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  • By Lawrence Burton
    Bagnall doesn't really do strip cartoons so much as invoke details of times past, specifically of an England which will be familiar to anyone who grew up in the sixties or seventies. However, this is some way removed from Stewart Maconie chuckling over Spangles and the Bay City Rollers, or any Harry Enfield pastiche of a public information film. The nostalgia industry tends to focus on that which most people remember without prompts, and so our punk documentary - for arbitrary example - will be about the Sex Pistols rather than Eater, the Prats, and the Bears, despite that anything looming so large as to remain in the memory has usually become its own discreet phenomenon and as such can no longer quite be considered part of the general texture. John Bagnall's excavations, on the other hand, are all about the texture, the background noise we barely even noticed at the time, let alone ever had a chance to properly forget. His style is particularly well suited to the task, stark and... More > simple lines tracing solid forms without strongly resembling anything which has gone before, thus allowing for these historical examinations to unfold without unnecessary caricature or kitschy nostalgia clogging up the signal. There's something very haunting in these tales, or at least these anecdotes of subjects so small and lacking in quantifiable moment that I'm not sure they could be told by any better means than they are here. The silent panels showing the new town centre, or the trades which might be pursued by dexterous young men seem particularly affecting, unburdened by any editorial implication of a better, simpler world gone by, serving simply as an affectionate record of that which should be preserved if only for poetic reasons. This really is a beautiful piece of work.< Less
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Product Details

First Edition
John Bagnall
26 November 2013
Saddle-stitch Paperback
Interior Ink
Black & white
0.19 kg
Dimensions (centimetres)
20.98 wide x 29.69 tall
Product ID
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