The Present by Sara Varon

Categories:  Reviews

The Present
by Sara Varon
Walker Art Center

The PresentHappy Boxing Day! Here’s a review of a comic about a box and the present it contained.

Sara Varon (Robot Dreams, Chicken & Cat) is a cartoonist and illustrator with a lot to do. I’m reminded of this every time I go to the Walker Art Center because her work is EVERYWHERE! I first became familiar with Varon about three years ago when I fell in love with a free promotional magnet she illustrated for the Minneapolis Sculpture Garden. Now for Christmas I just received a copy of her 2005 promotional comic for the Walker called The Present. Today seemed like a good day to talk about it.

It’s always really fun to see Varon’s artwork. Her characters are playful and imaginative and I love how goofy the rabbit ears look — like handles. I read once that she made cookies shaped like the dog’s head from Robot Dreams and brought them to a signing or something. Varon does her best to make promotional material not entirely a snooze and I appreciate that.

The Present is a story about a snowman living in Minneapolis, away from his home at the North Pole, who receives a very special gift. One so special that he has to call everyone he knows over to his place to check it out. His friends suggest that he find someplace special to display the gift — someplace like a gallery. Then the trio (snowman turtle and rabbit) hit up the Walker Art Center to gather inspiration that will help them turn snowman’s home into a temporary gallery. They spend the day there having fun and come home with a very unique idea of what a gallery can be.

The Present is available only through the Walker Art Center, so for those of you Varon fans who are starving for material until she comes out with Chicken & Cat 2 next year, may I direct your attention to the WALKER SHOP?

-Sarah Morean