Monday, August 24, 2009

PR: SMITH magazine announces THE PEKAR PROJECT

Harvey's tackling a new media - should be fun. Also check out Josh Neufeld's A.D.: New Orleans After the Deluge from Smith - I bought the hardcover collection last week.

Harvey Pekar's First Ongoing Webcomics Series

Harvey Pekar's been mining the mundane for magic for more than 30 years in his autobiographical American Splendor comics. Now he has teamed with SMITH and four remarkable artists to create his first ongoing webcomics series—and some of his jazziest work to date. The new stories will appear every other week, with interviews, creator spotlights, and behind-the-scenes goodies, as well as essays and art from Pekar collaborators and inhabitants of the extended Pekarverse.

The Pekar Project seeds were planted when Pekar discovered artist Tara Seibel, a fellow Clevelander. They began collaborating on stories for her blog, Rock City Comix. For The Pekar Project, Pekar has formed a band including editor Jeff Newelt and four artists: Seibel, Joseph Remnant, Rick Parker, and Sean Pryor. Just as Duke Ellington composed pieces with a particular featured soloist in mind, Pekar is tailoring each true-life tale to these artists' individual strengths.

Tara Seibel is the Thelonious Monk of the bunch—wholly different from the rest. Once you lock-in to her avant-garde, design-and-color driven way of doing comics, its like the first time Hendrix starts sounding less like chaos and more like Heaven.

Joseph Remnant was introduced to Pekar by underground comics legend Jay Lynch, and to SMITH by way of his superb work for Arthur Magazine. He's our resident classicist, a chip off the ole' Crumb.

Sean Pryor is a pyrotechnic young artist, who first collaborated with Pekar for Royal Flush magazine, on a boisterous strip that had Pekar reviewing heavy metal CDs.

Rick Parker is a veteran comics master craftsman, with a style at once elegant and mischievous. Parker, a long-time letterer for Marvel Comics, drew the Beavis and Butt-Head Comic Book, currently draws the intro pages for the new Tales From The Crypt comics, and is working on a graphic novel Tales From The Crypt: The Diary of A Stinky Dead Kid.

With The Pekar Project, SMITH has encouraged Harvey to go out there, to go in there, to be abstract, jazzy, esoteric, silly, erudite, and most off all, to have fun. Call it autobiography as poetry, or as art—or call it anything you like. We call ourselves honored to be working with a legend of personal storytelling.

SMITH is proud to present The Pekar Project.

— Jeff Newelt, Comics Editor

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