Bibliophilia . . . Turning the Pages.

Barbara Wildenboer, Spinning Tales II, 2017. 

 

There is an exiting exhibition featuring book art currently running at the ABSA Art Gallery in Johannesburg till the 10th of March. Book art exhibitions are often rare as they are more a niche form of artistic expression when taken into the context of broader art world production. If you are a book art enthusiast, then there is still ample time to visit the show if you are in the area. Bibliophilia . . . Turning the Pages, encompasses a group show where selected South African artists engage with the notion of the book. In creating works that express their admiration for the written word, they use the book as an open ended stucture and aid in order to create new and distinctive forms of visual experience. Artists featured, include - Banele Khoza, Barbara Wildenboer, Stephan Erasmus, Collen Maswanganyi, Angelique Koekemoer, Bongani Njalo, Martin Onyis, Mohamed, Nieuwoudt and Kathleen Sawyer. 

ABSA Art Gallery, ABSA Towers North, 161 Main Road, Johannesburg. 

Last Updated on Monday, 20 February 2017 14:12

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Johnny Ryan on Parody

Johnny Ryan, The Comics Book Holocaust, 2006 

Johnny Ryan is an alternative american comics creator. His in your face attitude when it comes to comics, will either make you love him or hate him. A notion that becomes highly apparant with The Comics Book Holocaust, published in 2006, it could be described as something out of the archives. However, when it comes to the nature of parody in comics, this book is a great example, in the sense that no cows are held sacred. Almost every comic strip, comic book series or graphic novel that a comics enthusiast is expected to be exposed to, is subsequently turned inside out with Ryan's acerbic wit and sarcastic humour. Which is great for the furthering the development of a comics dialogue, since all that is placed on a pedestal is relegated to the dirt in Ryan's world. For a great article on Ryan's use of parody in comics, follow this link for an in-depth interview between Noah Berlatsky and Johnny Ryan that featured in the Comics Journal #279. 

 Johnny Ryan, The Comics Book Holocaust

 

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 15 February 2017 08:08

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Creating a graphic novel, a reality check.

Scribble, by Sean Michael Robinson. 

Sean Michael Robinson is a high school art teacher, and he is one of those individuals with an unfinished, unpublished and relatively unseen longform graphic novel behind his name. Titled: Discards, Robinson has spent more than four years on this personal project, with more than three hundred completed pages, in a highly detailed hand, which is no small feat. For Robinson, Discards, constitutes a failure, he views it as a journeyman project that remains uncompleted, but has however left him with the skillset that allows him to work as a freelance illustrater and to tell stories. In retrospect, on making a longform graphic novel and the pitfalls thereof, Robinson wrote a very insightful article, under the rubric of How not to make a comic. It is a must read, and shines light on the problems he faced, as well what process and stylistic areas to be hyper vigilant about when creating your own long form graphic novel. 

Robinson, Discards Page 42. 

Robinson, Throw. 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 07 February 2017 12:11

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Kirsten Sims on Saturn Return

Kirsten Sims, So on and So Forth, 2017, 111cm x 80cm. 

Kirsten Sims is a well known feature when it comes to Salon 91 and South African illustration. With a solo show in Toronto, Canada under her belt, Sims is back in action and starting 2017 with a bang. A preview of her latest scheduled solo show, Saturn Return, will feature at The Cape Town Art Fair in mid Feb. A little prequel to the main event, to be hosted at Salon 91 from the 21st June until the 29th July. Sims has the great ability to change the ordinary into  the extraordinary through her art. Taking inspiration from the everyday, she creates works that intersects the existing with the imagined, creating spaces and scenarios, that easily shifts from the whimsical to the dramatical. For a good show, put this on your calendar.

Last Updated on Monday, 06 February 2017 09:38

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BlueJackal-Howl for Entries

Lokesh Khodke's 1 page take on Rohith Vemula's final words.

Born in 2015 and based in India, BlueJackal  is a collective with a different take. Comprising of writers, artists, activists and researchers, they form a commonality that engage with the world through a broad range of creative and philosophical interests. The core members of the group comprise of Shefalee Jain, Lokesh Khodke, Vasvi Oza and Shivangi Singh. To them, BlueJackal is a forum, a platform through which they can explore their shared proclivities, as applied to illustration, comics and children's books. One permanent feature of this collective is an ongoing project titled: SITUATION COMICS. In which they propose an episode or a situation (in some cases it might be a fabulation) and ask for public engagement in the form of a one page comic. Situation Comics 1 can be viewed as an intersection between comics and history. A moment in time, as the situation proposed was a 1 page comic on the suicide note of student activist Rohith Vemula, who battled against the inherent caste structure and subsequent discrimination at the Hyderabad University in India. In this regard, comics can be employed as a multifaceted medium that engages critically with an episode rife with complexity, adding a different nuance to the dialogue surrounding Rohith Vemula's death. For SITUATION COMICS 2, they've proposed a soundpiece by Sun-Ra, titled: I seek a new world. Sun-Ra, is an Afro-American jazz-composer, poet and philosopher and can be viewed as one of the creators of Afrofuturism, a movement through which new, empowering identities could be envisioned for the marginalised. Closing date is 20th February 2017. 

An example of Situation Comics 1 by Lokesh Khodke. 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 February 2017 08:25

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