The Being Being
In 2007, while involved in Portland OR’s underground music and art scene, Jason Overby self-published 50 copies of a 24-page mini-comic titled simply “Jessica”. A network of artists were soon involved in what felt like a continuous web of communication about who Overby was, and when Overby was going to have a new mini-comic, and when and where you could find it if you were lucky. Jessica and the titles to follow were an enigma of intense labor that seemed a task impossible for one person alone. So much thought had gone into them, so much attention to life’s poetic details and so many lines, marks, stamps. And the complexity of these handmade self-published art products kept growing. From hand-stamped work to covers with original multimedia painting and collage work for each hand-stapled book. The complexity of Overby’s narrative was also growing with titles like “Solipsist’s Doodles,” a book that felt like Cocteau-esque poetry filtered through Oklahoma City to “Exploding Head Man,” Overby’s brand of super hero comics that’s like Jean Paul Sartre’s Nausea wrapped in Gary Panter’s wallpaper.
Next Overby turned the underground comics world inside out, teaming with Blaise Larmee to make comix comix, later to be called co-mix or comets comets. Through this avenue Overby examined and explored the boundaries and idiosyncrasies of comics criticism, drawing the lines between critic and creator and whiting them out, scratching away parts of the whiteout surface and stamping his name over that texture left under it. In 2010 Overby printed his last mini-comic, poignantly titled “Obligatory Artifact,” and moved on to making his next work, the internet media masterpiece that is 2101. Now long overdue, we finally have the first ever collection of Overby’s mini comics work and his graphic novel Exploding Head Man all together with new work! BEING BEING!
“Jason Overby’s work pulls apart reality into scattered and frantic pieces, inserting you into the depths of his fragmentized psyche. Lines, marks, colors, patterns become humanized, allowing a unique examination of the structures of existence and daily life.” — Aidan Koch
“In short, the joy in reading Overby’s stuff comes from the feeling that, amidst the catharsis and beyond the margins, he’s still surprising himself. ” — Scott Longo (Sonatina Comics)
4.13 x 5.83
September 3, 2015