BEST ORIGINAL GRAPHIC NOVEL: THE PROPERTY
The Property by Rutu Modan. Drawn & Quarterly
I’m a longtime fan of Modan’s work (look! A piece from the She Has No Head archives!) and so I love that her graphic novel The Property feels both like everything she’s done before and also different from anything we’ve seen from her. Chronicling the journey of young television producer and her grandmother as they return to Warsaw in an attempt to reclaim property that her grandmother’s family was forced to abandon in the war, Modan tells the tale without any cloying sentimentality and yet it is rife with emotion and poignancy. There is nothing loud or demanding about Modan’s visuals, in fact they are all the more beautiful for their subdued simplicity. The characters here are complex, their motivations layered and their humanity evident for all to behold, they feel wonderfully real and as a result alternately tragic and joyous, not unlike life.