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The Cage (1975)
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First published in 1975, this work foreshadowed the rise of the graphic novel. While promoted by insiders in the years that followed, it is not well-known. Its relative obscurity may be due to the late Vaughn-James's devotion to his highly personal vision. Presented here are a series of black-and-white drawings, nearly clinical in their precision, detailing an enigmatic structure in an unspecified place and time. Accompanying the illustrations are bits of text, which are perhaps explicative in their unseen whole but as fragments offer only tantalizing hints of possible unity. Nonlinear in its approach to both space and time, the study mixes the banally familiar with the disturbingly alien. What emerges is not comprehensible in any mundane sense, but it presents enough of an illusion of a greater whole lurking just out of frame to be addictively engaging. It is a masterpiece, demonstrating a level of skill and insight very few have even aspired to in the nearly 40 years since its initial publication
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