Skip To Content

Art Spiegelman’s Original Stories, Now Shown in a New Light

Breakdowns: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young %@&!”
By Art Spiegelman
Pantheon Books, 72 pages, $27.50.

When the artist Art Spiegelman published “Breakdowns” in 1978, it came out in a limited edition of about 3,000 copies.

As Spiegelman recalls, “There was no demand for a deluxe large-format album that collected the scattered handful of short autobiographical and structurally ‘experimental’ comics I’d made between 1972 and 1977 — except by me.”

Now, 30 years later, things have changed. For one thing, Spiegelman won a Pulitzer Prize in 1992.

Here, the Forward shows a page from 1975, which will be included in a deluxe visual memoir, “Breakdowns: A Portrait of the Artist as a Young %@&*!,” to be published next month by Pantheon.

Spiegelman is the creator of the graphic Holocaust memoirs “Maus” and “Maus II.” Book II was originally serialized in the Forward. He is also the author of “In the Shadow of No Towers,” serialized in the Forward in 2002-2003.

I hope you appreciated this article. Before you go, I’d like to ask you to please support the Forward’s award-winning journalism this Passover.

In this age of misinformation, our work is needed like never before. We report on the news that matters most to American Jews, driven by truth, not ideology.

At a time when newsrooms are closing or cutting back, the Forward has removed its paywall. That means for the first time in our 126-year history, Forward journalism is free to everyone, everywhere. With an ongoing war, rising antisemitism, and a flood of disinformation that may affect the upcoming election, we believe that free and open access to Jewish journalism is imperative.

Readers like you make it all possible. Right now, we’re in the middle of our Passover Pledge Drive and we still need 300 people to step up and make a gift to sustain our trustworthy, independent journalism.

Make a gift of any size and become a Forward member today. You’ll support our mission to tell the American Jewish story fully and fairly. 

— Rachel Fishman Feddersen, Publisher and CEO

Join our mission to tell the Jewish story fully and fairly.

Only 300 more gifts needed by April 30

Republish This Story

Please read before republishing

We’re happy to make this story available to republish for free, unless it originated with JTA, Haaretz or another publication (as indicated on the article) and as long as you follow our guidelines. You must credit the Forward, retain our pixel and preserve our canonical link in Google search.  See our full guidelines for more information, and this guide for detail about canonical URLs.

To republish, copy the HTML by clicking on the yellow button to the right; it includes our tracking pixel, all paragraph styles and hyperlinks, the author byline and credit to the Forward. It does not include images; to avoid copyright violations, you must add them manually, following our guidelines. Please email us at [email protected], subject line “republish,” with any questions or to let us know what stories you’re picking up.

We don't support Internet Explorer

Please use Chrome, Safari, Firefox, or Edge to view this site.