Feb. 04, 2010 | 7:45 p.m.
Reed Johnson caught up with Joe Sacco and found that the cartoonist and correspondent may be taking a break from his hot-zone reportage. If our present era constitutes a sort of End Times for mainstream media, it’s proving to be a golden age for Joe Sacco and other practitioners of comic-book reportage. Balkan blood feuds, the “war on terror” and the agonies of post-diluvium New Orleans are just a few topics taken up by graphic journalists of late. No doubt, some intrepid cartoonist-correspondent is currently roaming Port-au-Prince, sketchbook and flip-cam in hand. Sacco, 49, isn’t just one of this evolving medium’s most skilled advocates. He’s widely credited with inventing a new genre, the investigative-reported war comic book. Among his books are “Palestine” (2001), which won an American Book Award, and “Safe Area Goradze: The War in Eastern Bosnia 1992-1995” (2000), a […]
Dec. 29, 2009 | 8:31 p.m.
REVIEW Los Angeles Times book editor David L. Ulin has reviewed the new book from Joe Sacco and found that it doesn’t answer the big questions about the Middle East and that may be its biggest strength. “Footnotes in Gaza” is not a sequel to his 1996 book “Palestine,” although it’s tempting to read it as such. Both are works of comic-book journalism that take place in the occupied territories and offer a ground’s-eye-view of situations that seem too big, too incomprehensible for us to wrap our minds around. But while “Palestine” is a portrait of its moment, an account of Sacco’s visit to the West Bank and Gaza during the early 1990s, “Footnotes in Gaza” is a more expansive effort. Built around two forgotten incidents (the 1956 mass killings of Palestinians in Rafah and Khan Younis), it is […]
Dec. 27, 2009 | 5:24 p.m.
Marcus Brogdan, in London and writing for the Associated Press, delves into the comics and controversy of the great Joe Sacco, who has a gift for cartooning-as-journalism but a subject matter and subjectivity that add up to a talent for trouble. Sacco’s latest release, “Footnotes in Gaza,” has already become a bookshelf lightning rod. Fans say graphic novelist Joe Sacco has set new standards for the use of the comic book as a documentary medium. Detractors say his portrayals of the Palestinian conflict are filled with distortion, bias and hyperbole. One thing is certain — the award-winning author of “Palestine” leaves few readers indifferent. Sacco’s work has more in common with gonzo journalism than your Sunday comic strip: He travels to the world’s hot spots, from Iraq to Gaza to Sarajevo, immerses himself in the lives of ordinary people and sets out to depict their harsh […]
Sept. 06, 2008 | 1:47 p.m.
One of the most compelling Web comics to date is Josh Neufeld’s sobering documentary effort "A.D." at SMITH Magazine. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out, now is the time. The final chapter of the epic has been posted and, not surprisingly, it’s a thoughtful, candid and gripping finale to many months of labor by Neufeld. I talked to Neufeld last year about the project. Here’s an excerpt from that article: The pen-and-ink drawings are clear, simple and so static in their muted colors that they suggest an airless calm — but the real-life events in those drawings pulse with tension, confusion and fear. “It’s an account of Hurricane Katrina by a small group of survivors,” artist Josh Neufeld said by phone recently, “but really, at its heart, it’s a story of loss and how we […]