09 July 2008

Wordless Books

Wood engravings, linocuts, and, copperplate engravings have all existed for centuries, but it wasn't until the early years of the 1900s that artists began to use them for creating book-length 'stories without words' which aspired to be the equivalent of novels. These illustrators were closely associated with the visual world of German expressionism, particularly that of Oskar Kokoshka and Ernst Kirchner. The two most prominent figures in this movement were Frans Masereel and Lynd Ward, though David Berona, in this thoughtful and well-informed work of homage to the genre also includes examples by Otto Nuckell, and the more recent Willam Gropper, the American Milt Gross, Giacomo Patri, and Laurence Hyde. He quotes the celebrated comic-book theorist Scott McCloud as observing that these woodcut stories were an important bridge between the nineteenth century and the modern day comic... Read more >>



dberona said...

Thanks for your kind words about my book and I'm glad that you enjoyed it.
David Berona

mantex said...

One thing which puzzled me – but I didn’t labour the point – was why so many of them worked in the same style, and why that style persisted into the middle of the century – as if they had not been influenced at all by the developments in graphic design and comic book illustration in the period 1920-1960.