Spiva Center for the Arts Joplin MO Logo


Spiva Center for the Arts Joplin MO


 January 5 – March 10, 2018

Paper Vernacular: Stories by Regional Cartoonists

Sponsored by the John and Joy Cragin Family

The exhibit highlights comics that are reflective of or influenced by the Midwest area in which the artists live. To be clear, this is NOT Gotham City. No superheroes are coming to save the day. This is real life, smack dab in the middle of the US of A. Comics is a deeply intimate art form that builds a personal connections between viewer and artist. The artist presents a unique world to the reader, whose imagination expands it beyond the page. This merger of the artwork with the reader’s perspective creates a singular reading experience, wherein the audience plays an active role. An artist’s surroundings inevitably weaves itself into the work. Elements of a storyteller’s environment may surface in the setting, cadence of dialogue, or customs presented in the narrative. Similarly, readers will view a story through the lens of their own experiences of place and culture. In Paper Vernacular: Stories by Regional Cartoonists, the Midwestern artists Emi Gennis, Cole Closser, and Joshua Cotter invite artists to engage with work that has been influenced by the places we call home.


“Celebrate the creative experience – be a community catalyst.”

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