It is unsurprising that Dylan Horrock’s first words were “Donald Duck”.
A talented writer and visual artist from an early age, Dylan soon realised that cartoons enabled him to use both art forms simultaneously. He was indeed like a duck to water using this “hybrid art form”.

 

Dylan has been a trail-blazer in the New Zealand comic scene, since the 1980s, co-founding Razor with Cornelius Stone and contributing frequently to the University of Auckland student magazine Craccum. Dylan’s comic book series Pickle is the work that first brought him to wider attention in the 1990s, and ten issues were subsequently published by Black Eye Comics (Canada).  In the decades that followed, Dylan would contribute to international comics such as Batgirl, Legends of the Dark Knight, Hunter: the Age of Magic and The Names of Magic for DC Comics USA.  He would also see his work get published by the likes of Fox Comics, Australia, and the American Fantagraphics Books. 

Dylan has three graphic novels in print: Hicksville, Incomplete Works, and Sam Zabel and the Magic Pen. Hicksville has been published in six languages and has been nominated for, and has won, a number of international accolades. It was included (at number 12) in the Rolling Stone magazine’s list of the 50 Best Non-Super-hero Graphic Novels of All Time and was named one of the top five Books of the Year by The Comics Journal (America’s leading magazine of comics criticism).

Dylan is the first Laureate Award recipient primarily known as a graphic novelist and cartoonist. For this, Dylan is incredibly pleased, as for too long, he feels, cartoonist have flown under the New Zealand arts radar. Dylan says it is an exciting time for New Zealand comics and feels he is the first of many who will be acknowledged, judging by the incredible work that is being produced at the moment. 

Dylan says his work always begins with daydreaming – whilst walking the dog, doing the dishes, sinking into slumber at night – these are the moments in which his stories start to stir. Then come the sketches, followed by an exciting journey into the unknown. He rarely knows where his stories will end up, noting that he is less of a “bus driver” and more of an “explorer”.

 

Selected bibliography:

Graphic novels:
Hicksville (Black Eye, 1998; revised edition Drawn & Quarterly/VUP, 2010)
Incomplete Works (Victoria University Press, 2014)
Sam Zabel and the Magic Pen (Fantagraphics/VUP/Casterman etc, 2014)

Comic book series:
Pickle (Tragedy Strikes Press/Black Eye, 1992-1997): issues 1-10
Atlas (Drawn & Quarterly, 2001-2006): issues 1-3

Collaborations:
All Hail Ellie, Destroyer of Worlds! with Emily Perkins (Hicksville Press, 2010)

As writer:
The Names of Magic (Vertigo, 2000-2001): issues 1-5 (trade paperback, 2002)
Hunter: the Age of Magic (Vertigo, 2001-2003): issues 1-25
Batgirl (DC Comics, 2003-2004): issues 39-57
Batman: Legends of the Dark Knight (DC Comics, 2004): issues 180-181, 184

As illustrator:
Highway Robbery, Joy Watson (Scholastic NZ, 1999)
The Adventures of Audubon, Peter Rees (Weldon Owen, 2005)
As Far as We Know: Conversations about Science, Life and the Universe, Paul Callaghan and Kim Hill (Penguin Books, 2007)
The Garden Party, Katherine Mansfield (Scout Books shorts, 2012)

Political cartoons:
Better Luck Next Century (Top Shelf, 2001)

Prose short stories:
‘Steam Girl,’ in Steampunk! An Anthology of Fantastically Rich and Strange Storiesedited by Kelly Link and Gavin Grant (Candlewick Press, USA, and Walker Books, UK, 2011)
‘Kitty Capulet and the Invention of Underwater Photography’ in Monstrous Affections: an anthology of Beastly Tales, edited by Kelly Link and Gavin Grant (Candlewick Press, USA, forthcoming 2014)

Non-fiction books:
Nga Pakiwaituhi o Aotearoa: New Zealand Comics (Hicksville Press, 1998; revised 2000)
New Zealand Comics and Graphic Novels (Hicksville Press, 2012)

Essays:
Inventing Comics: Scott McCloud’s Definition of Comics‘ in The Comics Journal #234, 2001
Perfect Planet: Comics, Games and World-Building‘ in Writing at the Edge of the Universe, edited by Mark Williams (Canterbury University Press, 2004)

Anthology contributions:

Dirty Storiesvol. 1 & 2, edited by Eric Reynolds (Fantagraphics, 1997, 2000)
Comix 2000 (L’Association, 2000)
9-11: Artists Respond (Dark Horse, 2001)
Bizarro Comicsedited by Joey Cavalieri (DC Comics, 2000)
Bizarro World, edited by Joey Cavalieri (DC Comics, 2004)
Little Nemo 1905-2005: Un Siècle de Rêvesedited by Benoît Peeters (Les Impressions Nouvelles, 2005)
Les Belles Étrangères : Douze Écrivains Néo-Zélandais (Sabine Wespieser, 2006)
Are Angels OK? The Parallel Universes of New Zealand Writers and Scientists, edited by Paul Callaghan and Bill Manhire (Victoria University Press, 2006)
Look This Way: New Zealand Writers on New Zealand Artists, edited by Sally Blundell (Auckland University Press, 2007)
Darkest Day: Comics for Christchurch (Funtime Comics, 2011)
Cartozia Tales (Cartozia Press, 2013)
Beyond the Free Market: Rebuilding a Just Society in New Zealand, edited by David Cooke, Claire Hill, Pat Baskett and Ruth Irwin (Dunmore Press, 2014)

Awards:
Eisner Award (USA, 2002): Talent Deserving of Wider Recognition for Atlas and Hicksville
University of Auckland-Creative NZ Literary Fellow (NZ, 2006)
Sir Julius Vogel Award (NZ, 2012): best novella for ‘Steam Girl’

Shorlisted awards:
Ignatz Awards (USA, 1997): Best Story and Best Art for Pickle
Harvey Award (USA, 1999): Best Graphic Novel for Hicksville
Ignatz Awards (USA, 1999): Best Graphic Novel and Best Art for Hicksville
Prix d’Alph’Art (France, 2002): Best Album and Critics’ Prize for Hicksville
Harvey Award (USA, 2002): for Atlas
Barcelona Comics Festival (Spain, 2004): Best Graphic Novel for Hicksville
Attilio Micheluzzi Award (Italy, 2004): Best Graphic Novel for Hicksville

 

 


 

 

Video

2016
Simon Bowden talks to 2016 Laureate, Dylan Horrocks, about news of his Laureate Award and what the future might hold.
1966
Born in Auckland, New Zealand.
1980
First paid cartooning gig, drawing ongoing comic strip 'Zap Zoney' for New Zealand children's magazine Jabberwocky.
1985
Draws weekly comic strip 'Tisco George' for Craccum (Auckland University student newspaper).
1984-1989
Contributes comics to Razor Magazine (edited by Cornelius Stone) and Fox Comics (Australia), and others.
1992-1997
Writes and draws Pickle, a 10-issue comic book series published by Black Eye Books in Canada, nominated for various awards.
1995-1997
Contributes a weekly comic strip, 'Milo's Week,' to the NZ Listener.
1998
Hicksville, graphic novel published by Black Eye Books in Canada (later published by Drawn & Quarterly, Victoria University Press and others), nominated for various awards in USA, France, Italy and Spain.
1998
Nga Pakiwaituhi o Aotearoa: New Zealand Comics, an exhibition and catalogue assembled for the International Comics & Animation Festival in USA.
2001
Better Luck Next Century, a collection of political cartoons, published by Top Shelf Comics.
2001-2006
Writes and draws Atlas, 3-issue comic book series published by Drawn & Quarterly in Canada, nominated for a Harvey Award.
2001-2003
Writes Hunter: The Age of Magic, 25-issue monthly comic book series published by Vertigo (DC Comics).
2002
Winner of a Will Eisner Comics Industry Award.
2003-2004
Writes Batgirl monthly comic book series for DC Comics.
2006
University of Auckland/Creative NZ Writer in Residence.
2006
Travels to France as one of 12 New Zealand writers chosen for Les Belles Étrangères festival.
2009
Collaborates with Italian artist Paola Pivi on a 10-metre long drawing, Untitled (sans titre), later exhibited in France, China, etc
2011
'Steam Girl,' prose short story wins the Sir Julius Vogel Award for best novella and appears in various anthologies and languages.
2012
Assembles exhibition of New Zealand comics for the Treviso Comic Book Festival in Italy.
2012
New Zealand Comics and Graphic Novels, a guide to NZ comics creators, published for distribution at the Frankfurt Book Fair.
2013
Curates an exhibition of New Zealand comics for St Paul St Gallery, Auckland.
2014
Incomplete Works, a collection of comics drawn over 30 years, published by Victoria University Press (and others).
2014
Sam Zabel and the Magic Pen, graphic novel published by Victoria University Press (also by Casterman, Fantagraphics Books, and others), nominated for an Eisner Award and others.
2016
Arts Foundation Laureate Award recipient!