The Realist: trenchant, beautifully surreal Israeli comics about a sweet and complicated existence
Asaf Hanuka is a celebrated Israeli cartoonist whose astonishing, surreal illustrations serve as counterpoint to sweet (sometimes too-sweet) depictions of his family life, his complicated existence as a member of a visible minority in Israel, the fear he and his family live with, and his own pleasures and secret shames -- a heady, confessional, autobiographical brew that has just been collected into The Realist: Plug and Play, the second volume of Hanuka's comics.
Hanuka is a Mizrahi Jew -- a member of an ethnic minority of Arab-passing, Middle-Eastern-descended, Jewish-identifying Jews who have a fraught relationship with the Israeli Euro-Ashkenazi majority and the other minority groups, such as the Iberian/North African Sephardim.
Married to a (rather long-suffering and good-humored) Ashkenazi woman, Hanuka is the father of two small children, whose high spirits, mischievous antics, and pure, innocent Id make up the bulk of the collection, a kind of Family-Circus-by-way-of-Art Spiegelman riff that almost always stays on right side of the sweet/treacly divide.
These serve as light counterpoint to the much heavier material about Israeli politics and living in a conflict zone, with the special complications of being mistaken for an Arab by enraged and Islamophobic Israelis in the midst of social unrest, occupation, rocket attacks and the stabbing intifada.
Running through this very broad emotional spectrum are Hanukah's astounding illustrations, beautiful, grotesque, surreal -- pitiless portraits of Hanukah himself, sentimental drawings of his family, pictures of his history as a student in France, of the minutae of his daily life. These are extraordinary and quite unlike anything else in the field, with a jovial palette and an often serious or even wrenching subject. Hanukah's literary storytelling is good and sometimes great, but his ability to tell tales with visuals -- especially the full-page, wordless spreads -- is unparalleled.
The Realist: Plug and Play [Asaf Hanukah/Archaia]
(Images ganked with thanks from CBR)
Drone filmmaker captures Children's Fairyland from the view of a flying fairy — and it's downright magical
There’s still magic in the world, as evidenced by this fairy’s-eye view of Children’s Fairyland, that charming 70-year-old storybook theme park in Oakland, California. You might remember that when I’m not blogging, I work with Fairyland. WELL… months before we were mandated to shelter in place, a local photographer, Stephen Loewinsohn, contacted our team at […]
We’ve been writing about Lea Redmond since 2009 here on Boing Boing. She’s just one of those kind of people who consistently makes neat things — a real Happy Mutant! Well, her latest creative venture is Home Sweet Home, an activity deck for kids (and the young at heart). It offers inspiring prompts for whimsical, […]
Listed at $159,900 this 1,075 square-foot home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is bland on the outside but features rooms with outer space, submarine, tropical island, and moonbase motifs. The owners put a lot of work into it!
Add Internet of Things to the shortlist of those actually benefiting from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. You might not realize it, but the organizing principle that is bringing more automation to the world is actually proving to be a major asset as human beings are forced to stay home and away from the […]
We’ve all had those nights where we’re working on a laptop or scrolling through our phone before glancing at the time to find it’s actually a lot later than we thought. Most nights, you’d be fast asleep or at least dead tired at midnight or 1 or 3 a.m. But after staring at a screen, […]
If you’re a fan of ABC’s entrepreneurial feeding frenzy “Shark Tank,” then you know complete buyout offers from the expert Sharks don’t happen all that often. But back in 2017, that’s exactly what happened when inventor Logan Riley debuted his instantly eye-catching creation the RokBlok to the agog Sharks. Part of the reason that happened […]