Original Comic Art Is His Thing
Other Nexus Graphica Columns
For more information, you can try the following:
Comics: Works from the Collection of Robert Boyd
The Great God Pan Is Dead
Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez
Comics Art Fans
No Place Like Home Volume One: Home Again
Mind Mgmt Volume One: The Manager
Recent Books of Interest
No Place Like Home Volume One: Home Again Written by Angelo Tirotto, Art by by Richard Jordan (Image)
After five years in Los Angeles, Dee returns to Emeraldsville, Kansas for the funeral of her parents,
who died when a tornado hit their house. Shortly afterwards, a string of bizarre, violent murders
terrorize the town. As the hunt for the killer continues, Dee discovers that events from 1959
involving her parents and others lie at the heart of the mystery. Creator Tirotto supplies an
intriguing and unexpected tie-in with the classic Wizard of Oz. Though his use of a one-note
Elvis joke wears thin. While at times Jordan's art sparkles, the similar facial characteristics
of the female leads often creates confusion. An interesting take on an over-used
concept, No Place Like Home Volume One: Home Again delivers an entertaining and diverting read,
Mind Mgmt Volume One: The Manager by Matt Kindt (Dark Horse)
Over the past decade, Matt Kindt with works such as Pistolwhip, Super Spy, and Revolver
emerged as a prominent alternative cartoonist. His latest endeavor Mind Mgmt further enhances this worthy
perception. Everyone aboard Flight 815 lose their memories. The event fascinates bestselling
true crime writer Meru, who begins a life-altering journey for the truth. Where is the missing
passenger? Who are the mysterious Immortals that dog her every step? Why is the CIA
interested? What is the Mind Mgmt? And how does this all relate to Meru's
existence? In Mind Mgmt Volume One: The Manager, a collection of the first six issues
of the ongoing series, Kindt evokes the best of Fringe in a dizzifying tale of red herrings,
conspiracy, and mind-bending reality.
Locas vs Locos p.3 by Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez
Fritzi Ritz by Ernie Bushmiller
"The first piece I got was given to me back in 1993 by David Collier," revealed Robert Boyd about his original comic art
collection. "I got it after sending him a fan letter." Since then he amassed some fifty pieces, a self-professed meager
collection, but impressive enough for Boyd's alma mater Rice University to open an exhibit.
The former editor at Dark Horse, Fantagraphics, and Kitchen Sink and Comics Journal contributor admitted surprise by
the interest especially since Rice lacks any comics curriculum. "There are some classes on comics at [the University of
Houston], though. I think Rice's art department is way too small for that. Maybe this exhibit is a start." Boyd garnered
the attention of Christopher Sperandio, a Rice art professor (and someone who has produced several comics with his artistic
partner Simon Grennan) through his blog The Great God Pan Is Dead that primarily focuses on art in Houston and
vicinity. "I occasionally mention that I acquired this or that piece of comic art. Sperandio noticed and proposed the exhibit."
Boyd favors American comic strips from about 1900 to 1960. "Many of these are beyond my means or simply unavailable even
if I wanted them. George Herriman, for example. But a lot are available and in my price range."
His more contemporary tastes come primarily from the descendents of the undergrounds. "This would be work at appeared in
alternative comics or art comics or minicomics or ran as strips in alternative publications . For instance, I have pieces
by Jaime and Gilbert Hernandez in the exhibit -- two artists I revere and whom I consider among the greats. Or another
example is a strip by Alison Bechdel called Dykes to Watch Out For, which ran weekly mostly in
gay and lesbian newspapers and magazines."
He wishes for more late 1960s underground samples. "I have almost nothing from this era because they are exceedingly
rare or else extremely valuable (like any Robert Crumb piece)."
Though there are many notable pieces in his collection, Boyd cites a Ernie Bushmiller Fritzi Ritz Sunday page
from 1946 as a particular favorite. "Bushmiller is most famous for Nancy, which has a reputation for being
the most minimal comic strip possible in terms of art, structure, content, etc. Wally Wood famously said of Nancy that
it takes less effort to read it than to not read it. Before Nancy, he had a strip about Nancy's
aunt, Fritzi. He drew in his super-clean style, but the strips were more adult, and in the example I have, quite
sexy. It's a gorgeous piece of art."
Boyd offers this advice for the new art collector:
1. It's a cheap form of art collecting. You can get a brilliant piece of American art for a couple of hundred dollars.
2. Buy directly from artists when you can. They need the money!
3. Museums for the most part don't collect this work. Not yet at least. So remember when you are collecting this art that you are holding it temporarily for posterity. Take care of your collection. Make it available (online through Comics Art Fans or your own Flickr account) and through public exhibits if that opportunity arises.
4. Respect history and buy older work, especially comic strips.
5. Respect the artform and buy works that show panel progressions. Pin-ups and covers are, to me, less important examples of the art. Art that shows storytelling is much more important.
6. Don't be afraid of auctions. For certain kinds of art, that is the only way you'll ever get it.
7. Only buy what you want!
Comics: Works from the Collection of Robert Boyd runs through April 11.
Little Orphan Annie (May 31, 1948) by Harold Gray
Shrimpy and Paul (1991) by Marc Bell
Copyright © 2013 Rick Klaw
Professional reviewer, geek maven, and optimistic curmudgeon, Rick Klaw has supplied
countless reviews, essays, and fiction for a variety of publications including
The Austin Chronicle, The San Antonio Current,
The Greenwood Encyclopedia of Science Fiction and Fantasy,
Moving Pictures, RevolutionSF,
Conversations With Texas Writers, Electric Velocipede, Cross Plains Universe,
Steampunk, and The Steampunk Bible.
Publisher Weekly called his anthology The Apes of Wrath (Tachyon) "a powerful exploration
of the blurry line between animal and human." Later this year, his new anthology Rayguns Over Texas,
a collection of original science fiction by Texas authors, premieres at Lonestarcon 3.
Klaw can often be found pontificating on Twitter
and over at The Geek Curmudgeon.