The Casual Optimist

Books, Design and Culture

September 15, 2017
by Dan
0 comments

Jeet Heer on Jack Kirby

At the New Republic, Jeet Heer looks back at the work of Jack Kirby, the cartoonist who shaped the Marvel Universe and remade popular culture:  The superhero stories Kirby created or inspired have dominated American comic books for nearly 75 … Continue reading

September 2, 2014
by Dan
1 Comment

The Art of Comics: Chris Ware

Cartoonist Chris Ware is interviewed by Canadian journalist Jeet Heer in the latest issue of The Paris Review as part of the magazine’s ongoing ‘The Art of Comics’ series. You can read a short excerpt online: It was the Peanuts … Continue reading

December 2, 2013
by Dan
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Françoise Mouly and the One-Image Narrative

R. Fiore reviews In Love With Art, Jeet Heer’s shory book on Françoise Mouly, for The Comics Journal: At this point is there any more important editor in periodical illustration than Françoise Mouly? With so many erstwhile venues for illustration … Continue reading

November 4, 2013
by Dan
3 Comments

Jeet Heer: In Love With Art and The Superhero Reader

At the Comics Reporter, Jeet Heer discusses his two recent books on comics, The Superhero Reader edited with Charles Hatfield and Kent Worcester, and In Love With Art: Françoise Mouly’s Adventures in Comics with Art Spiegelman, with Tom Spurgeon:  Strange to … Continue reading

September 13, 2013
by Dan
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Françoise Mouly: In Love With Art

Jeet Heer discusses the work Françoise Mouly and his new book, In Love With Art: Françoise Mouly’s Adventures in Comics with Art Spiegelman, with Dave Berry at The National Post: She’s open to the wider world in a way that was very … Continue reading

August 8, 2012
by Dan
2 Comments

Midweek Miscellany

A few remembrances of art critic Robert Hughes, author of The Shock of the New, Nothing If Not Critical and Things I Didn’t Know among others, who died earlier this week aged 74… Maria Bustillos for The Awl: “The Shock of … Continue reading

December 19, 2011
by Dan
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Jeet Heer on Tintin

Canadian cultural critic Jeet Heer had a great piece on Tintin in Saturday’s  Globe and Mail: Hergé belongs to the noble line of boys’ books and thrillers that includes Robert Louis Stevenson’s Treasure Island, John Buchan’s The 39 Steps, Rudyard Kipling’s … Continue reading

October 12, 2011
by Dan
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Midweek Miscellany

Art or Death — Art Spiegelman on books, comics and technology at Publishers Weekly: I would say that, in the future, the book will be reserved for things that function best as a book. So, if I need a textbook … Continue reading

February 12, 2010
by Dan
0 comments

Something for the Weekend

[A quick note about the poll: thanks to everyone who voted, left a comment or sent me note this week — I really appreciate it. The feedback has been great. I’m going to shut the poll down at midnight tonight, … Continue reading

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