Tom talks to Nick Bertozzi about his two new books, “The Salon” and “Houdini,” and also provides what must be one of the worst pictures of the artist in question I’ve ever seen. I mean really unflattering. Anyway:
SPURGEON: There’s a fantastic element to The Salon. What made you decide to use that device rather than stick to a more mundane, historical approach?
BERTOZZI: I thought it might be more interesting visually. [laughs] I thought there’d be more opportunities for hi-jinks and monkeyshines. One idea I had going into The Salon since I was doing it on-line was that each page had to be like [Jack] Kirby. You look at a Kirby page, he’s either invented something, there’s a fistfight or he’s drawn a city underneath the moon or something like that. On every page. I imagine him picking up a page every time he’s finished penciling it and he looks at it, and thinks, “There’s the interesting thing on this page.” And then he goes onto the next. That was my impetus for The Salon, making it kind of fantastical, where there’s these crazy sequences where somebody’s falling through space. Or another crazy sequence where somebody’s inside a famous painting.
Revealing news: Bertozzi will be doing a book with Harvey Pekar about Lenny Bruce. sounds intriguing.