Gasoline Alley, a classic comic strip: an exhibition on the famous strip in Bologna

From March 15 to April 7, 2019, Palazzo Fava in Bologna is hosting Frank King. A Century of Gasoline Alley, an exhibition to rediscover a great classic of early comics, now considered the precursor of the modern graphic novel. Since Nov. 24, 1918, when the first episode appeared in the Chicago Tribune, the Gasoline Alley strip has spanned a hundred years of history, recounting with poetry and humor the lives of ordinary people faced with the great events of the 20th Century. A monumental work that has outlived its author and appears to us today as one great novel realized in real time.

Curated by BilBOlbul together with TV author and comics scholar Giovanni Nahmias, the exhibition brings to Europe for the first time a selection of nearly 50 original plates, organized in a path that immerses the visitor in the extraordinary world created by Frank King over the decades. The exhibition will then continue until April 7, 2019, in parallel with the major Bonvi retrospective, itself hosted in the spaces of Palazzo Fava.

GasolineAlley, literally “the gasoline road,” chronicles the daily events of Walt Wallet and his friends, all of whom are car enthusiasts. Initially, it is a humorous strip like many found in the 1920s in the pages of American newspapers. But on February 14, 1921, King gives Walt’s life a turning point: someone deposits a baby boy, Skeezix, on his doorstep. It is a pivotal moment in the evolution of the character and at the same time in the history of comics: responding to the need to broaden the readership, it introduces real-time progression into comics: characters will grow and age along with their readers, day by day.

Walt and Skeezix go through the same seasons as their author and readers, aging along with them at the rate of a strip a day (in black and white Monday through Saturday, and in color in the splendid Sunday pages, which feature King’s most spectacular artistic outbursts). Gasoline Alley is, in the words of the exhibition’s curator, John Nahmias, “the story of a lifetime, a lifetime long.” This allows King to infuse the strip with current events, making Gasoline Alley an ever-changing mirror of American society: as the years go by, Skeezix grows up, and in his twenties he leaves (like the readers’ children) for war, growing in the public’s affection as one of the family. He will return, become a great-grandfather, and make it to the present, who at 97 still stands as a valuable witness to the present. King personally drew Gasoline Alley from 1918 to 1956 spanning generations and inspiring films, radio series and songs. Despite the passing of its creator, Gasoline Alley has never stopped, and is now in the care of Jim Scancarelli.

For all information you can visit the official BilBOlbul website.

Source: release

Gasoline Alley, a classic comic strip: an exhibition on the famous strip in Bologna
Gasoline Alley, a classic comic strip: an exhibition on the famous strip in Bologna

Warning: the translation into English of the original Italian article was created using automatic tools. We undertake to review all articles, but we do not guarantee the total absence of inaccuracies in the translation due to the program. You can find the original by clicking on the ITA button. If you find any mistake,please contact us.