Archive for July 10th, 2006

Women and Children First, Chicago

July 10th, 2006

I’m feeling sort of digitized as I shuttle about the country, like a piece of email that gets opened in Minneapolis, then forwarded to Milwaukee and then to Chicago. Or maybe it’s more that the real world is starting to feel virtual, and I have random access to it. Last night in Chicago, for example, I was startled to see all these people I know show up at my reading. I knew they all lived here, but I was still in virtual mode, and the actual, analog people came as a shock. I can’t quite explain it. It’s sort of like the last ten people you got emails from suddenly manifesting in your living room. There was Nicole Hollander, and Kris Dresen, and Anne Elizabeth Moore, and Carrie Barnett who used to run People Like Us, the erstwhile queer bookstore here, and a couple people introduced themselves as commenters on the blog.

Here’s everyone after the reading, waiting to get their books signed.
line at women and children first

Here’s Kris Dresen and me. If you don’t know her work, go check out her site immediately. She draws incredibly beautiful comics.
Kris Dresen and me

After the reading, I went across the street for sushi with Nicole Hollander, Anne Elizabeth Moore, Cat from the bookstore, and Michelle who owns a nearby art gallery. Here’s me and the awesome Nicole Hollander.

Nicole Hollander and me

Here’s Anne Elizabeth Moore, champion of cartoons everywhere and co-editor of Punk Planet.
anne elizabeth moore

Anne gave me a really nice intro before my reading, talking about the comics world vs. the lgbt literary world, and how my work has mostly been confined to the latter but now that’s changing. That’s a very bad paraphrase, but it’ll have to do for now. Anne is editing the Best American Comics series for Houghton Mifflin, and the first volume is coming out this fall.
cat and michelle

Here’s Cat and Michelle. And here’s Nicole in Michele’s gallery, after dinner, with a paper dress sculpture she made.
nicole's dress

Then Nicole drove me over to Riva Lehrer‘s place. Riva is an astounding portrait artist. Here she is with her latest project. And check out this portrait she did of my friend Eli Clare.

Okay. Jeez, this was an exhausting, link-filled post and I didn’t really explain everything properly. But now I have to run and catch my plane back to Vermont.

Masters of American Comics

July 10th, 2006

Thanks to Anna the sculptor in Madison who told me about the Masters of American Comics exhibit at the Milwaukee Art Museum. I went to it yesterday morning. The hotel shuttle bus dropped me off in front of this cool orange sunburst sculpture.


Then I walked across a bridge to the art museum, which looks like some sort of infernal catapult about to launch a projectile across Lake Michigan.

milwaukee art museum.jpg

The comics exhibit was amazing. The Winsor McKay (Little Nemo in Slumberland) and George Herriman (Krazy Kat) stuff in particular blew me away. It was stunning to see it in black and white, without the printed newspaper colors. Vigorous, free, confident, accurate. I got all excited by McKay’s masterful perspective and architectural renderings. (Some people I’ve talked to have objected to the “Masters” in the title, I guess on sexist grounds, and it’s true there’s not a woman in the whole exhibit, but McKay is a fucking master so I’ll let it go.) His pages were so vivid I wouldn’t have been surprised to see Little Nemo tumble right out onto the gallery floor.

big nemo.jpg

Here I am waiting for the shuttle bus to pick me up and take me back to the hotel so Amy from Broad Vocabulary can drive me to Chicago.

climbing sunburst.jpg