Yale University Press, Hardcover, 9780300184402, 120pp.
Publication Date: May 28, 2013
Born to working-class parents in a small town in Italy, and reared in Chicago, Ivan Brunetti (b. 1967) was drawn to cartoons and comic strips from an early age. Finding inspiration in "Spider-Man "and "Peanuts," he began crafting his own stories and gradually developed a unique style that he applied to imaginative, sometimes shocking subjects. The dark humor of his graphic novels earned him a cult following, yet his illustrations have had broad appeal. Now recognized as an award-winning cartoonist and illustrator, Brunetti has published his work in the "New Yorker," the "New York Times Magazine," and "McSweeney's," among others.
This eye-popping illustrated autobiography by Brunetti traces his artistic trajectory and output, from youthful doodles to his latest cover illustrations and comic strips. "Aesthetics: A Memoir" unearths a trove of previously unpublished materials, including working drawings, sketches for cartoons, book covers, personal photographs, and items from the artist's collection of toys and handmade objects. In an introductory essay and captions, Brunetti explains in a voice that is as quirky, smart, and clear as his drawings his creative process and aesthetic sensibility. This overarching retrospective conveys Brunetti's philosophy of life and cartooning through his keen words and unforgettable images.
“A handsomely designed encapsulation of the artistic life of a unique American illustrator . . . essential for fans but fascinating for those new to Brunetti’s work as well.” —Kirkus Reviews
"Indispensable . . . superbly designed . . . an appropriately indefinable book for an artist whose distinct career phases defy convention."—Jeffrey O. Gustafson, The Comic Pusher
-Jeffrey O. Gustafson
"[A] handsome collection . . . the curation and captions here might make this his most revealing work yet . . . [an] impressive volume."—Jake Austin, Chicago Tribune