John Wilcock has been the subject of an ongoing comic book biography here on Boing Boing. Scott Marshall and I have been working on the comic since 2012, or so, and it's been a nice goal to complete the book in John's lifetime. John lived many lives almost simultaneously, and it's been a massive research project effort to connect his experiences into one cohesive timeline. It's with some regret that while the book will likely complete in 2019, John passed away last night at the age of 91. But what a terrific life.
As chronicled in the comic, much of today's subculture (and news culture, and drug culture, and positive-minded sex culture, and the syndication nature of the Internet) was largely influenced by John's interest in connecting like minds in the 1950s and 1960s. He cofounded The Village Voice, established the Underground Press Syndicate, and later worked with Andy Warhol to develop Interview.
John was also a travel writer for both The New York Times and Frommer's, and published his own underground paper, Other Scenes, which is an unheralded masterpiece of weird optics, amazing design, and challenging subjects. (Part of the goal of the comic book biography is to highlight Other Scenes, which you'll see here on Boing Boing in 2019.)
As we celebrate John's accomplished life, here's a few comics from the biography:
Editing Norman Mailer
Ladies and Gentlemen, Lenny Bruce! (and Part Two)
Timothy Leary's First Night on Hallucinogens
Thelonious Monk's Heroin Arrest
The History of ECHO, The Magazine You Play on Your Phonograph
Four Significant Counterculture Events
With love to John and his life, Ethan Persoff (with Scott Marshall)
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