Friday, July 20, 2012


On Wednesday July 25th at 6PM, Jim Hanley's Universe hosts LEAPING TALL BUILDINGS: THE ORIGINS OF AMERICAN COMICS authors Christopher Irving and Seth Kushner, plus an assembly of top notch comic book creators who are featured in the book; Chris Claremont (X-Men) Larry Hama (G.I. Joe), Dean Haspiel (TRIP CITY), Kevin Colden (The Crow), Joe Infunari (Marathon), Simon Fraser (Nikolai Dante) and  Matt Madden (Mastering Comics).

There will be a panel with all the aforementioned creators as well as a book signing where creators will be signing Leaping as well as their own works.

Jim Hanley's Universe
July 25th at 6PM
4 West 33rd Street
New York, New York 10001

Visit the Facebook event page

Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins Of American Comics, a love letter to the comic book industry, tells the  history of comics through 50 creator profiles including; Art Spiegelman, Al Jaffee, Dean Haspiel, Chris Ware, Denny O’Neil, Becky Cloonan, Brian Micahel Bendis, Josh Neufeld, Joe Simon, Jessica Abel, Frank Miller, Gene Colan, Grant Morrison, Harvey Pekar, Jill Thompson, Jimmy Palmiotti, Larry Hama, Michael Kupperman, Mike Allred, Neal Adams, Neil Gaiman, Paul Pope and many more.

The book has been garnering strong reviews:

Publisher’s Weekly posted a nice interview / article and of the book says, “A new book about the comics industry is nearly as epic as the field’s history itself.”
Flavorwire says of Leaping: “You may think you know the men and women behind your favorite superheroes, but of course, there’s yet another man behind Clark Kent — his creator.” featured Leaping Tall Buildings, along with interviews with Kushner and Irving and a gallery of images from the book by Kushner, and noted that “Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics gives the writers and artists who create them a chance to shine.”

Huffington Post featured a gallery of Kushner’s photos and says, “A major part of the book is the art of photographer Seth Kushner, who has captured remarkable images of some of the biggest living names in comics.”

The New York Times calls the book “a great survey of many of the talented men and women behind the characters.”

The Wall Street Journal refers to Leaping as “a collection of brief and beautifully illustrated profiles of comic-book artists.”

Be sure to preview some of the Kushner’s photos from the book at Photo District News’s Photo of the Day gallery, Real Life Comic Book Heroes.

Listen to Seth Kushner (along with Dean Haspiel) on John Siuntres’s Word Balloon Podcast.

Read an interview with Seth Kushner at SciFiPulse.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012


powerHouse Books is pleased to announce
Housing Works Bookstore Cafe 126 Crosby Street, New York, NY 10012

The legendary creative team of artist Neal Adams and writer Dennis O'Neil reunites for a special panel on "Social Relevance in Comics" at Housing Works Bookstore on July 17th, moderated by Christopher Irving, writer of Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics (powerHouse Books). Leaping Tall Buildings gives a historical survey of the comic book medium through photographer Seth Kushner's unique portraits and Irving's interview-based essays. The pair are celebrating the book's release through this benefit panel at Housing Works.

"Through their revolutionary work on both Batman and Green Lantern/Green Arrow, Adams and O'Neil literally redefined the superhero, pushing the genre into wider social acceptance and more mature themes," Irving, a Housing Works member, says. "When you think of what they each did on their own, and then look at their combined efforts, it's mind-blowing. Getting to moderate the two of them together is beyond an honor for me--it's a once in a lifetime opportunity."

"When thinking about who to feature at an event for Housing Works, Adams and O'Neil immediately sprung to mind," says Kushner. "Their Green Lantern/Green Arrow work broke new ground in social consciousness in comics and we're thrilled to be reuniting them for so great a cause."

The panel will cover the use of social relevance in the O'Neil/Adams issues of Green Lantern/Green Arrow from the early 1970s and will also touch on their milestone work on the Batman comics during that time. Their Batman run redefined the character for the post-television generations by restoring the character's status as "The Dark Knight," while their GL/GA run brought mainstream media attention to the then-underappreciated superhero genre.

Neal Adams brought an unprecedented sense of realism to superhero art in the 1960s. His work on X-Men, as well as his dynamic cover and interior art for DC Comics, redefined the look and dynamism of the superhero genre for generations. Currently writing and drawing the limited series Batman: Odyssey, Adams is gearing up for The First X-Men, a mini-series that he will be drawing and co-writing with Christos Gage.

Dennis O'Neil continued to bring a real world gravitas to superheros through subsequent decades, with stints as writer and then editor of Daredevil at Marvel Comics (where he edited Frank Miller's iconic run). O'Neil returned to DC Comics in the 1980s as editor of the Batman titles where he masterminded the creation of Batman villian Bane, who serves as the villian in this month's film The Dark Knight Rises.

Housing Works is a New York City based non-profit organization that provides support to victims of HIV/AIDS and works to end the dual crises of AIDS and homelessness through relentless advocacy, the provision of lifesaving services, and entrepreneurial businesses that sustain our efforts.

Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics outlines the history of comic books through the creators, documented in Irving's interview-based essays and Kushner's photography. The Wall Street Journal calls Leaping Tall Buildings "a living history," while The New York Times considers it "a great survey of many of the talented men and women behind the characters." Publisher's Weekly calls it "nearly as epic as the field's history itself," while Huffington Post refers to Kushner's photography as "remarkable."

For more information about Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics please click here.

Read the GRAPHIC NYC profiles on Neal Adams here and Dennis O'Neil here, by Christopher Irving and Seth Kushner, a version of which appears in their book, Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics.

Read the GRAPHIC NYC profiles on Neal Adams and Dennis O'Neil, by Christopher Irving and Seth Kushner, a version of which appears in their book, Leaping Tall Buildings: The Origins of American Comics.

For more information, please contact Nina Ventura, Publicist
powerHouse Books, 37 Main Street, Brooklyn, NY 11201
Tel: 212-604-9074 x118, Fax: 212-366-5247, email:
© Copyright 2012 powerHouse Books

Sunday, July 8, 2012



I had the honor of briefly meeting and photographing Ernest Borgnine last year.  He struck me as a sweet and gentle man.  As a child I knew him from Disney's The Black Hole, and as an adult I marveled at his iconic performance as the lovable loser in Marty. Watching the film last year I was amazed at his naturalistic performance as a real New York character.  He hardly seemed to be acting, but instead inhabiting this guy from the Bronx who was looking for love.

Ernest Borgnine was one of the greats.