SelfMadeHero’s Spring 2023 Titles Announced: New Graphic Biographies Of Frida Kahlo, Thomas Girtin And More

by Richard Bruton

SelfMadeHero have announced their new slate of titles for Spring 2023, including work from Reinhard Kleist, Mary & Bryan Talbot, and Oscar Zarate.

One of the best UK publishers, SelfMadeHero have a long, long history of finding the very best original works and new English translations of works from around the world. Their new slate of books just announced for Spring 2023 continue this tradition of quality, diversity, and groundbreaking work.

New work includes Francisco del la Moro‘s biography of the artist Frida Kahlo: Her Work, Her Home in the latest in the Art Masters series, Mary and Bryan Talbot celebrate the life of the reluctant muse and feminist champion Leonora Carrington in Armed With Madness. The brilliant Reinhard Kleist takes a look at the Starman himself, with Starman: Bowie’s Stardust Years, whilst Oscar Zarate‘s long-awaited new work takes a long look at the painter Thomas Girtin in The Forgotten Painter. And finally, just in time for the King’s coronation, Teresa Robertson and Leo Schulz present The Comical Eye’s British Monarchy: From Alfred the Great to Charless III.

Press info and covers below… more on each book when we get them…


Frida Kahlo: Her Work, Her Home – by Francisco de la Mora – March 2023

Frida Kahlo: Her Life, Her Work, Her Home explores the public and private faces of this iconic artist, whose transformation of personal pain and political vision into unforgettable art has made her one of the most inspiring personalities of the 20th century. This latest addition to our ART MASTERS series depicts and defines the astonishing context against which her paintings struggled to be seen, her emergence from the shadow cast by her on-off life-partner Diego Rivera, and the beautiful home she created in Mexico City.


The Comical Eye’s British Monarchy: From Alfred the Great to Charles III – by Teresa Robertson and Leo Schulz (May 2023)

STOP PRESS! Ahead of our new King’s coronation in May, we are proud to be publishing The Comical Eye’s British Monarchy: From Alfred the Great to Charles III, Teresa Robertson and Leo Schulz’s quirky chronicle of the Royal Family. From Anglo-Saxon and medieval times, when princely brothers violently squabbled and ambitious stepmothers were suspected of plots, to these our more enlightened times, this unique booklet unfolds our thousand-year history into a double-sided, single-sheet poster – an alternative strip-cartoon Bayeux Tapestry for the 21st-century.


Armed With Madness: The Surreal Leonora Carrington – by Mary & Bryan Talbot (June 2023)

In May we celebrate another reluctant muse and feminist champion. Armed with Madness: The Surreal Leonora Carrington, from the acclaimed team of Mary M. Talbot and Bryan Talbot, tells the astonishing story of another hidden genius. Only ten years younger than Frida Kahlo, the no less troubled life and art of Leonora Carrington – painter, writer, activist – tracked and traced the surreal turmoil of the 20th century. Born to the purple of an English elite, Leonora came to keep company with Paris’s 1930s avant-garde, escaped the brutalities of Nazi Occupation and psychiatric confinement, and found contented exile in (where else but?) Mexico City…


Starman: Bowie’s Stardust Years – by Reinhard Kleist (June 2023)

… AKA “Suffragette City”? David Bowie famously visited the Frida Kahlo Museum in 1997, and it was one of Leonora Carrington’s short stories that inspired his final single, “Lazarus”, in 2016. But that was long after the appearance of his most original chameleon creation – now the subject of the multi-award-winning Reinhard Kleist’s stunning new graphic novel, launching this April. Starman: Bowie’s Stardust Years relates the genius of that slow genesis, and the enduring impact it made on cultural history – as well as the toll its performance took on Bowie himself.


Thomas Girtin: The Forgotten Painter – by Oscar Zarate (June 2023)

And talking of visionary South Londoners, we are proud to confirm the publication in June of Thomas Girtin: The Forgotten Painter – the long-awaited new work by veteran graphic novelist Oscar Zarate. A friend and rival of the great J.M.W. Turner, by the time of his early death in 1802, Girtin had already transformed the humble art of watercolour into a transcendent medium. Interweaving historical narrative with modern fiction, Zarate’s own masterpiece pays unique homage to this neglected pioneer.

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