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The Comics of Chris Ware$
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David M. Ball and Martha B. Kuhlman

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9781604734423

Published to University Press of Mississippi: March 2014

DOI: 10.14325/mississippi/9781604734423.001.0001

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In the Comics Workshop: Chris Ware and the Oubapo

In the Comics Workshop: Chris Ware and the Oubapo

(p.78) In the Comics Workshop: Chris Ware and the Oubapo
The Comics of Chris Ware

Martha B. KuhlMan

University Press of Mississippi

This chapter examines Chris Ware’s comics from a perspective informed by French comics, with emphasis on an experimental collective known as Oubapo. It shows how, for both Ware and Oubapo, the concept of the workshop or factory becomes a key trope as they self-consciously create an avant-garde form of comics that embraces experimentation in the medium and about the medium. To demonstrate how this formal experimentation offers another point of entry into the labyrinth of Ware’s graphic narratives, the chapter looks at parallels between his work in The ACME Novelty Library series, Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth, and Oubapo works. It also considers how the works of Ware and a number of French artists share an ironic edge and specifically critique mass-manufactured comics and consumerism.

Keywords:   comics, Chris Ware, French comics, Oubapo, workshop, factory, graphic narratives, ACME Novelty Library, Jimmy Corrigan, consumerism

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