Thursday, December 10, 2009


"Borges by Bushmiller" by Bob Rini  

The Friends of the Nib show opened December 3 at Howard House, and will be up for the rest of the month. We opened on First Thursday, when art lovers stroll between galleries examining paintings and drawings and scupltures--his time they got an eyeful, crowding around our strange, eye-popping artwork. The place was buzzing as soon as they opened the doors. We were there, drawing live. Above it all, like a nightmare angel, the FOTN mascot flew, a stylized squid holding two dip pens (a "nib" is the metal point of such a pen) designed by Nibster Jim Woodring. The banner flew proudly this evening!

First Thursday at Howard House

Who--or what--is the Friends of the Nib? We're a weird crew. Our work isn't traditional mainstream art by any means--our various backgrounds include cartooning and illustration as well as fine art, so the work isn't tepid wallflower material but more sanguine, offbeat, punk, underground, hard to pin down. Here we are, hung salon style on the pristine white walls of a prestigious downtown gallery.

Jen Graves, art critic for the Stranger, gave us the coveted "Stranger Suggests" pick. She pitched the show this way:

"This recessionary year, almost nobody is going to Art Basel Miami, meaning December's First Thursday should be at full strength all over Pioneer Square. Howard House hosts furious live cartooning by Friends of the Nib, the Seattle cartooning cabal founded by Bob Rini and Jim Woodring, along with a three-day-only show of their work, paired with a regular-fancy-art show—The Figure—full of bodies of all kinds made by other bodies, from the late Philip Guston to contemporary L.A. artist Ruby Osorio. (Howard House, 604 Second Ave, 256-6399. 6–8 pm, free.)"


The show also includes dazzling new work by Ellen Forney, Max Clotfelter, David Lasky, Tom Dougherty, Scott Faulkner, Heidi Estey, Calamity Jon, the amazing animator Bruce Bickford, and more.

"Cu cu, Cu cu, Cantaba la Ranita," by Bob Rini. A stuffed Mexican frog sings a corrida

Stop by and see the show, mingle with the artists, eat some cheese, buy some art. This is a chance to beat the curve and get something from Edge City before the world catches up. We'll be there, drawing live most of the time. Come by Saturday, December 5th at noon for our cartoon workshop.

The Friends of the Nib, circa 2009