True-crime classics from the legendary outsider artist in a big little format.
Ray Olson - Booklist“[...] Coleman's first-person texts aim to convey the perps' minds, while his intricate, energetic drawings radiate violence, twisted passion, and worse. Utterly fascinating if a mite repulsive. ”
Publishers WeeklyColeman, best known for his nightmarish noir paintings and drawings, has produced an engaging, pocket-sized hardcover book drawn from various parts of the great American underbelly. Presented with text facing illustrations on each spread, the book consists of four stories based on real people-researched, appropriated and rewritten in the first person by Coleman-that originally appeared in the anthology Blab!, memoirs of the hobos Jack Black and Boxcar Bertha, and tales of the criminal mayhem of two psychopaths. Coleman's recreation of their authorial voices are striking, rueful, philosophical and manic, but what ties them together are are his drawings. Somewhere between Victorian engravings and folk art, they are haunting and macabre. They're not oppressively dark or gothic; rather, they hit a variety of emotional notes, just as their subjects do. As compelling as the prose is, Coleman's drawings are more so-they have a visceral effect that most words just can't match. The tiny format is fitting for a book best dipped into, rather than taken all at once, and it echoes the pulp magazines that came before it. Coleman's uncompromising, warts-and-all vision of humanity is not for everyone, but this work is still worth a good, long look. (Apr.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
- Fantagraphics Books
- Publication date:
- Product dimensions:
- 4.00(w) x 5.30(h) x 0.70(d)
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