The 229th meeting of the NY Comics & Picture-story Symposium will be held on Tuesday,  Nov. 13, 2018 at 7pm at The New School, Room A404, 66 West 12th Street. Free and open to the public.

Jason Lutes on Berlin, 20 years in the making

Celebrated cartoonist Jason Lutes speaks about completing his two-decade-long project Berlin; a sweeping graphic novel masterpiece that charts Berlin through the rise of Nazism.

Berlin is an intricate look at the fall of the Weimar Republic through the eyes of its citizens, weaving a wide cast of characters’ lives into the larger fabric of a city slowly ripping apart. The city itself is the central protagonist in this historical fiction. Lavish salons, crumbling sidewalks, dusty attics, and train stations: all these places come alive in Lutes’ masterful hand. Weimar Berlin was the world’s metropolis, where intellectualism, creativity, and sensuous liberal values thrived, and Lutes maps its tragic, inevitable decline. Devastatingly relevant and beautifully told, Berlin is one of the great epics of the comics medium.

A graduate of the Rhode Island School of Design, cartoonist Jason Lutes became the assistant art director of Fantagraphics Books in 1991. His “big break” came in 1993, when he began drawing a weekly comics page called “Jar of Fools” for The Stranger, Seattle’s alternative paper. By 1995 he had become the paper’s art director, but upon collecting and self-publishing Jar of Fools in 1996, he left The Stranger and made the leap to becoming a full-time cartoonist. Lutes then began working on his magnum opus Berlin; a historical fiction graphic novel set in the twilight years of the Weimar Republic. Lutes currently lives in Vermont with his partner and two children, where he teaches comics at the Center for Cartoon Studies.