A surrealist journey through alienation, lost dreams, and self-redemption.
A woman loses her sister to suicide and struggles with the overwhelming and confusing feelings that continue to plague her. A man reflects on a decade spent working in a call centre and the strange day-to-day momentum that caused him to unconsciously abandon his goals. Helem relies on a propulsive graphic narrative and evocative illustration to tell the intensely personal stories of two characters at a crossroads.
The nearly wordless stories contained in Helem, originally published by TRIP as Agalma and Sequences delve deep into the internal lives of their characters. Helem, created while Wany was in a hallucinatory state brought on by a severe lack of sleep, also provides an intimate look into his own personal dreamscape.
“[Helem] feels like a gift for anyone who appreciates a certain type of mainstream comics art, but wishes it were allowed to flower unhampered.” —The Comics Journal
About the Author
Stanley Wany is an Afro-Canadian artist based in Montreal as well as in Canada’s national capital region. His practice includes graphic novels, pen and ink drawings, and paintings. His works has been exhibited in Canada, the United States, France, Portugal, Finland and Australia, and are found in private and public collections.
Agalma, his first graphic novel, was nominated in 2016 for a Doug Wright Award, highlighting the best experimental comics at the Toronto Comics and Arts Festival. As an author, Wany has participated as a guest and panelist in festivals in Canada, France, Finland, Portugal and the United States. In 2018, he completed an artist residency at the Arteles Centre, west of Tampere in Finland, and over the years he has been the recipient of several travel and creation grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec.
He is currently pursuing a Masters in Media and Fine Arts at the Université du Québec à Montreal. Wany has founded two independent publication companies, Trip Comix, and recently Argle Bargle Books. The basis of his practice in comics and visual arts explores mainstream culture, the subconscious, and myths, specifically as these relate the experience of people of African descent in Western society.
240 pages, 7×8 inches
b&w, trade paper