2-8-2020 8:00 AM
2-8-2020 12:30 PM
The fanfic, the fanart, the zines, the romance novels, the fairy tales are things people turn their noses up at in public, but secretly enjoy in private. Even more so, these are the things that are often made and consumed by women, indelibly linked to women by our society, and removed from mainstream success and acknowledgement, specifically because they are associated with women. Men make canon (source narratives) and religion, women make “fanon” (supplements to the canon) and fairy tales. Even though we often dismiss these amateur works out of hand as trash, they contain multitudes of talent, vision, and relevance. Even the Brothers Grimm knew this; that’s why they collected their fairy tales from the best sources – old women who told the stories to their children around the family hearth. I first read Andersen’s “Little Mermaid” when I was 8 – around the time Disney’s version came out. Even then, the story struck me as unnecessarily cruel. All the mermaid wanted to do was get married and have a soul; instead, she is constantly injured, hurt, and humiliated. The moral seems to be “never leave your assigned role in life.” What if, instead, we acknowledge that sometimes we do stupid things for love, but that shouldn’t be the end of the world? What if the things life throws your way sometimes turn out to be better than what you intended in the first place? What if love is actually important? Where Andersen sneered at the Little Mermaid, we can welcome her with open arms and assure her that life goes on. To this end, I have created a 16-page, full color, hand-bound book of original drawings transferred to paper by laser-cut woodblock prints laid over reduction linocuts. While registration and time constraints were a challenge, I hope you will find the result to be worth the effort.