
ARCHIE #571
ARCHIE DOUBLE DIGEST #175
CROSS BRONX #4
GI JOE: AMERICA’S ELITE #18
HERO SQUARED #4
INVINCIBLE #37
JEREMIAH HARM #5
MELTDOWN #1
MODERN MASTERS VOL. 9: MIKE WIERINGO SC
NEW TALES OF OLD PALOMAR #1
NIGHTLY NEWS #2
OFFICIAL HANDBOOK O/T INVINCIBLE UNIVERSE #1
SPECTRUM VOL. 13
STAR WARS: REBELLION #5
STRANGERS IN PARADISE #86
TOYFARE #114
WALKING DEAD #33
WITCHBLADE #102

PLANET PICKS
52 WEEK #31
AMERICAN SPLENDOR #4
BATMAN CONFIDENTIAL #1
DESOLATION JONES #8
DETECTIVE COMICS #826
DOCTOR STRANGE: OATH #3
INVINCIBLE #37
JUSTICE SOCIETY OF AMERICA #1
MIDNIGHTER #2
NEWUNIVERSAL #1
SHOWCASE PRESENTS SHAZAM VOL. 1 TP
SUPERMAN CONFIDENTIAL #2
ULTIMATE VISION #1
WALKING DEAD #33

Monday, December 04, 2006

ComicsDC profiled in GW Hatchet, OR, Tooting my own horn


Mike Rhode at the Library of Congress,
photograph by Erin Shea of the GW Hatchet

I was the subject of a profile in today's George Washington University's Hatchet as an alumnus with too much time on his hands, I think. Both the author Megan Marinos, and the photographer Erin Shea, were very pleasant and professional and I'm pleased at the way this turned out (although Hogan's Alley is an actual magazine that will send you a paper copy if you send them money).

International Journal of Comic Art TOC

When I posted on the new issue being available, a comment was left asking about the table of contents. John is in Thailand, interviewing cartoonists, so I just scanned the pages and provide them here - you can click on them to make them readable. It can be ordered by sending a check or international money order for $15 / issue or $30 for the year to John Lent/IJOCA, 669 Ferne Blvd, Drexel Hill, PA 19026. Tell him Mike sent you.

Cartoon America "Why No Trudeau?" answered

Co-curator Sara Duke kindly wrote to me this morning to answer the question posed to me by a visitor to the exhibition.

Mike,

The question of "Why no...?" in Cartoon America, I think is especially true of the comic strip section of the exhibition, because people are passionate about their favorite artists and strips. We could not display all the best comic strips that have been produced since 1895 when the Yellow Kid first made his appearance in the Sunday newspapers. There are simply too many. We selected highlights from the wide range of cartoon art Art Wood collected to provide people with an overview to the collection and introduce the casual visitor to cartoon art in general.

Art Wood compiled a brilliant selection of comic strips by the greatest artists, and for some of the creators the depth of his collecting was magnificent. Repeat visitors to the Library of Congress exhibitions can expect to see cartoon art from the Art Wood collection for years to come.

Qualified researchers may view original works of art in the Art Wood Collection by applying for "Access to Unprocessed Collections" (http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/info/022_unpr.html). We make every effort to serve researchers in a timely manner. Some 500 drawings from over 36,000 original drawings that Mr. Wood sold and donated to the Library of Congress are available (as thumbnails) through the Prints & Photographs Online Catalog (PPOC): http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/catalog.html

While there is one comic strip drawing Trudeau in Art Wood's collection, it was not selected for exhibition. However, Mr. Trudeau has been extremely generous to the Library of Congress over the years. The Library featured the work of Garry Trudeau in 1986 in an Oval Gallery exhibition "Comics that Bite: Doonesbury and Pogo." The press clippings in the file are limited to announcements, but based on the hard copy text, Bernard Reilly, Jr., the curator emphasized the political nature and social satire in the dialogue as well as the distinctive style of the art.

Both Doonesbury and Pogo have been processed into the Prints & Photographs "Cartoon Drawing" filing series. 86 original works by Garry Trudeau are described in the Prints & Photographs Online Catalog, but of course the thumbnails for those works that have been reproduced are impossible to read. There are 115 original drawings by Walt Kelly described in PPOC, and these too, are represented off campus by impossibly small gif files. Why? Because the Library of Congress is dedicated to protecting copyright. We do welcome researchers who wish to view the originals.

Sara W. Duke
Curator, Popular & Applied Graphic Art
Prints & Photographs Division
Library of Congress
Washington, DC 20540-4730

(202) 707-3630 - voice
(202) 707-6647 - fax
sduk@loc.gov
http://www.loc.gov/rr/print/

Sunday, December 03, 2006

Items of interest in the weekend's papers

The Sunday Post Book World has three comics bits. In their
best books of the year,
not one comic made it although under fiction we find - Fragile Things: Short Fictions and Wonders, by Neil Gaiman (Morrow). Gaiman writes in different registers: comedy, satire, pastiche, deadpan, lyrical or whimsical, but almost invariably dark. -- Graham Joyce

Dennis Drabble did pick the new Popeye reprint
from Fantagraphics as one of the top 10 gift books though. And Michael Dirda gave a great review to Neil Gabler's new biography of Walt Disney.

And the Letters section is always fun, with this printed on Saturday - Drawing Disgust: The Post has achieved a new low. The Nov. 25 Drawing Board cartoon on the op-ed page concerning contraception and a presidential "withdrawal plan" was truly disgusting. Enough said. -- Nancy Copeland, Manassas
I'll have to hunt around a bit to see if I can find the 'truly disgusting' cartoon - The Drawing Board is the weekly reprint of 3-4 syndicated cartoons.

Webcomics snuck into an article on Wikipedia on Sunday - "Andrew Klein kept an eye on the drubbing given to an entry about "Cake Pony," a Web comic strip that he writes and illustrates with his girlfriend, Lauren Wong. The editors questioned the strip's notability and huffed that Klein had written the piece himself, a major strike against." For those wondering, Mr. Klein's entry did not survive.

Meanwhile over in the Times, Hellboy toys were described in "Star Wars action figures hit right note for season" by Joseph Szadkowski. The Express's Scott Rosenberg recommended the Superman Ultimate Collector's Edition" DVD set and "The Marvel Encyclopedia" on Friday, while the Examiner ran Afton Woodward's review of "The Animaniacs vol. 2" DVD. I didn't watch the show, but the conclusion, "Comparable only to the classics and unsurpassed in wit and intelligence, 'The Animaniacs' just might be the last great modern children's cartoon" is unsupportable to me. I think we're in a new golden age of television animation now.

In actual comic strips, "Prickly City" was drawn most of the week in manga style by Sarah White as Scott Stantis recovers from surgery. Saturday's Post had a couple of interesting strips - "Zippy" appears as though it might go autobiographical again - I find these to be among Griffith's most interesting strips. And Richard Thompson returned with a December calendar cartoon, although not online. In the Post's Sunday comics, one could find a few interesting bits. Today's "Mutts" was a loving tribute to Winsor McCay's "Little Nemo." And Berke Breathed's Opus skirted on the edge of the Danish Islam cartoon controversy. And the "Spider-Man Collectible Series vol. 16" distributed in Saturday's Examiner had a cover by Frenz and Milgrom which must have been done for a previous reprint since neither of them work for Marvel anymore.

Cartoon America photographs


I went back yesterday to view the exhibit again so I could write an International Journal of Comic Art review, and also to have my picture taken for an article that should run tomorrow (not that I had anything to do with this exhibit). Boy, Art Wood had an amazing collection. As to the question, "Why no Trudeau?" that was posed to me in the exhibit, I'm researching that (well asking curators Martha Kennedy and Sara Duke) and will get back to you. The Library also has a fine full-color brochure and checklist for the exhibit that's well worth picking up.

So here's some pictures to hold you until the Library gets its own website up.

Illustration
Cruickshank

Kley

Nell Brinkley (and an unfortunately phallic Washington Monument the girls are descending towards).

Vernon Grant, creator of Snap! Crackle! and Pop! elves

Johnny Gruelle

Flagg

Political cartoons
Nast
Political cartoons

Rube Goldberg

Clifford Berryman, Washington cartoonist and creator of the Teddy Bear

Caricature
KAL

Richard Thompson, now with the Washington Post

Animation


Popeye closeup.

Gag cartoons


Comic Strips

Washington Post doesn't censor comic!

Dave Astor reported that newspapers were given an advance warning that "Pearls Before Swine" used the phrase...

...wait for it...

...'BITE ME' on December 2 in case newspapers wanted to pull the strip. Amazingly enough, the censorship-heavy Post ran the strip - if anyone cares, I'll try to dig up the cases where they did censor the comics.

Believe it or not!

Friday, December 01, 2006

Diffee followup - Mankoff interview

Diffee's also posted an interview with Mankoff on his own blog -
Robert Mankoff Interview: Part One, 11.15.2006 and Robert Mankoff Interview: Part Two, 11.27.2006.

Bill Plympton animation at E Street Cinema

According to Arion Berger in the 11/30 Express, Bill Plympton provided animation for the film "F-ck: A Documentary" which is playing at the E Street Cinema at 555 11st St, NW as of today.

Plympton is one of the great twisted cartoonists of our time. He's got a few books out as well.