Beyond superheroes, zombies, and other fantastic beings, the stars of today’s graphic novels are often the authors themselves. Honest and intimate memoirs such as Alison Bechdel’s Fun Home, Art Spiegelman’s Maus, and Roz Chast’s Can’t We Talk About Something More Pleasant? are potent mixes of words and pictures.
This illustrated presentation will provide an overview of the current crop of graphic novel memoirs and discuss the evolution of autobiography in comic books over the past 50 years, with visuals from dozens of authors. These graphic memoirs explore family dynamics, historical events, and medical issues with humor, insight, and compassion.
Some of the highlights from the 1960s to today: the outrageous, comedic works of R. Crumb (Zap), the working-class stories of Harvey Pekar (American Splendor), the personal and political reflections of Marjane Satrapi (Persepolis), and the engaging teen memoirs of Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Sisters).
From a cartoonist’s perspective, Sikoryak will describe how captions, dialogue balloons, and images combine to tell a story, and how visual layout and pacing are used to create a deep experience. The unique drawing styles of each artist contribute to the emotional impact as well.