This week on the blog, we’re featuring George A. Walker in honour of the launch of his latest book of wood engravings, Trudeau: La Vie en Rose. (Don’t forget to RSVP on Facebook—we’d love to see you there!)
Who is George A. Walker?
- A Toronto-based artist, educator and publishing professional
- Has been publishing through his private press since 1984
- Has run printmaking classes at OCAD U since 1985
- Was elected to the Royal Canadian Academy of Arts in 2002
- Has been shortlisted for the ForeWord Magazine Book of the Year Awards / IndieFab Awards, the Independent Publisher (IPPY) awards, the Alcuin Society Awards for Excellence in Book Design in Canada and the Doug Wright Awards. The Wordless Leonard Cohen Songbook won the 2015 Alcuin Award for best limited edition.
What has he worked on?
- Two collections of wordless novels (Written in Wood and Graphic Witness) and one guide to the art of wood engraving (The Woodcut Artist’s Handbook) with Firefly Books
- Several collaborations with Neil Gaiman through Biting Dog Press
- With the Porcupine’s Quill:
- Trudeau: La Vie en Rose: a retrospective of an iconic Canadian politician
- The Wordless Leonard Cohen Songbook: a silent narrative of the life of a beloved singer-songwriter
- The Life and Times of Conrad Black: presenting in black and white the life of a media magnate who lived his live in shades of grey
- The Mysterious Death of Tom Thomson: Doug Wright Award shortlisted narrative in pictures, offering one possible interpretation of the unsolved death of a famous Canadian painter
- Book of Hours: an homage to the routine daily lives ripped apart by 9/11
- Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland: illustrated edition of Lewis Carroll’s beloved classic
- A Is for Alice: an alphabet of 26 images from the limited editions of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland and Through the Looking-Glass
- Images from the Neocerebellum: a visual dream diary and IPPY Awards runner-up
- The Inverted Line: Walker’s first collection with PQL
What are people saying about him?
- `The delicacy and intelligence of George Walker’s print-making seems to have come to us from a bygone age. Fortunately, we have George with us now.’ — Neil Gaiman, author of The Sandman
- `The Wordless Leonard Cohen Songbook demands close and careful viewing. In this, it is like cinema, or the photographic work of a Richard Avedon or Diane Arbus. Each image is full, suggestive and rich in context and style.’ —Norman Ravvin, The Canadian Jewish News
- `By eschewing words, Walker’s woodcuts are allowed to stand as simple and powerful gestures to a life story that any amount of words would be unable to tell in any case.’ —Jeremy Luke Hill
- `The simplicity of the woodblock medium can make the narrative difficult to follow, but this turns out to be Walker’s great strength. He challenges his reader with a poetic ambiguity that makes for an active, rewarding read.’ —Maisonneuve
- `George Walker is one of the most unusual wood engravers in the country, and works in a distinctly contemporary idiom. Using a dentist’s drill, he routs out deep grooves which create bold graphic white lines, providing a brilliant black-white contrast.’ —Patricia Ainslie, Glenbow Museum
What should I read next?
Other books in the Wordless Novels series:
- Steven McCabe’s Never More Together: a dystopian commentary on truth, complicity and social consciousness
- Megan Speers’s Wanderlust: a look at the punk counterculture in 1990s Sault Ste. Marie
- Marta Chudolinksa’s Back + Forth: a tale of belonging, assimilation, distance … and time and space
- Stefan Berg’s Let That Bad Air Out: a wordless tribute to the live of jazz pioneer Buddy Bolden
Where can I find more information about George A. Walker?