Ever since I got the news Friday afternoon I’ve been thinking about Alvin and those more-innocent days. I don’t know that I would have otherwise spent a fraction of the time I have trying to fully appreciate the, dare I say, impression that he left on me.
Over the years I would see Alvin at conventions and he always greeted me with a warm hug and we’d talk about or current or upcoming projects. When Alvin would introduce me to someone he knew he’d always do it in the most undeservedly flattering terms which I’d be too embarrassed to even repeat now. He was always encouraging and helpful in anyway way he could be. A few months ago, I called him in something of a panic. I had ordered a couple thousand plastic record sleeves and they were too small for the package they were supposed to house. Alvin had used this kind of record sleeve for the Burns/Killoffer book he released, and before he told me where he got them from and the model number, he offered to send me all of the extras that he had. I told him I had been thinking about diving into letterpress printing, so we talked about that: he told me about his press and its virtues, and which other models are good and why. He was very encouraging and told me that he’d look at any press I’d find and let me know if he thought it was worth the asking price. I thanked him and told him I’d send him one of the promotional booklets I needed the record sleeves for. He shyly told me I didn’t have to, and I’d do better to send it to Charles Burns who would get a kick out it.
Things have been rather silent of late… or rather, they just appear to have been. Things have been brewing, and much attention has been focused on the upcoming Skippy book (slightly delayed after a recent development), and other exciting projects, as well as at least one new “avenue.” Skippy vs The Mob will be available in a few weeks, and then I’ll have some more time to post some visual treats.
As mentioned earlier (or below, if you will), we will be attending the BROOKLYN COMICS & GRAPHICS FESTIVAL this upcoming Saturday, from 12 – 9PM. ¬†We’ll have advance copies of our new books, stationery, as well as super-secret preview copies of some future books as well as announcements of big projects, vintage material, and eye-candy galore! Do make a point to come visit us and support the show!
This past Friday I attended the opening of the new Chris Ware exhibit at the Adam Baumgold Gallery in New York City. There were many notable personalities there that I spotted: Chip Kidd, Charles Burns, Fran√ßoise Mouly, Adrian Tomine, and others. One attendee I didn’t expect to see, though, swooped in from the ceilings, decending on an acrylic-covered original and looked it over.
When I returned a bit later to see how this little fellow was faring, he was gone. Probably on to admire a different piece. But it just goes to show you: even the insects in Manhattan are critics.
- Jonathan Barli
As I mentioned last week, Rick and I embarked on a road trip to relocate a portion (say, only about a 26′ truck’s worth) of his collection. The next week or so was spent going through it all, which, for me, was an educational experience, not to mention one filled with wide-eyed views of various gems that I will be sharing here with you all, as well as some to be used for upcoming projects. One such gem was this newspaper clipping from 1962 focusing on a then-retrospective-looking lad with a budding obsession. How things have changed…
- Jonathan Barli