Friday, February 27, 2009

Divide et Impera. The book.

As Warren mentioned before, this show started in Portugal a couple of years ago, as part of the International Comics Festival of Amadora. That show had Warren as an artist, and that's one of the losses in the new show. Warren has been developing work that is very close - or so I think - to the spirit which I think brings these incredibly different artists together.

Well, we have Molotiu and Lemos in this new adventure, and I'm happy Second Street Gallery took us in.

Related to the show: I'm publishing a book, the very first from Montesinos, which I hope will be a new chapter in my life, already dedicated to comics in various fronts. The book is titled after the first show, and has this amazingly beautiful wrap-around-cover by Warren. Isn't it something?

The book is at the printer's as we speak, so let's see how it works out. We're using colored paper so the end result will be slightly different, but I'm sure Warren doesn't mind me showing you his drawing (interrupted only by the logo).

The book includes short excerpts, although self-contained (to a certain extent), from Frédéric's, Warren's and Zimbres' books, complete short stories by Aerim and Ilan, and several short pieces from André and Andrei, as well as short texts on their work.

It opens with an essay by me, and has lots of "dialoging" pictures by Warren.

Stay tuned for more information.

Ilan Manouach

Ilan is an immensely proficuous artist. If he's not drawing or making music, he's asleep.

Born in Athens, Greece, 1980, to where he returned after a long stint in Brussels, he has published a handful of books, whether through La Cinquième Couche - Les Lieux et les Choses qui entouraient les gens, desormais, La Mort du Cycliste, Vivre Ensemble (an oubapian exercise on Hansen's Petzi series of books) and the very recent and amazing Frag.

He has also published shorter works in Éprouvette, Glomp, and Le Coup de Grâce, coordinated book projects such as Arbres en plastique, Feuilles en papier (the French version) and The Golden Age (the Greek version).
He also has a couple of books he put out himself with drawings, such as The Horse-Headed Statue. André Lemos published A Vara do Açúcar Da Meia Noite E Nos Bordos dos Peixes through Opuntia Books. The title is a very terribly pornographic pun from English to pidgin Portuguese, but I'm not telling what it means...
Check out his site.

Andrei Molotiu

Andrei Molotiu's blog title says it all: blot comics. But there's a much more than meets the eye (and the brain)!
Molotiu was born in 1967 in Bucharest, Romania, and moved to the United States in 1983. He lives and works as a college professor and artist in Bloomington, Indiana.

He works both with a more traditional approach and computer-assisted techniques to create his very particular strand of work, which can be powerful black-and-white embroideries of thick paint as well as flamboyant colour pieces.

"Re-drawing" is a pretty important verb in his craft.

Make sure you see as much as possible and take in everything it triggers.
You can find his work in many collective publications and seld-published stuff (which I guess is more or less accessible), but stay also tuned for the forthcoming Nautilus (issued by the Danish Fahrenheit).

Fabio Zimbres

Fabio Zimbres was born in São Paulo, Brazil, 1960, and lives and works presently in Porto Alegre, Brazil. He is a veteran that has worked for many, many publications in Brazil, including the now mythical Animal and Chiclete com Banana, but continuing to participate with short stories for contemporary anthologic magazines such as Front, among so many others.

He has a book published by Spanish house Media Vaca, illustrating Blaise Cendrar's Panama. He has also published a couple of years ago a collaboration with the Brazilian rock band Mechanics, which led to the CD/book Música para Antropomorfos, with each story-chapter corresponding to one of the songs.

In the States, you can look up for the Alternative Comics anthology (edited by Ng Suat Tong) Rosetta 2, with the beautifully coloured I Married a Bee:
He also participated in Matt Madden's Exercises in Style, where you'll find Fabio's rendering of the story:

The style is deceiving... Lot's of weird stuff going on with his characters...
And you should see his drawings and notebooks!

Check out his site and blog.

André Lemos

André's wonderful blog is here.

I realize these little bits I wrote are kind of silly but I was thinking of an art-world audience. anywhay, here's what I wrote about the great Mr. Lemos:

André Lemos (Portugal), with crude rendering and stark black and white graphics, creates destabilized and shattered sequences.


André Lemos (Born in 1971 in Lisbon, Portugal, where he lives and works)

Active in the European comics world since the late 80s, Lemos has become one of the most published Portuguese authors abroad, with work featured in domestic publications such as Lx Comics, Canibal Crica, as well as international ones such as Pélure Amére, and Glomp. He has launched recently his own imprint, Opuntia Books, in which he publishes limited editions of artists books and zines. With dozens of short stories published in many magazines and alternative publications, he has published a few solo titles: Quem é este Homem?, Superfight II: George Grosz Vs. André Lemos, Tribute Brute, Even Gravediggers Read Playboy, Family Portraits, Cirque Intraveineuse, Word Games - Shaken Not Stirred, O Percutor Harmónico and Embroidered Muscles. Having worked on a puppet show for national television, a sort of Portuguese Spitting Image, Lemos is also an accomplished mural painter, participating in many group and solo exhibitions as well as receiving many commissions for the decoration of public and private spaces.

And Lemos will be here in Charlottesville next week for the opening! YES! There will be drawing...
Also, he just made a new Opuntia book, to be launched exclusively at the show's opening: Charlottesville's Preliminary Black Blooming (An Amazing & Epic Journey Of A Portuguese Artist, Trying To Meet The Refreshing And Brand New Dogwood Festival's Queen).

Thursday, February 26, 2009

Ae-rim Lee

For the original submission I wrote:

The work of Ae-rim Lee (Korea) relies on bizarre, 70s-psychedelia-inspired designs and situations to reassess received notions of cartoons, comics, and design.


Ae-rim Lee (Born in 1973 in Seoul, South Korea, where she lives and works)

Known in her country by her artistic name, “Rainbow”, Lee’s digitally-generated work has been published in Korean alternative anthologies, publications and urban culture magazines, and has been present at the Angoulême Festival de Bande Dessinee in France when South Korea was the guest country. She is currently completing an MA in animation.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Frédéric Coché

I'll be posting about each artist in the show - I'm sure Pedro will add more info, but here's a start...

I'm beginning with Frédéric Coché whose great work you can see displayed flat in the DeI show post below. Here's what I wrote in application for the SSG show:

Frédéric Coché (France/Germany) uses engraving to revisit art historical sources, arranging them in enigmatic sequences to subvert their original meanings and create new ones.
and here's the bio I sent them: Hortus Sanitatis

Frédéric Coché (Born in Paris, France, in 1975, he presently lives and works in Germany)

Working mostly in several techniques of engraving, Coché has three published books (Hortus Sanitatis, from Fréon, Vie et mort du héros triomphante , from Frémok, and Ars Simia Naturæ, from Oeil du Serpent), with many shorter works published in diverse European publications. He has held many solo shows in galleries across Europe showing his engravings and other work. You can check his profile at Frémok's site, from which you can access to several interviews on his several books (French only):

Coché's work is beautiful but works best in a sequence as in his amazing books. See more at Galerie La Ferronnerie - and special thanks to BN there for her help in getting his work to Charlottesville.)

In the meantime, he has also published recently Hic Sunt Leones (Frémok/Le Signe Noir), whose pages are done by a 4-grid of oil on paper drawings-cum-paintings. Here's a sample of that work:

SSg website

Second Street Gallery has updated their site with some info about the show.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Divide et Impera

Impera et Divide is based on an earlier show Divide et Impera that Pedro curated in 2007 for the Amadora Festival outside Lisbon. I figured an appropriate first post would be images from that great show.

Pedro's show was part of a larger and more mainstream comics festival. Milo Manara was there! Ha ha... DeI was the only real "alt" comics thing there and it was really good.

That's Pedro in the green shirt with Fabio Zimbres, pride of Brasil and one of the artists in the show. The show layout was really great - hopefully my snaps can get across how they made little pages in a huge space really work.

More important was the work itself. I had never seen work by Zimbres, Manaouch, Coché or Lee and was amazed. The work really fit with my ideas about comics and sequential art and how we can find new things in both.

Yes, people looking at MY work. ha ha... Seeing all this great stuff made me want to bring it to the U.S. - all of it straddled a line between fine art and comics, between the spinner rack and white walls and I thought showing this work in a gallery context could do something powerful. So I got with Pedro and we got to work looking for a venue in the States. More on that later, but first one more glory snap for me: