From Steve almond’s review of Building Stories • “I have now spent a week in sloppy communion with Building Stories and am ready to declare it one of the most important pieces of art I have ever experienced. I also sort of want to kill myself.”
Chris Ware on building stories • “The whole book is supposed to be a dream object…. I wanted the box to be a beautiful thing and to have that promise to it that a gift has on Christmas morning.”
CHRIS WARE ON BUILDING STORIES • I didn't want it to have a detective novel quality to it. I didn't want there to be a plot like where was that missing note placed. I don't want it to be like that. I wanted it to be very bland or to seem bland or to seem ordinary even though there’s necessarily not super ordinary things that happen in it. There are larger painful questions hopefully but there’s not like a plot, there’s not some secret story arc to be discovered or anything like that.
A theme emerges? • "Lately, I've been thinking a lot about the end of the world.” • "At that point I was starting to get acquainted with the unfairness of life and learning it was better not to expect anything rather than set yourself up for disappointment.” • "What did I do to make him hate me so much?” • "Isn't there anyone who will be able to tolerate my disgusting, bloated body?” • "The feeling of failure lingered all day, prodding me into digging out all my old notebooks and pointedly rediscovering what a terrible writer I was, how stupid and trite my ideas were, and, really, what a bad artist I was, as well. ... I'd never had any talent ... why had my teachers ever encouraged me?"
Format • Building Stories contains 14 comics: • 4 newspaperlikebroadsheetts • 3 magazines • ‘2 pamphlets • 2 standalone strips • 1four-panel storyboard • 1hardbound book • 1 storybook in the format of the Little Golden Books series
Host of Fear No ART, ElysabethAlfano, sits down with acclaimed graphic novelist, Chris Ware, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=W4MOYCvgEmw.
Your job today • For the next hour, I’d like you to roll your sleeves up, munch on treats, and work collaboratively to gain a foothold into Ware’s Building Stories. • Use everything you’ve learned this semester so far to come up with some insights. • We’ll then get back together as a class and share what we’ve learned.