(Our first two-parter! bpNichol continued …)
There’s so much more to blow your mind about the poetry comics of bpNichol.
Nichol brought his obsession with language and words to his comics and drawing. One of the restraints of comics Nichol explored was frames (see AHOPC #12). Drawing also gave him a way to make words tangible for the reader. He’s quoted in the introduction for bpNichol Comics (Talonbooks, 2002): “how can the poet reach out and touch you physically as say the sculptor does by caressing you with objects you caress?”
To that end, he found ways to incorporate letters, the alphabet, and words into his drawings and comics – blurring the line between pictures and words. Here are examples of Nichol’s use of letters/lettering in his art.
I admire the wit and the humor in these poems. A comic written with just words and a horizon line. Is the Z missing or is the Z sleeping? The erasure of the word frog until we’re left questioning (did we even see a frog?). The witty homage to Basho’s famous haiku (old pond / a frog jumps in / splash!) where you can also see the motion.
bpNichol makes us think about poetry and comics differently. He adeptly used the two to create something new. Fusing words and pictures, he found ways to transcend both.
Recommended: Lots more to explore in the bpNichol Archives.
Warning: This incomplete history maps my journey as a poet learning about comics and doesn’t follow a strict chronological order.
Reblogged this on The Wombwell Rainbow.