Archive for the 'General Interest' Category

Laura Park Featured in Chicago Tribune

Laura Park was profiled in the “Me, My Shelf, and I” feature of the Chicago Tribune, which highlights the personal libraries of different Chicago writers.  The article includes photos of Laura’s studio and selections from her great collection of comics and antique books. Check out the article and photo gallery here!

Laura’s newest minicomic, Do Not Disturb My Waking Dream #4 is available through the Uncivilized Books store and is shipping now! Get yours here.

Over The Wall makes YALSA’s Great Graphic Novels 2014 list

YALSA (Young Adult Library Services Association) presents a list every year for graphic novels that meet the criteria of “good quality literature, and an appealing read for teens” – this year, Peter Wartman’s Over The Wall made the list (out of 122 official nominations, no less), and we couldn’t be happier! Congratulations Peter!

Peter is currently working on the sequel to Over The Wall, and he’s posting a new page weekly…check out: Stonebreaker!

Check out YALSA’s entire list here!

This Is Infamous visits New Jobs

Shea Hennum of This Is Infamous reviewed Dash Shaw’s New Jobs. Hennum dug the comic’s “loose, expressionistic inks and emotional density.”

Lineweight is something every image has, but most artists don’t consciously think about how the lineweight can affect an image on an emotional, as well as visceral, level.  But Shaw does (or he’s accidentally this good), and the images and figures roll into each other. It’s difficult to tell if this is intentional, but it creates a very anxious page. The figures clash and collide into one another, pushing forward, trying to force an exit; it’s an almost semiotic agoraphobia, if that makes any sense.

You can check out the rest of the review here!

Minnesota Daily profiles Dan Wieken

Minnesota Daily recently highlighted artist Dan Wieken (Gagged), and examined his dark illustrations and history with underground comics culture:

Dan Wieken’s art starts in the first-floor hallway of the Tilsner Artists’ Cooperative in St. Paul, with drawings of a deer skull, a woman with mutilated breasts and what Wieken referred to as “a deathripper night attack grim reaper with a sword in a graveyard.”

The plaque underneath his work reads:

“Dan Wieken. Raised in a rural, Minnesota woods shack. With a stick, dirt, and animal hides to mark on, this is the end result of an almost feral mind.”

Have a look at the whole article here!

gagged by dan wieken

Annual Rituals: Lists

Winter. We are located in Minneapolis, one the coldest metropolitan areas in the United States. The Uncivilized Books Headquarters unfortunately are not LEED certified. This causes drafts. The cold seeps in through tiny gaps, cracks and old windows. Oozing near the floor, the arctic air travels from dest to desk subtly chilling and synchronizing the our biorhythms with the hibernating mammals of the north. In other words, things slow down. The pipes of the internet freeze. Information comes our way in semi circular cold clumps, like snowballs. As soon as they hit, it breaks up scattering into a thousand shards of crystalized unintelligibility. Our computer screens are obscured by thin layers of pixel frost refracting all images into mysterious Higgs Boson diagrams. This is normal. Then came the Polar Vortex… We can’t remember much… extremities marked by frost bite, stiff fingers, blood like frozen yogurt… We are still thawing. News of that annual ritual of best-of lists have reached us. We are warmed by these lists:

Our big winner this year was David B.’s Incidents in the Night. The book topped several lists:

Best of 2013 list on Thirteen Minutes: We are proud to see two Uncivilized Books titles on the list:

  • Post York (by James Romberger + Crosby): Set in a post-apocalyptic New York City that thematically values humanitarianism over sheer survival, Post York seeks to re-examine man’s relationship to the natural world. This was the offering from Uncivilized Books that grabbed me by the throat and made me pay full attention to this bold new publishing house helmed by Tom Kaczynski.
  • Eel Mansions (by Derek Van Gieson): It’s like David Lynch on paper, flirtatious, mysterious, and dangerous. Van Gieson laces this burgeoning series with so much addictive critical bait, from cinema, to music, to cultural anthropology observations, that it quickly becomes an irresistible entryway to a never-ending conversation between the handful of people who can keep up with what Van Gieson is slinging with so much affection.

Rob Clough’s blog High-Low has two lists: ‘Best of 2013′ list for Top 25 Long-Form comics, and Top 50 Short-Form comics. Some our titles were:

Minneapolis-based cartoonist and journalist Rob Kirby‘s list includes one of our comics and a couple of books by artists we will be publishing this year:

Comic Book Resources top picks of comics include:

Last, but absolutely not least: Peter Wartman’s Over the Wall was named one of the 10 best GNs of the year by The Onion AV Club!

Congratulations to all artists!

The Morton Report | Tom K on Uncivilized Books

Did we post a link to this interview? Tom Kaczynski discusses the Spring Season at Uncivilized Books. Most of these books are coming out NOW!

Well, you’ve assembled a rather impressive stable of creators who will be contributing both collections of older work as well as newly minted projects to Uncivilized. So, what criteria guide your selection?

A lot of it is serendipity. Many of the artists I’m working with I’ve known and admired for some time. I already worked with Gabrielle [Bell] on mini-comics and it was natural to doThe Voyeurs with her. I’ve known Jon Lewis for a long time. I loved True Swamp since almost its inception. We’ve had a lot of conversations about it over the years. The same is true of Zak Sally. I’ve long admired what he is doing with La Mano. I loved the first volume of Sammy the Mouse.

I met James Romberger at BCGF (Brooklyn Comics and Graphics Festival) last year and when he showed me Post Yorkit just blew me away.


Well, what’s coming out in the near and far terms from Uncivilized?

I’m gearing up to release the spring season of books:

Incidents in the Night by David B., translated by Brian and Sarah Evenson

Amazing Facts and Beyond by Kevin Huizenga and Dan Zettwoch

Sammy the Mouse Book 2 by Zak Sally

Over the Wall by Peter Wartman

Also, I had to push my own book Trans Terra into the spring season. It was supposed to be out now, but I didn’t want it to compete with Beta Testing the Apocalypse, which was just released by Fantagraphics.

Read the entire interview here.

Dan Nadel interviews Gabrielle Bell for TCJ

Gabrielle Bell was interviewed by Dan Nadel over at The Comics Journal. It’s a fascinating conversation covering wide raging topics, from The Voyeurs to Kramer’s Ergot, to her thoughts on autobiographical comics, to… well so much more! Here’s a taste:

NADEL: So then what’s the process in assembling something like Voyeurs? Because it has a definite structure, and it covers a bunch of years. It doesn’t feel like a book of incidental pieces: it actually kind of felt like an arc. I mean, not only because relationships happen, come to an end —

BELL: I think it’s actually — maybe the reader imposes that arc.

NADEL: Really? That wasn’t intentional?

BELL: It was intentional, but I was only working with this big pile of stories.

NADEL: Right. But you must’ve left some out, and —

BELL: Yeah, but — also, there were stories that I left out that were relevant to the “so-called” arc that I left out because they weren’t that good … But I did, I definitely was trying to streamline it. I added a few pages in here and there. Like to begin and end Ron and my relationship, for example, so we didn’t just jump into it. And then also Michel [Gondry] and me. It’s kind of weird to have these two relationships in there, and they’re not really much to do with each other in the story. But mostly, I was just choosing the stories that were the best, or perhaps were reaching for something bigger, so in a way it was more like the natural — I mean, every story that we write, that one individual writes, is kind of the same story — they’re trying to get at the same thing, in a way. So, I think there are natural themes that come about, and that’s, in a way, the arc. As I was doing all the stories, I wasn’t thinking about it in the bigger sense — it was just each story I would try to do the thing as an independent unit. I wish I were more calculating though — if I could somehow make my life into a story.

NADEL: [Laughs.] But you do — I mean, the stuff with Michel in France is very story-ish. You know, you have set-ups, and comic beats, and there are gags in there, and there’s a story. You get there, and you leave, but in between there are these episodes.

BELL: I wish I could tell more of it. I wish I could — when I was working on the movie [Interior Design – a segment within Tokyo! (2008)] with him in Japan, I wish I could have told the story then. I wish I had kept the comics journals then, but we were working so much. We’d get up at 5, 6 in the morning, and then work until 2 in the morning, and there was no time to even jot anything down. But it was so much more interesting than — I feel like, in a way, I’m doing all the comics about the boring parts, because there’s nothing happening, so there’s time to do it.

Read the entire interview here. It’s a good one!

All about polar bears: A new comic by Gabrielle Bell

I got to see this performed live by Gabrielle during her tour in support of The Voyeurs late last year. Now you can all see it!

Gabrielle Belle at Rhode Island College: Story/Line Art Show

We wish we were in the Providence, Rhode Island area. If we were we’d stop by to see the Bannister Gallery’s show Story/Line. Gabrielle Bell will be there on a panel with Kevin Mutch, Ellen Crenshaw, Karl Stevens & Bishakh Som. The panel will be moderated by the illustrious Bill Kartalopoulos! Here are the details:

Story/Line: Narrative Form In Six Graphic Novelists
February 7, 2013 – March 1, 2013
Reception: February 7, 5:00–8:00 p.m.

Panel Discussion: February 7, 6:30 p.m.

Graphic novels, which combine images and text to tell a story, have become a popular medium for self-expression, especially among younger generations. This form is explored by exhibiting the work of six Northeast artists – Gabrielle Bell, Ellen Crenshaw, Emily Flake, Kevin Mutch, Bishakh Som and Karl Stevens.

A panel discussion, moderated by Bill Kartalopoulos, a Brooklyn-based critic, educator, and curator, will be held on Feb. 7.

This exhibition is curated by Natasha Seaman and Karl Stevens. More info here.

Gabrielle Bell is Worthy!

We’ve always known that Gabrielle Bell is worthy! Now you don’t have to take our word for it. Flavorwire recently anointed 8 cartoonists as “worthy successors to Alison Bechdel.” We couldn’t agree more! What they say:

“Already of our favorite alternative cartoonists, Bell’s recent “real-time” memoir The Voyeurs cements her place as one of the genre’s contemporary masters. Incisive and playful all at once, we guarantee you won’t be able to resist her work.”

See the entire article and see who the other great cartoonists are. Get your copy of The Voyeurs here.