August 06, 2007

Culture at the 2007 Comic-Con

Forgot to mention that we did find one sign of Indian culture at the San Diego Comic-Con. I mean the word "sign" literally. One vendor was selling old advertising signs and labels from the early 20th century. Some of them featured Indians (Chief Joseph, a "squaw," Indians paddling a canoe) selling products such as fruit, vegetables, and tobacco. They were mounted on cardboard and priced at $5-10 each.

The vendor also had cheap knockoffs of George Catlin's famous Indians paintings. These yellowing pages were printed in the 1870s and are probably collectibles themselves. They were $10 apiece.

This demonstrates what I've always said: that yesterday's paintings and advertisements are akin to today's movies and comics. They're both examples of Indians depicted in the popular media. When you think about it, it's not surprising you'd find the Catlin prints and advertising labels at Comic-Con, for four days the pop-culture center of the universe.

For more on the subject, see Thoughts on the San Diego Comic-Con 2000+.

Below:  A typical advertising label (not one we saw at the Con).

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