The Wendy Award

Drawn & Quarterly. Jul. 2024. 248p. ISBN 9781770467415. pap. $22.95. F
Scott’s “millennial artist with an undefinable art practice” returns (following Wendy’s Revenge) in this scathingly funny satire about the struggle to create artwork that expresses personal experience and a distinct point of view while also somehow appealing to a large general audience. The story opens with Wendy living in Toronto, working on a successful autobiographical comic strip inspired by her experiences in the city’s raucous nightlife and dating scene. She’s totally professionally and personally fulfilled and brimming with confidence that she always will be thus from now on, especially after being named one of five finalists for a prestigious national art prize. Unfortunately, Wendy’s bubble quickly bursts while she’s preparing new work to show in a gallery exhibition alongside the art of her fellow finalists, which triggers a terrible case of self-doubt and the fear that she’s doomed to be exposed as a talentless impostor. Making matters worse, a chaotic interview to promote the prize causes Wendy to become the subject of public ridicule, sending her into a self-destructive spiral that threatens to derail her career and destroy her personal life.
VERDICT Scott’s nuanced characterization and bitingly humorous insight into the contemporary art world result in an incisive comedy examining an artist’s struggle for authenticity.
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