Showing posts with label Joost Swarte. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Joost Swarte. Show all posts

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Joost Swarte sketches from Small Press Expo 2008

Joost Swarte was kind enough to sketch in some of his books for me over a cup of coffee at the Small Press Expo. I never thought I'd get to meet him. He's been one of my favorite cartoonists for years. He was very friendly and interesting. His early training in industrial design definitely influenced his work We talked a bit about a recent design of a long stained glass window for a courthouse until he had to go to a panel on Herge, but he thinks I might have the largest collection of his signed books in the States. Heh, I've got more I didn't bring to get signed... (and thanks to Barbara Poestema for bringing two of these back from the Netherlands for me this summer!) Here's shots of the sketches he did.

100_6254 Swarte - Dr Ben Cine 1

100_6255 Swarte - Dr Ben Cine 2

100_6253 Swarte - Dr. Ben Cine A-Z

100_6252 Swarte - Coton and Piston-Voiture

100_6251 Swarte - Coton and Piston-Porte-Monnaie

100_6250 Swarte - Coton and Piston-Journal Phenomenal

100_6249 Swarte - Kulture and Technik

100_6258 Swarte - Niet Zo 2

100_6257 Swarte - RAW 2-1

100_6256 Swarte - Glas en Lood

And I met Istvan Banyai, the awesome illustrator, who came to the Expo to see Joost! Another one of my favorites!

Finally, Michael Cavna who I got to meet briefly has a good roundup of SPX quotes online today - "The Morning Line: Obama! Palin! Who's Got the Best Line?..." By Michael Cavna, Washington Post Comic Riffs blog October 8, 2008.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

SPX 2008 - a few bits

At the Saturday panel on political cartoons, Frank Camusso said, "The internet really is a great place to suck." Ted Rall commented later in the same panel, "It gets really tiresome to do cartoons to remind people that torture is wrong."

On the Joost Swarte panel, he covered bits of his career. A few interesting points that I noted:

He designed stamps for a special December holiday mailing which have a reduced rate. He put the text of the stamps explanation of the rates in the center of the sheet so they couldn't be discarded. The stamp itself people delivering mail to each other until light shines at the end of the tunnel (ie the center of the stamp).

Swarte was majorly influenced by Willem's underground work, and then by the Americans in Zap Comix like Crumb, Shelton, Wilson, Moscosco and Spiegleman (with whom he worked on Raw).

The building he designed for Haarlem's arts center can be seen at The photos he showed looked very cool.

He's illustrated three novels by a Dutch writer - Neskio perhaps? These looked interesting. He designed the illustrations to work as a flip book with the character's head centered throughout in one of them.

One thing he showed was his latest comic work - a short story Exercise of Style #100, based on Queneau's 99 Exercises in Style.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

Small Press Expo 2008 photos

Here's some shots from Saturday. Remember that I'll be interviewing Richard Thompson at 5 pm downstairs. Richard will also be signing his books during the day (and you can always catch me to buy a Harvey Pekar: Conversations).

100_6230 Richard Thompson and Joost Swarte
Richard Thompson and Joost Swart

100_6231 Richard Thompson and Joost Swarte
Richard Thompson and Joost Swart

100_6232 Nick Anderson
Mark Anderson of Andertoons

100_6233 Nick Anderson
Mark Anderson of Andertoons

100_6234 Thompson Karasik and Burford
Richard Thompson, Paul Karasik and Brendan Burford

100_6235 Swarte and Sorenson
Joost Swarte and Jen Sorenson

100_6236 Swarte and Sorenson
Joost Swarte and Jen Sorenson

100_6237 Derf

100_6238 Jen Sorenson
Jen Sorenson

100_6239 Joost Swarte
Joost Swarte

100_6240 Marc Singer, Joost Swarte, Richard Thompson
Howard U. professor Marc Singer, Joost Swarte, Richard Thompson

100_6241 Jason Lutes
Jason Lutes.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Small Press Expo Announces its Slate of Discussion Panels for SPX 2008

Bill Kartalopoulos has set up a rich set of programs for SPX. These all look good, darn it.

I appear to be interviewing Our Man Thompson, probably on Sunday I'm told. I've started the pre-interview and can confidently report that his favorite desserts are "either a canoli or Amy's cherry pie." Look for detailed discussions about our children still to come. If one has any questions one wants answered, let me know.

Small Press Expo Announces its Slate of Discussion Panels for SPX 2008

For Immediate Release
Contact: Warren Bernard
Phone: 301-537-4615

Bethesda, Maryland; September 18, 2008 – Small Press Expo (SPX) 2008 announces its slate of panels, creator Q&As and Spotlight sessions for SPX 2008. This year we feature Joost Swarte, Ben Katchor and Richard Thompson in one on one interview’s along with a diverse series of panels on all aspects of comics.

SPX will be held on Saturday, October 4 and Sunday, October 5 at the North Bethesda Marriott Hotel and Conference Center, across form the White Flint Metro stop. Admission is $8 per day and $15 for both days.

For more information on SPX and the Ignatz Awards, please visit our web site at

Below are the discussion panels for SPX 2008. See our web site above for times and locations of the panels.

Q+A and Spotlights

Joost Swarte Q+A

Joost Swarte has produced comics, illustrations, graphics and architectural designs that have made him a legend in his native Netherlands. His clear line-influenced avant-garde comics were introduced to American audiences in RAW and his illustrations have graced the covers and pages of The New Yorker. Cartoonist, teacher and editor Paul Karasik will moderate a special spotlight session with the artist.

Ben Katchor Spotlight

Ben Katchor has long chronicled the pleasures of urban decay and small-scale ambition in comic strips including Julius Knipl: Real Estate Photographer, Hotel and Farm, and The Cardboard Valise. He is also the author of the graphic novel The Jew of New York and has collaborated on theatrical productions with musicians Bang on a Can and Mark Mulcahy. Today he will present full-color strips from his monthly series in Metropolis Magazine and answer questions moderated by comics scholar Mike Wenthe.

Bryan Lee O’Malley Q+A

Bryan Lee O’Malley has gained an enormous audience as the author of the multi-volume “Scott Pilgrim” series, combining manga-influenced artwork with contemporary pop culture motifs to spin a bubblegum saga of youth’s modern pursuit of romance and rock. Comics critic Joe “Jog” McCulloch will lead the discussion.

James Kochalka in Conversation

Alt-comics perennial James Kochalka will reflect on his career to date in a wide-ranging conversation with Heidi MacDonald, covering his whimsically semi-autobiographical Magic Boy character, his online autobiographical comic strip American Elf, children’s comics, and, of course, Super F*ckers.

Richard Thompson Spotlight

Richard Thompson is an illustrator whose work has appeared in The New Yorker and The Atlantic Monthly and a cartoonist whose weekly strip Richard’s Poor Almanac appears in the Washington Post and whose daily strip Cul de Sac is syndicated nationally. In this special spotlight presentation Richard will discuss his work and career with comics scholar Mike Rhode.


CCS Workshop

Join faculty members Robyn Chapman and Alec Longstreth join CCS graduate Joseph Lambert for a presentation on The Center for Cartoon Studies' unique curriculum and a hands-on cartoon workshop. Robyn will present some of CCS's most successful classroom exercises, including a comic book revision of the classic fable, Tortoise and the Hare. Audience members will be invited to join in a cartooning exercise and make their own page of comics. No matter how much or little experience you have, you will leave this workshop having drawn a comics page!

Critics’ Roundtable

A panel of comics critics will consider crucial topics facing the art form and industry in a special roundtable session. Panelists will include Rob Clough, Gary Groth, Tim Hodler and Joe “Jog” McCulloch in a session moderated by Bill Kartalopoulos.

Cartooning in Collaboration/Collaboration in Cartooning

Co-moderators and mini-comics collaborators Isaac Cates and Mike Wenthe will lead this unique panel discussion on the challenges, problems, and pleasures of collaborative comics making. Panelists Becky Cloonan, Mike Dawson, Jim Ottaviani, Frank Santoro and Dash Shaw will discuss their varying experiences with the collaborative process.

The Page as Canvas

Alongside the word balloon, the formal device most closely associated with comics is the panel grid itself, the framework that provides structure and sequence to most comics pages. What happens when artists break the grid and use the page more broadly as a narrative canvas? What problems and opportunities does this approach present? Moderator Austin English will explore this topic with panelists Molly O’Connell, Juliacks, Jillian Tamaki, and Lauren Weinstein.

Background, Setting and Subject

Sometimes considered a separate element – and even a separate craft – in commercial comics, the rendering of background or setting is often itself a major subject in auteurial comics. Moderator Rob Clough will delve into this topic with panelists Kevin Huizenga, Jason Lutes and Ben Katchor.

Hergé and the Clear Line

In 1977 Joost Swarte coined the term “clear line” to describe the style employed by Tintin creator Hergé. Since then Swarte has been one of several artists to employ elements of that style to vastly different ends. Moderator Bill Kartalopoulos will narrate a slideshow presentation about the clear line style, followed by commentary and discussion by Jason Lutes, Swarte, and Kim Thompson.

The Kramers Ergot 7 Panel

One of the most hotly anticipated (and occasionally controversial) comics projects in recent years is Kramers Ergot 7, the forthcoming installment of the landmark contemporary comics anthology series, which offers contributing cartoonists the opportunity to produce new work at Little Nemo-scale in a deluxe full-color hardcover format. Moderator Bill Kartalopoulos will discuss the project with publisher Alvin Buenaventura and contributing artists including CF, Kevin Huizenga, Ben Katchor and Matthew Thurber.

Kim Thompson: Vingt Sur 20

Fantagraphics co-publisher Kim Thomspon presents "Vingt sur 20: French Comics from Goscinny to Satrapi," a slideshow lecture on the twenty men and women who, over a generation, redrew la bande dessinée française from a children's medium into le neuvième art.

Children’s and YA Comic Books

Comics were long considered a children’s medium before ambitious cartoonists began making comics for an adult audience. More recently, good work for children had nearly become an endangered species before a contemporary resurgence in comics for younger audiences. Panelists Frank Cammuso, Hope Larson, Dave Roman and Raina Telgemeier will discuss issues related to making comics for children and young adults.

Small Press Publishers’ Roundtable

A group of small press comics publishers discuss the opportunities and challenges of publishing comics and reaching audiences today. Moderator Rob Clough will lead a discussion with publishers including Leon Avalino (Secret Acres), Alvin Buenaventura (Buenaventura Press), Randy Cheng (Bodega), and Dylan Williams (Sparkplug).

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Joost Swarte at SPX!

from the New Yorker, Feb 19 2007.

Joost Swarte, one of my absolutely favorite artists will be at the Small Press Expo this year:

Small Press Expo Announces New Yorker Artist Joost Swarte As The First Guest for SPX 2008

For Immediate Release Contact: Warren Bernard

Bethesda, Maryland; June 16, 2008 - The Small Press Expo (SPX), the preeminent showcase for the exhibition of independent comic books, graphic novels and alternative political cartoons, is proud to announce that we hosting the internationally famous Dutch cartoonist and designer Joost Swarte as the first guest for SPX 2008.

This year, SPX will be held Saturday, October 4 and Sunday, October 5 at The North Bethesda Marriott Convention Center in Bethesda, Maryland.

Mr. Swarte is best known to American audiences for his covers and illustrations for The New Yorker, along with his internationally recognized comic and poster work. He has extended his unique cartoon style into the world of industrial design by designing stained glass installations, sculptures and furniture, as well as the Toneelshuur Theater in Haarlem, The Netherlands. SPX is proud to host Mr. Swarte in one of his rare United States appearances.

Additional guests will be added over the next few weeks, please stay tuned for those announcements.

For further information on SPX, go to the website at

To request an interview or other media related inquiries, please contact Warren Bernard at

SPX, a non-profit organization, brings together more than 300 artists and publishers to meet their readers, booksellers and distributors each year. Graphic novels, political cartoon books and alternative comics will all be on display and for sale by their authors and illustrators. A series of panel discussions will also be held of interest to readers, academicians and creators of graphic novels and political cartoons.

SPX will be open to the public from 11 am - 7 pm, Saturday, October 4 and Noon - 6 pm Sunday, October 5. Admission is $8 for a single day and $15 for both days.

SPX culminates with the presentation of the 12th Annual Ignatz Awards for outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning that will occur Saturday night, October 4. The Ignatz is the first Festival Prize in the US comic book industry, with winners chosen by balloting during the SPX.

As in previous years, all profits from the SPX will go to support the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund (CBLDF), protecting the First Amendment rights of comic book readers and professionals. For more information on the CBLDF, go to their website at

Founded in 1994, SPX is North America's premier alternative comic-book festival. This annual event brings together comic creators, publishers and more than 3000 fans together to celebrate the art of storytelling.