Pasadena City College Art Gallery presents work by two of the most widely acclaimed artists in the history of American comics, Gilbert Hernandez (b. 1957) and Jaime Hernandez (b. 1959). The PCC exhibit will include more than thirty original drawings, as well as a reading area for gallery visitors who wish to settle in and read complete published comics.
Named by Time magazine as among the “100 American Innovators” for the 21st century, “Los Bros Hernandez,” as they are sometimes known, are pioneering figures in the movement of independently authored comics and graphic novels that has arisen since the early 1980s. Since 1981, their separately authored works have been published jointly in a magazine format under the title “Love and Rockets.” When The Comics Journal polled its editors in 1999 to determine the 100 greatest English-language comics of the twentieth century, the upper reaches of the list (which was topped by George Herriman’s Krazy Kat) included two works by Gilbert Hernandez and three by Jaime Hernandez.
Raised in the multiethnic farming and beach community of Oxnard, California, each of the Hernandez brothers creates innovatively designed comic stories noted for their epic scope and depth of characterization, and for their embrace of subcultures that had rarely if ever been previously depicted in comics. Their works feature complex female protagonists, Latin American families, Southern California punk rockers, and a gallery of fully realized characters who matter-of-factly reflect diverse ethnic backgrounds, sexual preferences, and economic classes.
“Love and Rockets broke new ground for comics in both content and form… revitalizing long-form comics with new themes, new types of characters, and fresh approaches to narrative technique,” writes comics scholar Charles Hatfield, in his book Alternative Comics: An Emerging Literature (University of Mississippi Press, 2005). The first series of Love and Rockets extended fifty issues before concluding in 1996. In 2001, the brothers revived Love and Rockets in a smaller format; fourteen issues of the second volume have been published to date by Fantagraphics Books, Seattle, Washington. Fantagraphics has also published massive hardcover collections of their major continuous storylines, Palomar (2003) by Gilbert Hernandez and Locas (2004) by Jaime Hernandez.
PASADENA CITY COLLEGE ART GALLERY 1570 East Colorado Blvd. Pasadena, CA 91106 Recorded Gallery information: (626) 585-3285 Additional information: (626) 585-7238
Digital images of works in the show are available on request.