I Walk in Darkness: A Trilogy
by José Luis Medina.
Includes the comics:
Joaquín Guerra, 2008.
The Man with No Name, 2012.
I Walk Alone in Darkness, 2013.
10″ x 7.5″
black and white with color cover and back
About I Walk Alone in Darkness
I Walk in Darkness: A Trilogy is the first volume of José Luis Medina’s artwork and the first foray into comic publishing for UnionDocs. It might seem strange for a Center for Documentary Art to take on such a project. Medina’s beautifully rendered, spiraling trilogy is obviously fiction and perhaps closer kin to surrealist/noir cinema than to the truth-seeking methods of most documentarians. We learned of José Luis Medina through Living Los Sures, a multi-faceted and ever-unfolding documentary about the Southside neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn, also known as Los Sures. José Luis Medina is a member of this community and during work on the project, Olivia Koski, a fellow in our collaborative studio, met him and became fascinated with his artwork. The feeling spread.
For a few years we followed, page by page, as José posted his comics online. The complexity and intelligence behind his vision became more and more clear. We were thrilled when Medina accepted our invitation to collaborate on the creation of a mural for the UnionDocs building, one of the many components of Living Los Sures. We decided it was absolutely necessary to accompany this unveiling of public art with an opportunity for others to explore Medina’s work. So, we took on the task of helping to bring this very special volume together. I Walk in Darkness: A Trilogy rewards the attentive reader. Locals may recognize details of Los Sures from the 1970s, many of which remain today; social clubs, stoops and familiar skylines. References to film, the author’s family and favorite artists also abound. The rich setting and allusions to Medina’s life offer a specific context but are not the principal monuments of this shadowy landscape. The story is more primal than personal. It operates in the space of a wandering mind, texturing the experience of memory, dream, guilt, trauma and nightmare.
Duality and double-take create circles and open questions. For some of the answers, we’ll just have to wait for the next episode.
About José Luis Medina
José Luis Medina was born in Puerto Rico, he has lived in Los Sures most of his life. As an activist he painted political banners and flyers, wrote and produced layouts for Claridad (a pro-independence of Puerto Rico newspaper) and later, he and Jaime Estades directed a bilingual community newspaper, El Pitirre! At the age of 50, he reinvented himself as a cartoonist and has produced three comic books (Joaquín Guerra, The Man with No Name and I Walk Alone in Darkness). I Walk in Darkness: A Trilogy, is Medina’s first publication, released in June 2015.
Learn more about José Luis Medina and his work for the Living Los Sures Project. Stop by UnionDocs at 322 Union Avenue to see the 3 story mural that he drew for the facade of our building based on the life of local long standing Los Sures resident, Cuso Soto.