April 20th, 2016


The Mary Sue Interview: Dean Haspiel Talks The Red Hook and LINE Webtoon’s New Brooklyn Universe

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Teresa Jusino interviewed me about my new/free webcomic series, THE RED HOOK and the "New Brooklyn Universe" for The Mary Sue.


"I was born and raised in Manhattan but moved to Carroll Gardens, Brooklyn 19 years ago after a sad break-up with a girlfriend. It took me a while to acclimate from the fast-paced white noise of NYC to the slower paced neighborhoods of Brooklyn, but I fell in love with how vast and accessible it was. I discovered the waterfront via Montero Lounge on Atlantic avenue and heard whispers of a timeless bar in Red Hook nicknamed Sunny’s for the spirited owner who ran it as a friendly speakeasy for folks in the know. I dubbed it “the last bar at the end of the world.” I found a serene sense of peace and possibility in Brooklyn that I didn’t encounter growing up in competitive Manhattan. A sense I’ve since discovered in parts of Upstate NY, the Catskills, Los Feliz, and New Orleans. For many years I’ve made comix in shared Gowanus studios, from Deep6 to Hang Dai, and helped spark small creative communities in real-life and virtually. And, now that a bunch of Gowanus artists are getting kicked out of their studio spaces (including me) for land developers to fancy up otherwise undesirable work-zones in order to hike rents in what has become the most expensive city in America, I’m getting sick and tired of my homeland economically banishing its natives.

I don’t have the answers. I’m not a scientist or a professor. I live by my gut and try to contribute good will with the romance of my art. Ergo, my recent memoir collection, BEEF WITH TOMATO (from Alternative Comics), and my abstract fantasy of a New Brooklyn that gets explored in THE RED HOOK and beyond."

"History tends to repeat itself, so you have to look back in order to move forward. Brooklyn is still a great place for diversity, culture, food and art, but it will only be shaped by the last artists and curators standing in an economy that can’t afford the avante garde and the under-looked like it once did when my mother was the deputy director of the New York State Council of the Arts. Back when artists could afford to live small and create unhindered. Nowadays, it seems you need to have a 5-year plan and a digital app to hawk while you social network more than you create. Hype has become as necessary as a paint brush and pen."

You can read the entire interview/article here: http://www.themarysue.com/interview-dean-haspiel-the-red-hook/