Chris Ware loves Book Table

Celebrated Oak Park artist designs tote bag for local bookstore

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By Timothy Inklebarger

Staff Reporter

Do you like books? I mean real books that have pages that you can turn? Do you love the graphic novel art of Chris Ware?

If your answer is no to either of these questions, well, maybe you need to reassess.

But if your answer is yes, as it should be, then today is your lucky day because the Book Table, 1045 Lake St., has released its new tote bags with a design by Ware himself.

Ware, creator of the Acme Novelty Library series, Jimmy Corrigan: The Smartest Kid on Earth, numerous New Yorker covers, and the award-winning Building Stories, has contributed a design for the bag, which reconfigures the store's name into a 3-dimensional structure that serves as the store.

Ware is featured in the illustration, along with Book Table owners Jason Smith and Rachel Weaver, and several other shoppers.

It's not the first time Ware has contributed his genius to help out a local business or cause. He's helped raise funds by donating poster designs to the Historical Society of Oak Park-River Forest and, in 2013, Ware contributed an illustration for the Book Table's gift cards.

Smith said in a press release that Ware told him he almost featured the store in one of his graphic novels. The story, which involved the store being held up at gunpoint, never saw the light of day though because Ware worried it might make the business seem unsafe.

"That's so typical of Chris to worry that featuring us in his work would cause us to lose business," Smith said in the press release.

CONTACT: tim@oakpark.com

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Mary Pellegrini  

Posted: September 19th, 2017 6:29 AM

I love the Book Table and admire Jason and Rachel. Speaking from a retail background that started on Lake Street, I think they are two of the best retailers I have had the privilege to meet! I am proud to live in a town with three independent book stores.

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