An Evening with SethTuesday Apr 30 2019 7:00 pm, Winnipeg, Grant Park in the Atrium
Join acclaimed cartoonist Seth for a discussion and book signing to launch Clyde Fans, his highly-anticipated masterpiece. Clyde Fans follows Abe and Simon Matchcard, two brothers whose lives are defined by their doomed family business, selling oscillating fans in a world switching to air conditioning. Seth’s incisive storytelling and gorgeous urban landscapes are showcased in this epic yet intimate time capsule of the mid-century capitalist dream.
Seth is a cartoonist, illustrator, and book designer. He has published a dozen graphic novels with Drawn & Quarterly, including George Sprott, It’s A Good Life, If You Don’t Weaken, and Wimbledon Green. His comics have also appeared in the New York Times Magazine, Best American Comics, and McSweeneys Quarterly. His illustrations have appeared in numerous publications including on the cover of the New Yorker. He is Lemony Snicket’s partner for the series All the Wrong Questions.
In 2014 he was the subject of a National Film Board documentary entitled Seth’s Dominion. Seth lives in Guelph with his wife Tania and two cats in a house he has named Inkwell’s End.
Host Candida Rifkind, Associate Professor in the Department of English at the University of Winnipeg, specializes in alternative comics, graphic novels, and Canadian literature. She is co-editor of Canadian Graphic: Picturing Life Narratives (Wilfrid Laurier University Press, 2016) and the forthcoming Documenting Trauma: Traumatic Pasts, Embodied Histories, and Graphic Reportage (Palgrave, 2020). She is incoming President of the Comics Studies Society and co-curator of the Architecture and Comics: Canadian Cartoonists and the City exhibit opening May 4th at the Winnipeg Architecture Foundation (featuring work by Seth).
- by SETH
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Reader Reward Price: $58.46
"Open Clyde Fans and let Seth take you into his time machine. There's no room for nostalgia in Seth's vision. The past is as sharp and painful as the present. In fact, the past is the present, conjured in words and pictures, existing in the spaces between what's said and unsaid, what's seen and unseen... In the end, as we close the pages on Simon and Abe, we might feel -- even for just a moment -- that we finally know what time looks like."--Brian Selznick, New York Times Book Review
A masterful work about a failing family business and the ensuing erosion of sibling relations and one's sanity
Twenty years in the making, Clyde Fans peels back the optimism of mid-twentieth century capitalism. The legendary Canadian cartoonist Seth lovingly shows the rituals, hopes, and delusions of a middle class that has long ceased to exist in North America--garrulous men in wool suits extolling the virtues of their wares to taciturn shopkeepers with an eye on the door. Much like the myth of an ever-growing economy, the Clyde Fans family unit is a fraud--the patriarch has abandoned the business to mismatched sons, one who strives to keep the business afloat and the other who retreats into the arms of the remaining parent.
Abe and Simon Matchcard are brothers, the second generation struggling to save their archaic family business of selling oscillating fans in a world switching to air-conditioning. At the center of Clyde Fans's center is Simon, who flirts with becoming a salesman as a last-ditch effort to leave the protective walls of the family home but is ultimately unable to escape Abe's critical voice in his head. As the business crumbles, so does any remaining relationship between the brothers, both of whom choose very different life paths but still end up utterly unhappy.
Seth's intimate storytelling and gorgeous art allow urban landscapes and detailed period objects to tell their own stories as the brothers struggle to keep from suffocating in an airless city home. An epic time capsule of a story line that begs rereading.