How Lee & Kirby's "Fantastic Four" Birthed the Marvel Universe, Part 1
Japanese collectibles manufacturer Good Smile Company has debuted Michelangelo, the second in a series of Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles statues inspired by the art of Eisner-winning illustrator James Jean. Leonardo was revealed in October.
Standing about 8.7 inches tall, the Michelangelo statue will connect with the other three to create a larger diorama. It’s set for release in July for $129.99.
Eagle-eyed attendees at New York Comic Con may have been lucky enough to see prototypes of Good Smile Company’s Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtle sculptures, based on the work of Eisner Award-winning artist James Jean.
The four sculptures, which can be combined into a larger diorama, is the result of a collaboration between Jean and Good Smile President Takanori Aki, who asked his friend to create an image reminiscent of the comic-book version of the Turtles.
We’ve been taking an active interest in James Jean’s post-comics career in fine art, covering the multiple-Eisner winner’s exhibition Parallel Lives at New York City’s Jack Tilton Gallery in January, and featuring the innovative e-book created from that show’s catalog in June. However, a worrying interview with Juxtapoz magazine designed to publicize the show makes it clear Jean’s head was in a very negative place, preoccupied with the details of a messy and painful divorce that was on the verge of leaving him bankrupt and at the end of his tether.
Jean’s response to the situation appears to have been to disappear for a while, but he’s reemerged in Asia, seemingly never being too specific about his location, and posting this message via his Instagram account:
I wrote in January about James Jean’s Parallel Lives exhibition at the Tilton Gallery in New York City, and then, a few days later, about the show’s catalog selling out in record time. Unfortunately, in the gap between uploading the images for the post and writing the text, the book went from on sale to out of stock, causing me to do a quick re-write. I thought the amazing examples of Jean’s artwork were newsworthy in their own right, and chose to file the story anyway. But as one commenter wrote at the time, “Thanks for all the great pictures of a book I can’t buy!”
Paul from Vancouver, you completely nailed the problem, and your comment has stuck with me. So you were the first person I thought of when I saw this: The catalog’s publisher, Pressure Printing, has brought the book back on the market, now as a decidedly innovative-sounding digital edition.
Just as an addendum to Wednesday’s news when we ran a link to the modern art blog Arrested Motion’s preview coverage of the new James Jean exhibition at New York’s Tilton Gallery: they have now posted a couple of pages of images from the show’s catalog, published by Pressure Printing in a signed-and-numbered limited edition of 1000 that sold out in less than two days — well, it was an extremely handsome edition, packed full of beautiful new work, priced at only $38! Presumably when these start showing up soon on Ebay, they’ll be going for considerably more than that. Join me in consoling yourself for missing out on this bargain by checking out the gallery of beautiful artwork below. Continue Reading »
James Jean‘s new solo exhibition “Parallel Lives” opens today at the Tilton Gallery in New York City. It’s great to see the former Vertigo staple continue to make a splash in the fine art world with his amazing work. The art blog Arrested Motion has a three-page preview of the spectacular show, with many shots of Jean and his team installing giant multi-canvas/multi-media pieces. See some examples below.
We’ve mentioned ex-Fables cover artist James Jean’s esoteric post-comics endeavors before (here and here, to be precise). Following up on last month’s announcement that he’s launching a range of designs at Hong Kong’s Lane Crawford boutique, images of his mural at the store’s Blitz gallery have now appeared at his website, and have since spread like wildfire across the Internet (detailed close-ups below). What has perhaps been less spotted is the coverage of Jean’s work in situ at Blitz by the art and design Tumblr Curious Fiend, from two weeks ago. Their photography reveals how Jean designed a space to display his creations that is as beautiful and intricate as the work itself.
Following up from last week’s opening of their joint exhibitions at New York City’s John Levine Gallery, the contemporary art magazine Hi-Fructose has an image-rich, wholly enthusiastic review of the twin shows of Ashley Wood and Jeremy Geddes.
Another sometimes-comics artist, James Jean, is again producing work in unexpected formats (remember his delightful wooden wedding invitations?). Check out that work, and more by street artists Joe & Max, sculptor Tim Bruckner, Tim Maclean and more, below.
Former Fables cover artist James Jean seems to have left comics entirely to pursue avenues in illustration and fine art. He recently posted on his blog some intricately detailed wooden lasercut wedding invitations he designed for some friends in Los Angeles: one born in the year of the ox, another in the year of the snake. Continue Reading »
A hearty and heartfelt congratulations to publisher Chris Pitzer on the ninth anniversary of the formation of his fine line of comics, AdHouse Books (and more recently its distribution wing, AdDistro). Pitzer is marking the occasion by telling the stories behind nine of the company’s releases, and the result is a mix insight into the kinds of challenges any small-press comics publisher must face, and the qualities that make this particular small-press comics publisher such a valuable one.
With an output ranging from high-end art books like Paul Pope’s Pulphope and James Jean’s Process Recess to thoughtful graphic novels like Josh Cotter’s Skyscrapers of the Midwest and Adam Hines’s Duncan the Wonder Dog, it’s tough to say exactly what “an AdHouse book” will be like, but with Pitzer’s attention to design and reproduction behind every one, you generally can count on it being gorgeous. And as the stories told by Pitzer about books like Pulpatoon Pilgrimage, Skyscrapers, Duncan and so on indicate, the chances are also good that he’s gone to bat for a largely unknown and unpublished talent. That’s an admirable thing for a publisher to do once, let alone over and over again for nearly a decade.
Publishing | Mark Evanier, who is providing editorial assistance on Fantagraphics’ long-awaited Walt Kelly Pogo collections, notes that the first volume has gone to print. “My friend, the lovely Carolyn Kelly, lovingly supervised the loving restoration of her lovely father’s lovely strip and she also did the lovely design of this lovely book and its lovely dust jacket and the lovely imprints under that lovely dust jacket. Sure sounds like a labor of love to me. Not that the contents need any help but the strips are supplemented by a foreword from writer (and friend o’ Walt’s) Jimmy Breslin and essays/annotations by Steve Thompson, R.C. Harvey and myself. If I were you, I’d read all that text stuff after I read the strips themselves about eleven times.” [News from Me]
Comics | Todd Allen runs through some of the “actual changes” to the DC titles come September, noting the eight new (or fairly new, or returning after being absent) writers, plus four who have been “poached” from Vertigo. [Indignant Online]
Comics | Martin Wisse takes The Atlantic to task for publishing an “utterly dull and middlebrow” list of 10 nonfiction graphic novels they called “masterpieces.” He notes that when commenters call out the author for not listing any works by Joe Sacco, she responds that she “chickened out” on including Footnotes in Gaza because “the topic is so polarizing.” Tom Spurgeon has commentary as well, noting, “It’s galling that an author can admit to not including something for publication because they were afraid of Internet reprisals and not be automatically fired and/or laughed out of town.” [Wis[s]e Words, The Comics Reporter]
This gorgeous poster created by artist James Jean for the April 10th performance of composer Ennio Morricone’s music The Royal Albert Hall is being sold as a limited-edition print. The ATP Concerts website states the price is “available on request,” but a commenter here was quoted $133.88 for a print shipped to the United States — which, really, is less expensive than I thought it’d be.
(via Super Punch)
Your wallet may still be smarting from the beating it received at the hands of SLG and Buenaventura’s big bottom-line-boosting sales, but there’s no rest for the weary: Now the impeccably designed comics of indie publisher AdHouse Books are getting in on the act.
Click over to AdHouse’s holiday-season sale (initially announced right here on Robot 6!) to find killer deals on comics ranging from Joshua W. Cotter’s book-of-the-year candidate Driven by Lemons to serial Eisner Award-winner James Jean’s lovely sketchbook The Hallowed Seam: Process Recess Vol. 3 to Fred Chao’s multiple Eisner-nominated “adventure-scifi-love story” Johnny Hiro.
And to get you in the mood for saving money, why not watch this preview video for Driven by Lemons, set to the unforgettable strains of Stan Bush’s “The Touch” from Transformers: The Movie? After all, if you buy that comic, you’re a winner, you’re nobody’s fool.
Coming soon from Giant Robot are three different packages of mints designed by artist James Jean. Check out the other two designs by following the link.
Drawn! has an early look at Kindling, a series of 12 prints by James Jean and published by Chronicle Books. The editor of the project says in the comments that the book will be available for sale at Comic-Con next week.