Richard McGuire’s inventive graphic novel Here is set in a single location for its entire duration: the corner of a room in a house. However, each double-page image depicts this fixed space at a different moment throughout time, ranging the complete span of human history and beyond. Grand changes play out over the years, juxtaposed against mundane still moments in the lives the home’s various inhabitants. Events echo throughout time, such as when a window into the décor of 2014 is used to resonate with a scene from 1775. Styles change, children grow older, and lives unfold in unexpectedly affecting fragments. Here demonstrates that both the beautiful and ordinary qualities of life alike can remain strangely similar in any era.
For more formally complex graphic novels, try…
A series of stylistically diverse chapters mimicking comic strips collectively offer a multifaceted portrayal of a small Midwestern town in Ice Haven by Daniel Clowes.
McGuire’s original 1989 short story version of “Here” is featured in An Anthology of Graphic Fiction, Cartoons & True Stories Volume 1 edited by Ivan Brunetti.
Building Stories by Chris Ware follows the dissatisfactions of a young woman and her neighbors across fourteen distinct printed comics.
Dash Shaw’s Bodyworld tells its futuristic tale of drug-induced telepathy as a vertical scroll of expressionistic imagery, illustrating a full range of sensory experiences.
Asterios Polyp by David Mazzucchelli concerns a story of architecture and design, mirrored in its own elegantly crafted visual construction.