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July 28, 1982 |
Hip Hop Family Tree series
Ed Piskor (born July 28, 1982) is an alternative comics artist operating out of Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He is a former student of The Kubert School and is best known for his artistic collaborations with underground comics pioneers Harvey Pekar of American Splendor fame, and Jay Lynch who illustrates Garbage Pail Kids. He has a cult following amongst minicomic fans with his series Deviant Funnies and Isolation Chamber.
Piskor was fascinated by comics throughout his childhood. He was a great fan of mainstream comics such as The Amazing Spider-Man, but his interest in the alternative comics developed rapidly when, at the age of 9, he saw a documentary that had Harvey Pekar reading one of his American Splendor stories.
His first major comics Deviant Funnies and the autobiographical Isolation Chamber are generally marked with dark humour. In 2003 he started his collaboration with Jay Lynch, and shortly after that with Harvey Pekar. Piskor's first major task with Pekar was illustrating stories of American Splendor: Our Movie Year, which elaborates Pekar's experience after the release of the movie American Splendor. Piskor also illustrated Pekar's graphic novel Macedonia, which was released in 2007 through Villard Books.
Piskor's latest series, Wizzywig deals with Kevin "Boingthump" Phenicle, a young prodigy who becomes fascinated with social engineering, phone phreaking, and eventually computer hacking. As the series progresses, Kevin grows as well as his trials and tribulations with hacking. His endeavors make him legendary; his abilities are feared and also revered by many.
The character from the series, Kevin, is a composite of many well known phreaks and hackers such as Kevin Mitnick, Kevin Poulsen, Joy bubbles, and many others. Volume 1: Phreak is available through Piskor's website.
Piskor's drawing has been influenced by 1960s and '70s underground comix scene, and he also points to Robert Crumb as a major influence, but comic critics have praised Piskor for developing his own artistic style.
In 2009 Piskor collaborated with Pekar on the graphic book The Beats: A Graphic History. The book was published in the UK by Souvenir Press Ltd and drew plaudits from Studs Terkel: “The Beats is as fresh and pertinent as the latest scholarly history, only far more entertaining.” The Beats tells the story of Jack Kerouac, Allen Ginsberg, William S. Burroughs and John Clellon Holmes who became known as The Beat Generation. This cultural revolution is seen through the eyes of the movement's key figures and its minor characters including Diane di Prima, Carolyn Cassady, Philip Lamantia, and others. The startlingly original graphic non-fiction work was highly praised in Vanity Fair: “Editor Paul Buhle’s graphic history The Beats — with riffs from cats such as Harvey Pekar and Trina Robbins — burns like a Roman candle.”
- Comics Buyer's Guide #1650; February 2009; page 107
- Official website
- interview with Rob Clough
- Profile at ninthart.com
- Interview about Macedonia Graphic novel written by Harvey Pekar and Heather Roberson
- Review of Wizzywig Volume 1: Phreak by Brian Heater
- Review of Wizzywig Volume 1: Phreak at Newsarama
- Short comic featured in Smith Mag: “My neighbor the dickhead”