The Spirit World by Conor Stechschulte

January 19, 2009

The Spirit World’s back cover

I keep coming back to this comic, a hand-printed work that grows in the mind long after you’ve read it.  All it is is a few drawings of trees with a surprise between.  But the pace and the point-of-view recall Tarkovsky or Tarr.  A feat, considering comics have very little to say over how fast we read them.

And it’s very American, a transcendental probe into nature’s nature.

Since American alt-comics especially have been a largely urban affair (Seattle, Chicago, New York), the few that look– really look– at nature stand out.  John Porcellino most notably, but Conor Stechschulte certainly has an eye for it.  His collective, Closed Caption Comics, is in Baltimore; maybe they get out on the weekends in a canoe or something.

A page from the comic The Spirit World

(I have a short, short piece on The Spirit World and its sequel in an upcoming TCJ.)

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