PaperCity Magazine

PaperCity Dallas April 2024

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and huge." $49.99, at, Another unforgettable book is Whose Dog Are You? Antique Dog Collars, Canes and Collectibles (Lake Emma Press) by noted Dallas folk art collector and devoted dog lover Ron Gard and his daughter, Christie Gard, who served as a creative director. In these pages, canines pose jauntily in antique dog collars from the 16th century onward, including the Gards' own rescue pups, all impeccably captured by Montana-based photographer Jeff Moore. Ron's golden retriever, Lady, regally graces the cover in a late-18th- century brass and steel European dog collar. Rounding out the volume are distinctly carved works of art, from pens and canes to powder flasks and knives. Also featured is Dallas' own Oak Cliff outsider artist Isaac Smith (1944-2016) and his toothy rendition of an English bulldog. Alan Fausel, curator of The American Kennel Club Museum of the Dog, New York City, contributes the foreword to this lavish 259-page volume. $85; book signing Thursday, April 18, 5 to 8 pm at Snider Plaza Antiques; other retailers Interabang Books, Talulah & HESS, Catherine D. Anspon Frank Johnson, Secret Pioneer of American Comics Volume 1 (Fantagraphics), edited by Dallas' own Chris Byrne and Whitney Biennial-exhibited artist Keith Mayerson, pulls back the curtain on an unknown genius of America's early comics, Frank Johnson (1912-1979), whose previously unpublished 2,300-page notebooks are owned by Dallas collectors Brett and Lester Levy Jr., on long- term loan to Columbia University Libraries, NYC. Like another late Chicago outsider talent, Henry Darger, Johnson is generating attention in high-art circles. His comic strips were praised for their "robust penciling and a cumulative air of obsession" by New York Times critic Roberta Smith when 25 of Johnson's notebooks from Wally's Gang (1928-1949) and The Bowser Boys (1946- 1950) were exhibited in 2017 at New York's Outsider Art Fair. Byrne and Mayerson's resurrection of Johnson's magnum opuses has been touted as one of the most important graphic novels of this spring by New York Times Book Review. Times reporter Sam Thielman writes of Johnson's book, which features 604 pages plucked from his notebooks, "in this hefty omnibus, tidbits of a bygone way of life accumulate into something sad and strange Comics +Canines: Two Art Books to Acquire Now Among the season's most unique art volumes are two recent releases by Dallas authors, each one a worthy addition to any art library. Frank Johnson, Secret Pioneer of American Comics Volume 1 (Fantagraphics), edited by Chris Byrne and Keith Mayerson.

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