MacArthur ‘Genius’ Cartoonist Ben Katchor Coming to KMAC

The Kentucky Museum of Art and Craft continues its exploration of the relationship between the printing press and the artist (PRESS: Artist & Machine, through June 1) with a lecture and workshop by MacArthur Foundation “Genius” Award-winning cartoonist and graphic novelist Ben Katchor on Sunday, April 27.

Tune in to Byline on Friday at 1 p.m. to hear WFPL’s Erin Keane speak with Katchor about comics, print, and the contemporary American city.

In his presentation “Halftone Printing in the Yiddish Press and Other Objects of Idol Worship,” Katchor will read from and project his own comics while discussing memories of his father, art history, technology, a haunting and strangely beautiful South American artifact and the Biblical declaration: “Thou shalt have no other gods before me.” The lecture begins at 1 p.m. and is open to the public. 

After a break, Katchor will teach a two-hour workshop on graphic narrative, which will include a series of exercises introducing principles of telling stories through text and image. The workshop, 3-5 p.m., is free and open to participants ages 16 and older. Registration is required

Katchor produces a monthly strip for Metropolis magazine and is the author of several comics collections, including “Cheap Novelties: The Pleasures of Urban Decay,” “The Jew of New York,” and “Julius Knipl: Real Estate Photographer.” His latest book, “Hand-Drying in America and Other Stories,” (Pantheon) was published in 2013. A past Guggenheim fellow, Katchor is an associate professor at Parsons, The New School for Design in New York City.

To get a taste of his presentation style, here’s Katchor’s 2009 TED Talk, “Comics of Bygone New York”:

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