Wednesday, January 27, 2010

'Found' Abstract Comic

found here, the tumbltr site didn't provide any information about where the images are from, who made them.


  1. The last five are from the handy-dandy Dover Background Patterns, Textures and Tints collection for artists and designers (presented by Clarence P. Hornung). I suspect the others are from a similar resource (Deco edition?).

  2. Personally I feel only the first three are abstract comics. But all are easily gorgeous. I am really blown away by the first two images. These are so bold and commanding, the play between geometry and free-form is outstanding.

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  4. Marcus - thanks for clarifying the origin of some of the images. Continuing along that thought of yours I can see the first three images as drawings from an architectural pattern book.

    Aaron - can't really argue with that. I do agree
    the first two are marvellous.

    Still I am interested in thinking how the last five might be considered abstract comics.

  5. These are all amazing... I'm totally blown away by the first three.

    I can see how the last five could be considered worthy images themselves, but there's no narrative there, either in each individual image or between eachother -- so I couldn't consider them as abstract comics.

  6. It is interesting to me that there seems to be some consensus that the last 5 cannot be considered comics and the key reason given is that "there's no narrative there, either in each individual image or between eachother -- so I couldn't consider them as abstract comics."

    Now, I find it strange that the lack of narrative is being used to say something is NOT an abstract comic, when the drift toward abstraction often involves a rejection of narrative and representation (which are different, but connected concepts).

    Image 7 for instance can clearly be read as an abstract comic to me (in fact - I really like it as a comic - when I simply 'look' at it without reading it as a comic it is uninteresting to me in many ways, but when I reinvestigate it through the lens of comics it becomes VERY interesting). Actually, Image 7 reminds me of Tony Conrad's work in cinema and music (but as a comic - it looks nothing like his work, but the feeling of it reminds me of Tony Conrad, or any ultra minimalist music like Surface of the Earth or Birchville Cat Motel, for instance).

    I am also interested in the notion of the one panel gag comic. If such a thing exists, why not the one panel abstract comic?? This, of course, will take it very close to painting or abstract image making in general making it hard to tell the difference between a Bridget Riley painting and an abstract comic. But I wonder if this is such a bad thing?

    Now, I understand that traditionally these would not be defined as comics. But traditionally abstract comics have not been defined as comics (as such) either. At the very least they were not talked about. So, why stick to a traditional definition when it comes to these??

    Just some thoughts. At the end of the day I do totally see why people don't see the last 5 as comics (apart from Image 7 which seems obvious to me in terms of its repetition and minimalism - it reminds me of Draw comic) but I am interested in knowing what happens to them when we do read them as comics. Who cares if we should or not, because it won't hurt anyone to do so. If we accept Draw's proposition that these can be called comics what new information is produced by them??

    For instance, perhaps each is a frame in a comic? Hence, images 4-8 make up a comic together?? I dunno - it just seems to me that the question 'Is this an abstract comic?' is uninteresting and will lead to the same answers every time. But to ask 'How can these images function as comics?' seems to be more in line with what Draw is asking.

    Any thoughts?

  7. Al of these images are pages from Dover collections. The first ones are all from 'Art Deco Spot Illustrations and Motifs.'

  8. Starkroth - hey thanks for source.


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