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Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books Sheds Light on the Struggles and Triumphs of Black Pioneers

Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books

During the formative years of the comic book industry, talented Black artists worked behind-the-scenes to create thrilling tales of superheroes, horror, and romance. Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books, a new hardcover book by comics historian Ken Quattro, is a riveting exploration of this little-known history, published by Yoe Books, an IDW imprint, and out in stores now.

Using primary source material from World War II-era Black newspapers and magazines, this compelling book profiles pioneers like E.C. Stoner, a renowned fine artist of the Harlem Renaissance and the first Black artist to draw comic books; Owen Middleton, whose life sentence in Sing Sing became a cause célèbre championed by historian Will Durant, leading both to freedom and a career in comics; Matt Baker, who drew Vooda, the first groundbreaking Black comic book hero; and many more. Each man’s personal struggles and triumphs are represented as they broke through into an industry formerly occupied only by whites.

Gorgeously illustrated with rare examples of each artist’s work, Invisible Men features Ken Quattro’s impeccable research of the social and cultural environments in which these extraordinary men lived and worked, plus full stories from mainstream comic books, rare reprints from titlles including All-Negro Comics and Negro Heroes, and unpublished artist’s photos.

Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books is 240 pages, retails for $34.99 and can be ordered from local comic shops or online.

Preview: Invisible Men: Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books

Invisible Men: Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books

(W) Ken Quattro (A) Matt Baker, Alvin Hollingsworth, E.C. Stoner
In Shops: Dec 16, 2020
SRP: $34.99

Read about the riveting stories of Black artists who drew, mostly behind the scenes, superhero, horror, and romance comics in the early years of the industry.

The life stories of each man’s personal struggles and triumphs are represented as they broke through into a world formerly occupied only by white artists. Using primary source material from World War II-era Black newspapers and magazines, this compelling book profiles pioneers like E.C. Stoner, a descendant of one of George Washington’s slaves. Stoner became a renowned fine artist of the Harlem Renaissance. Perhaps more fascinating is Owen Middleton who was sentenced to life in Sing Sing. Then there is Matt Baker, the most revered of the Black artists, whose exquisite art spotlights stunning women and men, and who drew the first groundbreaking Black comic book hero, Vooda!

Gorgeously illustrated with rare examples of each artist’s work, including full stories from mainstream comic books to rare titles like All-Negro Comics and Negro Heroes, plus unpublished artist’s photos and art. Invisible Men: The Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books features Ken Quattro’s over 20 years of impeccable research and writing. The social and cultural environments that formed these extraordinary artists are deftly detailed by Quattro in this must-have book!

Invisible Men: Trailblazing Black Artists of Comic Books