The Iron Parachute by Cor Blok (24.08.14 by Pieter Collier) - Comments

‘The Iron Parachute’ is a graphic novel written and designed by Cor Blok which is going to be published by Oloris Publishing in Toronto, Canada.

Cor Blok may be known to you mainly through his miniature paintings based on ‘The Lord of the Rings’, but his painterly output contains a large body of works entirely independent from J.R.R.Tolkien’s saga.

‘The Iron Parachute’ is the result of an enterprise that started as far back as 1967. It consists of about 25 episodes loosely strung together, like scenes in a dream, by the appearance of one or two protagonists in different roles and guises. There is a journey ending in shipwreck, a trial scene, a creation myth, an Odyssey across a city full of hallucinating architecture ending in a theatre where another part of the story is being enacted, and so on.
The Iron Parachute by Cor Blok

There is no ‘plot’ in the usual sense: the book is constructed rather like a building with many different rooms that may be visited starting anywhere. Each episode has a different layout, and relationships between text and images vary from one section to another. One section consists of images only, in others the images merely illustrate the texts. In this respect ‘The Iron Parachute’ constitutes an experiment, a voyage of discovery in the field of communication through images.

In contrast to Cor Blok’s Tolkien paintings, where colour plays an essential part, ‘The Iron Parachute’ is entirely in black and white. The technique involves pen drawings as well as collage. The size of the book is rather unusual for a graphic novel: 339 pages measuring 355 x 295 millimeters.

More information will be supplied as work on the book progresses.

In the meantime a limited number of Cor Blok’s original Tolkien paintings is still being offered for sale.

Also available: exceptionally accurate reproductions of about 10 pictures, and the book ‘A Tolkien Tapestry’ in which all of the paintings are reproduced (also in French and Italian editions).
The Stairs of Cirith Ungol by Cor Blok - reproduction

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