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Words Are Pictures: Writing and Drawing Weimar Berlin

February 9 @ 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

$7.00 – $15.00

Before written language existed, people drew pictures, everywhere. Representational drawings evolved into pictograms, and some pictograms were abstracted into phonetic symbols which could be strung together to form words. The medium of comics takes these now apparently disparate elements—the picture and the word—and reunites them to create a form of expression greater than the sum of its parts. 

Starting with these building blocks, cartoonist Jason Lutes and illustrator Nora Krug will discuss how Jason conceived, researched, wrote, and drew a 550-page graphic novel about the city of Berlin between 1929 to 1933; a process which took 22 years and coincided in its final stages with the international surge in fascism that accompanied the Presidential election of 2016. Along the way they will discuss the greatest influences on his storytelling, from Ursula le Guin’s A Wizard of Earthsea to Wim Wenders’ Wings of Desire, and what happens when we listen closely to history.

This event is being presented as part of Carnegie Hall’s citywide festival Fall of the Weimar Republic: Dancing on the Precipice and co-presented with the German Consulate General New York.

Photograph supplied by Jason Lutes

Jason Lutes graduated from the Rhode Island School of Design with a BFA in Illustration in 1991. He is the author of the graphic novels Jar of Fools, Houdini: The Handcuff King, and Berlin, which Forbes magazine called, “One of the most ambitious, important and fully-realized works of graphic literature yet created.” He currently teaches comics at the Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont.

Nora Krug is the award-winning author and illustrator of Diaries of War, an illustrated account of Russia’s war on Ukraine through different viewpoints. Her other work includes the graphic memoir Belonging, the illustrator of adaptation of On Tyranny by Timothy Snyder, and an associate professor at Parsons School of Design in New York. Her drawings and visual narratives have appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, and Le Monde Diplomatique.

Photograph by Nina Subin

This event will take place in the Main Gallery. Bathrooms are only accessible via stairs.

Tickets are non-refundable. Tickets may not be exchanged for another event. If you are unable to use your ticket, tickets may be converted to a donation by emailing


February 9
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
$7.00 – $15.00
Event Category:


At the Society
128 East 63rd Street
New York, NY 10065 United States
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