As the above audio recording will confirm, I was just on RRR’s Aural Text show with the lovely Jeff and Emily, talking over the top of them for nine minutes and change as I waxed lyrical about Bruce Mutard’s most recent graphic novel, The Silence.
The Silence is the story of art gallery manager Choosy McBride and her reaction to an anonymous painting that she regards as one of the finest and most emotionally resonant artworks she has ever seen.
Roping her partner Dmitri, a painter, in on her quest to discover the artist’s identity, she travels to far north Queensland, paying for their trip by combining it with a meeting with Fred McWilliams, a famous but reclusive artist whom Choosy’s gallery represents.
The three protagonists’ quite distinct reactions to the anonymity of the mysterious artist form the crux of this amazing graphic novel, which asks hard questions about the nature and purpose of art and why anyone would choose to become an artist.
You can use the player above listen to me bang on about the above in more detail (apologies for the abrupt ending – I forgot about the delayed transmission thing), and you can check out a preview of the book over on Allen & Unwin’s website.