Blank Slate Books

Anarchy versus Occultery: Darryl Cunningham

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frank and drac2 Anarchy versus Occultery: Darryl Cunningham

Darryl Cunningham, author of Psychiatric Tales and Uncle Bob Adventures, presents that time-honoured pairing of Frankenstein’s monster and Dracula. You’d always wondered why they seem to be together so much when they are so very different. Now the source of their unlikely affinity is revealed, intuited by Darryl with his usual clarity. Speaking of which, if you are in London on Monday night, Foyles bookshop is the place to be. Darryl will be in conversation with Danny Dorling, Halford Mackinder Professor of Geography and author of Inequality And The 1% (Verso Books). They will be discussing Darryl’s new book, Supercrash: How To Hijack The Global Economy (Myriad Editions) – a study of the origins of the 2008 financial crash and the philosophy that caused it to happen.

Just as Psychiatric Tales explained mental illness in a way anyone could understand, Supercrash examines the American New Right and the influential libertarian Ayn Rand,  and unravels the thinking that led to the global financial collapse to show why it happened and how it could happen again.  The event is at The Auditorium at Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Road. Tickets are £8 and you can book tickets here

 

Anarchy versus Occultery: Jonathan Edwards

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halloweenJE Anarchy versus Occultery: Jonathan Edwards

Jonathan Edwards, one half of the creative duo that is Felt Mistress, pens this cautionary note. I have had visions of the same thing happening to me where toffee apples are concerned, so I can sympathise. It’s probably just a minor inconvenience for the undead and new fangs will have sprouted by next moonrise, but it’s gotta smart. Bite carefully!

Anarchy versus Occultery: Simon Gane

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Simon Gane Anarcho Witch Anarchy versus Occultery: Simon Gane

Simon Gane, magnificent draftsman of monsters, models and monumental French scenery, presents us with a beautifully rendered puzzle. This lady is a witch all right, but her pumpkin is a bomb! So is that a vote for Hallowe’en or a tick in the Bonfire Night box? Simon says: stupid question. See that ‘A’ on her hat? Anarchists reject your simplistic definitions, they just like to blow things up! BOOM!

Anarchy versus Occultery: Kate Brown

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kate brown occulty 682x1024 Anarchy versus Occultery: Kate Brown

 Kate Brown, contributor to Nelson and author of Fish and Chocolate has drawn this picture of her innermost feelings on the issue of Hallowe’en vs Bonfire Night. There is NO DOUBT about which side she is on. In Kate’s own words: WEEN WEEN WEEN! Or maybe she just doesn’t know how to spell ‘wine’? Hmmm… perhaps it’s not so simple after all. More clues might be had at Kate’s website - good luck finding out!

Anarchy versus Occultery: Joe Decie

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joe decie bonfire2 Anarchy versus Occultery: Joe Decie

 

Joe Decie, author of The Listening Agent and The Accidental Salad, has gazed unblinking into the eyes of true terror.  Let him show you. And when you’re finished looking, come back later for another entry in this BSB cavalcade of chills and thrills!

Anarchy versus Occultery: Jim Medway

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Novembersmall Anarchy versus Occultery: Jim Medway

Cherylbacca - Love, by Jim Medway

Jim Medway, author of BSBs Playing Out, brings us this vision of hirsute happiness playing with fireworks. Her name’s Cherylbacca, and she sprang to life at The Lakes last weekend during some fevered drawing sessions with kids and their parents. She’s already so loved that she’s going to feature in her own calendar for 2015. We’ll let you know when it’s available. We also recommend you keep an eye on Jim’s site here.

 

 

Anarchy versus Occultery – Pick a side!

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It’s that time of year again. The shops are filled with pumpkin-witchy-ghosty sweets and party accessories, everyone’s got their Hallowe’en names on their social media profiles and they all have their costumes planned for those parties already. As if that wasn’t enough for one week, just five days later it’s time to remember remember the fifth of November… There’s the question of where you’re going to be on Bonfire Night and whether you’re going to buy your own fireworks or go to a show, are there going to be sparklers, did anybody remember to lock the pets in the house?

Hard to decide which event is more fun. OR… IS IT? If you could only go out on one of the two nights, which would it be? We asked all our friends to make a choice and tell us who (or maybe what) holds the keys to their festive hearts: the mysterious, greasepainty, occult thrills of All Hallows Eve ? Or the gunpowdery, blazing pyres, rocket-and-Catherine-Wheel hotness that is Bonfire Night?

Over the next two weeks we’re running the answers every day in the form of pictures by Blank Slate’s creative friends that will show and tell which side they’re on. Stop by and see who’s holding the torch next. First up: a furry-faced fan of fires!

Line Hoven at the British Library

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Line Hoven, author of Love looks Away, made a trip from her home in Hamburg to London last week to be part of European Literature Night at the British Library. What’s that. you ask? ELN is, and we quote, an “annual literary showcase bringing the most interesting writers of contemporary European literature to the UK.” 28 European Cultural Institutes and embassies are involved in putting it together, with lots of arts organisations, and the European Commission Representation in the UK which promotes European literature of all genres in English translation.

It’s been going for six years but this year for the first time, European Literature Night extended to looking at comics, as part of the huge Comics Unmasked: Art and Anarchy in the UK exhibition currently underway at The British Library for the next three months to 19th August.

Four graphic novelists were invited to read from and talk about their work:  Line Hoven (Germany), Lucie Lomova (Czech Republic), Max (Spain) and Judith Vanistendael (Belgium/Flanders).

In front of a completely packed room, Paul Gravett interviewed the four authors, they read extracts and then each of them did a quick drawing on the nearby table, projected on a large screen for us all to gaze at.

Here’s Line and Paul reading aloud a section from Love Looks Away. Paul helped out by doing the men’s voices.

linepaulread Line Hoven at the British Library

Line chose to do a tiny demonstration of her painstaking scraperboard style, which is even more impressive when you can see just how long it takes to turn even a tiny one centimetre area of black scraperboard into white space with the pointy instruments she uses.

linedraw1 Line Hoven at the British Library

Apparently you can use just about anything that makes a mark, from rusty nails to fingertips or hairpins, but Line has a few more conventional tools that she likes to use.

linedraw21 Line Hoven at the British Library

Love Looks Away took Line four years to make. She says she has got a little bit faster since then – it was her first book and she was figuring a lot of things out – but making books is still a slow process.

linedraw31 Line Hoven at the British Librarylinefaceclose Line Hoven at the British Library

One other problem is that scraperboard is getting harder to find, because hardly anyone makes it anymore. Line gets hers from a variety of places but her stocks are running low.

linedraw41 Line Hoven at the British Library

If anyone out there has the recipe for making your own, Line would love to know, she’s prepared to start her own production facility going. Get in touch and we’ll pass the details on and make an artist very happy. There’s nothing worse than running out of your favourite drawing materials.

dinner Line Hoven at the British Library

Line rounded off the evening with pizza alongside BSB’s Woodrow Phoenix and some of the other creators from the panel, Lucie Lomova and Max. Thanks to the British Library, Flanders House, and The Goethe Institute for bringing us Line, Lucie and Max – but especially Line!

Will Morris at the drawing board

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The Skinny magazine have just put up a short video interview with Will Morris, talking about drawing The Silver Darlings and demonstrating his enviable watercolour technique. Our BCA Award-winning champ was recently selected as “one of 40 contemporary Scottish storytellers whose work will define the next four decades of the nation’s culture”, in an article you can read here.

It’s a pretty impressive accolade for this talented BSB author and richly deserved.

Felt Mistress goes into Hiber-Nation

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front Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

Our Creature Couture stars, Louise Evans and Jonathan Edwards, never stop working. Currently showing at the Wales Millennium Centre in Cardiff between now and 5 January is an all-new exhibition of Felt Mistress magic, called Hiber-Nation.

nado Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

On two floors of the Wales Millennium Centre is an installation of new 3D felt, tweed and woollen creature pieces by Felt Mistress, plus the original drawings from which they were derived, in watercolour and pen & ink, by Jonathan Edwards. You can walk in and freely wander around the various creatures and pictures, sit in the foyer and gaze up at the magnificent queen, and then have a latte while you prepare for a face to face meeting with Felt Mistresses’ biggest creation yet, who awaits you next to one of the ground floor entrances – just follow the footprints…

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jont capture Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

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When you’ve finished cramming your eyes full of the intricate painting of Mr Edwards, it will be time for your other senses to take a turn and get interactive with a hug from a nine foot tall yeti. Who could resist? Just look at how happiness is filling that super talented artist Simon Gane!

ganehug Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

It’s Louise and Jonathan’s first show in their native Wales and it’s been a big hit. BBC Wales loved what they saw and the show also drew raves from Inkygoodness.

hug1 Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

It’s the perfect antidote to those winter blues. Dark days getting you down? We recommend a daytrip to smother your end-of-year ennui beneath the furry arms of a giant yeti. The welsh for “hug” is “cwtsh”. Editor Bridget Hannigan is making the most of her yeti cwtsh moment. Don’t you wish you could? You should!

hug2 Felt Mistress goes into Hiber Nation

Hiber-Nation ends on 5 January. Show details here.

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