Motherlover is a focused anthology in the vein of Drawn & Quarterly Showcase. It features the work of Nic Breutzman, John and Luke Holden, colors by Raighne Hogan and a foreword by Rob Clough. In late 2009 I proposed the idea for this anthology to Nic, Luke and John. They had all worked together previously and I felt that pairing their work together would produce a unique synergy.
Now it’s 2 years later and the book is being readied to premiere at the Minneapolis Indie Xpo in just a month and a half. Given that 2D Cloud is a rather small publisher, our printing costs exceed what our purse will allow for. That is where this Kickstarter project comes in: the money raised will go directly towards the printing of this book, which we hope to do a run of 1,000 copies. Should we exceed our goal, any additional funds will go towards helping to offset the costs of touring for the artists and perhaps increasing the print-run.
The work itself will be 5.5” wide by 7.5” tall, featuring black and white, 2 color, and some limited 4-color on the cover and interior.
My hope is that fans of both Nic and the Holden brothers' past work, not to mention many a discerning comics reader, will help us reach our goal by using Kickstarter as a way to pre-order this comic. Maybe they/you would like to add on top of this great collection of comics some cool swag? Here are some sample art / print / zine works by Luke Holden that are part of the thank you gifts.
At any time, should you wish to change-up or add to your thank you gifts, you can certainly do so. If you run into any problems or questions on any of this, please send us a quick note and we will get to it ASAP.
Underground comics communities pop up in funny places, sometimes. While the 60s underground movement eventually found a nexus point in San Francisco, there were initial outposts in Texas and Ohio, amongst other places. In more recent times, John Porcellino's Spit and a Half distro operated out of Denver, while the USS Catastrophe crew of Kevin Huizenga, Ted May & Dan Zettwoch makes its home in St. Louis. That said, the most vibrant modern minicomics communities still tend to thrive mostly on the coasts. The scenes in Portland and San Francisco are especially productive, and there's also plenty of activity to be found in Manhattan and Brooklyn. There's also a slightly more diffuse, yet still vital, scene in Chicago. What those cities have in common is either being a cosmopolitan megalopolis or a smaller, arts-centered community. There's another commonality: the presence of an institution teaching comics and a student-led movement encouraging self-publication.
One of the newest and most exciting of these movements comes from the North Country, centered around Minneapolis. The state that produced Bob Dylan and Prince is also responsible for some of the most exciting work in the world of minicomics today. While the Minneapolis College of Art & Design (MCAD) is responsible for some of the sheer volume of interesting student work, there's simply been a small but growing critical mass of talented young cartoonists from this area as well as some great veterans. Zak Sally teaches at MCAD for example, and his own La Mano press has published some truly excellent comics. The great cartoonist Tom Kaczynski has his own minicomics publishing concern in Uncivilized Books and also teaches at MCAD. Other young cartoonists like Will Dinski, Toby Jones, Anna Bongiovani, Madeline Quiripel and Ed Choy Moorman have made their mark, with Dinski winning the Isotope Award for Minicomics Excellence.
Perhaps the most interesting and ambitious publisher in Minneapolis is 2D Cloud, the concern publishing this very anthology. Readers of their Good Minnesotan anthology will be familiar with John & Luke Holden, two brothers with a touch for the bizarre and grotesque. Their story "The Boys" is characteristic of their uncanny understanding of the ways in which children interact and how this interaction can be enormously unsettling. Their scrawled drawings and smeared, lurid watercolors evoke both childhood and the sort of drawings children might make. It should be noted that Hogan did the colors for their story, and his choice of hues has been 2D Cloud's secret weapon in any number of projects. There's something almost visceral about his color sense, something that evokes sickness or injury.
The most notable talent 2D Cloud has introduced to the world of comics, however, is Nicholas Breutzman. Breutzman's work is formally ambitious in terms of his page formatting, but he really makes his mark with his character design. In "You Can't Be Here", he mixes naturalistic backgrounds and character designs with slightly loose, rubbery facial expressions. The result is both absurd and disturbing, as Breutzman has a way of evoking dread and malaise in equal measures. Like the Holden brothers, Breutzman tends to explore the dark side of small town and suburban life, the ways in which such communities frequently compel its inhabitants to extreme actions in an effort to alleviate boredom, and the ways in which man and nature have a frequently adversarial relationship. When one reads a story by Breutzman, one always gets the sense that something horrible is about to happen, yet can't look away. "Photograph" is unsettling in a different way, as its characters attempt to connect with each other in the moment and over time but ultimately find it to be a fruitless pursuit. There's a bleak beauty in Breutzman's unsparing vision, a grim understanding of how things really are and the ways in which we try to conceal this truth. The darkness of this book's themes should not daunt an adventurous reader because Mother Lover explores work that is both emotionally powerful and uncomfortably familiar.
Note: if you would be so kind to throw in some cash for shipping, that would be kind. Rates are as follows:
3$ US 5$ Canada 15$ International -- Thanks!
Lastly, here is one of many funny video's featuring John Holden. Enjoy!!
- (30 days)