RSS Feed

Facebook

Twitter

THE BLOG AT THE CROSSROADS


Talk with Nye Right at Apple Store Regent Street, London

Posted: February 7, 2012

A week on Thursday, February 16th, from 7-8pm upstairs at the Regent Street Apple Store, near Oxford Circus in London, I’ll be in conversation with Nye (full name Aneurin) Wright, discussing his remarkable graphic memoir about coping with his dying father during his final months, Things to Do in a Retirement Home Trailer Park from Myriad Editions. The event is free, you just need to RSVP to editorial[at]myriadeditions.com

To give you a flavour, here’s my early review from my Previews article in December - hope to see some of you there:
I first met American-born, Brighton-based Nye Wright at last summer’s Hypercomics exhibition in London and discovered he was self-publishing this extraordinary anthropomorphic memoir about him and his father Neil. Now complete and issued as a handsome hardback by enterprising British publishers Myriad, it’s worth noting that the book’s title comes with an asterisked subtitle: ‘...When You’re 29 and Unemployed.” This of course refers to the author Nye, who not only portrays himself as a big, muscular, healthy, two-horned bull, but one that comes in cobalt blue (the same skin-tone as his rhino father). In fact, only some of the characters here are animals - owls bears, lizards - or in the case of Nye’s roommate Miguel, a reddish-brown chihuahua. The rest, particularly the women, remain human. Dividing the story into three parts, ‘Arriving’, ‘Settling In’, and ‘Moving On’, Wright offers 31 different activities ranging from pill-counting, learning about hospice and caretaking to, of course, drawing, which he does especially well, limiting his colour scheme to just blues and dark oranges with shades of grey. Myriad have posted some sample pages on their website.

The story moves back and forward through the years, charting the course of Neil Wright’s smoking and emphysema - described by one doctor as “like a train going over a cliff.” There’s wit as well as pathos here, for example when Nye is perturbed by being asked to give his father an enema, and his Dad responds: “You know what your Mother and I learned when you and your sister were born?” “That you can do anything as long as you breath through your mouth.” The sheer flexibility of comics allows Nye Wright to portray the impossible and visualise states of mind. So in one chapter, Nye Wright can fantasise about becoming a vengeance-driven Dark Knight-style superhero or ‘Authorial Persona’, seeking revenge on the literally capitalist pigs of the tobacco corporations in “the sleepy hamlet of Carcinogenia”. The ending, his father’s death, cannot come as a surprise but the route the author takes us on to get there is constantly unpredictable and compelling. At 306 pages, the result is a strikingly unusual and daringly inventive addition to the arena of autobiographical, reconciliatory comics by siblings about their sometimes difficult parents, and to the burgeoning field of ‘graphic medicine’ exploring in both frank and funny terms the real, complex impact of illness and death on the the whole family.

Read The Blog At The Crossroads here.

My Books

Comics Unmasked by Paul Gravett and John Harris Dunning from The British Library

Newsletter

Mailing list sign-up:


Comica Events

Explore Worlds of Comics

View Tag Cloud