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Sophie Crumb: Evolution of a Crazy Artist Hardcover – Bargain Price, November 15, 2010
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From Publishers Weekly
Sophie Crumb's slender body of published comics so far identifies her as an interesting--but still mostly promising--young cartoonist. Questions about this compilation of childhood and sketchbook drawings are both unavoidable and acknowledged. In their twin introductions, Sophie's parents (and co-editors) Robert and Aline Kominsky-Crumb position this book as something other than "Crumbsploitation," praising their daughter's artwork and suggesting that this chronological, lifelong sketchbook anthology constitutes a unique and fascinating document of personal and artistic development. The book satisfies somewhat on these counts. Sophie's earliest work includes very advanced preschool art, and she remains continuously prolific. However, to distance this work from her family background denies part of the reason for her early, sustained development and one of this book's major narrative threads: her relationship to the legacy of her celebrated parents. Their presence as media guides is evident in her early subjects (the Three Stooges, vintage cartoons). Later she leaves home to join a circus, study tattooing, and live with lowlifes in New York City. The true legacy of her parents' influence is her constant outpouring of uncensored, self-critical, and perceptive drawing. (Nov.) (c)
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Living underground comics legends R. Crumb and Aline Kominsky-Crumb were wise enough to save thousands of their daughter Sophie’s childhood drawings, which now form a chronicle of an artist’s development from toddler drawings to sketches from teen notebooks to the works of her twenties. While Sophie’s art does not exactly tell a story, a complex wash of emotions, heartaches, and triumphs can be ascertained. Even without a solid narrative, what is clearly conveyed is her creative childhood whimsy, her sense of displacement after moving from the U.S. to France, and her struggle to find an identity as a young artist. With brief introductions from each of her parents, short notes and captions from Sophie (also a tattoo artist), and a sense of empathy for others, a strong personal connection is forged with readers in this truly unique volume. --Tina Coleman