This weekend we head North to our majestic neighbor, Canada, for the Toronto Comic Arts Festival. Two full days of panels, exhibitors, events, and of course, comics art! We'll be rocking it at tables 162, 163, and 164, surrounded by some of our favorite artists. On Saturday, doors open are open from 9 AM - 5 PM, and Sunday doors run from 11 AM - 5 PM. This event is FREE to the public! FREE. What else do you need to know? Well here's some panels and guest info to entice you just in case.
11 AM - Spotlight: Lorenzo Mattotti Join one of the masters of modern art comics, Lorenzo Mattotti (Hansel & Gretel, The Raven, Fires) in this career-spanning interview with Stephane Beaujean (Kaboom Magazine, Festival Internationale de la Bande Dessinee d'Angouleme)
2:45 PM - Spotlight: Ed Luce
Moderator: Andrew Wheeler
4:00 PM - Comics Reportage in the Internet Age Short, non-fiction reportage is making waves on the Internet in 2015. Short, sharp, personal comics pieces can get to the heart of an idea quickly and in a way that was previously only the domain of political gag cartoons. Eleri Harris, associate editor of The Nib, is joined by an incredible array of contemporary cartoonists including Jess Fink (Chester 5000), Dan Berry (Make Then Tell), Ed Piskor (Hip Hop Family Tree), and Jon Rosenberg (Scenes from a Multiverse) to discuss what it takes to make timely and relevant reportage on the Internet.
12:15 PM - Gay Comics Art Japan with Gengoroh Tagame
Gengoroh Tagame joins his publishers Anne Ishii and Graham Kolbeins of MASSIVE and Leyla Aker of Viz Media/SuBLime BL Manga, to talk about the crossover context of queer manga, the hidden wealth of gay manga and the availability and visibility of queer art in Japan today. Moderator: Anne Ishii
12:15 PM - Art of the Travelogue The comics form lends itself beautifully to carnets de voyage, documents of trips, times, and places. Meet five of the foremost authors working in this genre, covering important, unexpected, and incredible trips, in comics. Featuring Lucy Knisley (Dispalcement), Boulet (Notes), Abby Denson (Cool Japan Guide), Kate Lavut (CHiCO), Kate Beaton (Hark, A Vagrant!), and Oliver East (Trains Are...Mint). Moderated by Johanna Draper Carlson (Comics Worth Reading)
2:45 PM - Editorial Illustration
While deceptively similar on the surface, comics and editorial illustration are two fields requiring different formal skill sets, creative attentions, and expressive uses. Acclaimed illustrators discuss the subtle nuances of working in one medium versus the other, and the effect of each on their professional careers. Featuign Penelope Bagieu, Eleanor Davis, and Kagan McLeod. Moderated by Rachel Kahn
Learning Center 1 12 PM - Pressing the Limits of Representation In this spirited conversation, contributors from every sphere of comics creation and discussion explor the limits and parameters of content in contemporary comics. With Professor Andrew Lesk (University of Toronto), Josh Simmons (House, Black River), C. Spike Trotman (Smut Peddler), Calvin Reid (Publishers Weekly), and James Romberger (7 Miles a Second, The Late Child). Moderated by artist and writer Marguerite Van Cook (The Late Child)
12:15 PM - In Conversation: Lucy Knisley and Penelope Bagieu
North American readers may not be familiar with the work of BD author Penelope Bagieu, but she's taken the French comics world by storm with a mix of reality-infused graphic novels, travelogues, editorial illustrations and more. Far more familiar to North American teaders is Lucy Knisley, whose autobiography, memoir, travelogues and reportage have won her a huge fan base. Join these two creators in a special conversation moderated by Heidi MacDonald, as they explore the similarities in their work and travel, and the intersection of memoir and fiction.
2:45 PM - Spotlight on Eleanor Davis
Illustrator and comics author Eleanor Davis is creating some of the most visually unique and expertly crafted comics short stories being produced today. Utterly unlike anything else in the medium, several of her short stories were collected into the critically acclaimed collection How To Be Happy from Fantagraphics Books at the end of 2014, the book topping many 'best-of-the-year' lists. Now, in this feature interview, Eleanor Davis will be interviewed on her work and career.
11:15 am - Spotlight on Charles Burns
Moderated by Stephane Beaujean
12:15 PM - Charles Burns and Killoffer in Conversation
Moderated by Stephane Beaujean
4 PM - Spotlight on Simon Hanselmann! With Special Guests Michael DeForge and Patrick Kyle
TCAF is thrilled to welcome an Australian cartoonist who has taken the medium by storm: Simon Hanselmann! His Megg, Mogg, and Owl strips appear weekly in VICE Magazine, and the collections Megahex from Fantagraphics Books and Life Zone from Space Face Books have topped critics lists, and netted him two Ignatz Awards. In this special presentation, Simon Hanselmann will be joined by cartoonists and friends Michael DeForge and Patrick Kyle, with whom he toured America for 16 weeks, and be interviewed by Stephane Beaujean (Kaboom, Festival Internationale de la Bande Dessinee d'Angouleme). It's going to be incredible.
Hinton Learning Theatre
1 PM - Jason Lutes and Anders Nilsen in Conversation with R. Sikoryak
R. Sikoryak (Masterpiece Comics) animated a conversation between Jason Lutes (Berlin) and Anders Nilsen (Poetry Is Useless) about the pressures and pleasures of negotiating caeers as artists while also teaching art to new generations. This wide-ranging conversation will offer new perspectives on their work, and reveal how generous and thoughtful Anders Nilsen, Jason Lutes, and R. Sikoryak are about their craft.
Daniel Clowes Returns to Fantagraphics Books with Patience
MAY 6, 2015-SEATTLE, WA-Fantagraphics Books is proud to announce Patience, the first all-new, original graphic novel from Daniel Clowes (Ghost World) in more than half a decade. It's the biggest and most ambitious book of a storied career in which he's received an Academy Award nomination, a PEN Award, and multiple Eisner and Harvey Awards.
Patience is an indescribable psychedelic science-fiction love story, veering with uncanny precision from violent destruction to deeply personal tenderness in a way that is both quintessentially "Clowesian," and utterly unique in the author's body of work. This 180-page, full-color story affords Clowes the opportunity to draw some of the most exuberant and breathtaking pages of his life, and to tell his most suspenseful, surprising and affecting story yet.
Fantagraphics and Clowes helped usher in today's golden age of literary graphic novels, as evidenced by the just-released Complete Eightball 1-18. It collects the historic comic book series (1989-2004) in which Clowes classics such as Like a Velvet Glove Cast in Iron and Ghost World were serialized; the latter is the best-selling book in Fantagraphics' history, with twenty editions since its 1997 debut.
"Patience is the best book yet by probably my favorite cartoonist ever," said Fantagraphics associate publisher Eric Reynolds, "and I can't wait for people to have the chance to not take my word for it."
A full release of Patience in March 2016 will be prefaced with select events beginning in the months preceding release. Details t.b.a.
This week on comiXology, we present all manners of terror!
Josh Simmons returns with Black River, his first full-length graphic novel since 2007's acclaimed House. A group of women, one man, and two dogs attempt to make their way through a post-apocalyptic world in search of a city that supposedly still has electricity and some sort of civilization. Along the way, they go to a comedy club, take a drug called "Gumdrop", and encounter gangs of men who are fools, lunatics, and murderous sadists. Wrap your trembling fingers tightly around your personal reading device because this book can be yours for $8.99.
"Josh Simmons has concocted a hellish world in which madwomen roam a post-apocalyptic landscape — but its battle scars are nothing compared to the self-obliterating hell of their own minds. A horrifying, unforgettable vision." — Kier-La Janisse (author of House of Psychotic Women)
Also, slinking from our backlist back alleys comes the penultimate issue of Dungeon Quest Book 3.
Weapons and armor upgrades abound as Joe Daly presents a whole new level of bizarre comedy, rousing adventure, and ass-kicking action. Issue #11 is staged in front of fantastic backdrops replete with strange vegetation, ancient ruins, and steampunk imagery. Become part of the mission for only $1.99!
Minneapolis, MN - Black River has been rattling bones up and down the coast with its release. Which means it'll fit right in at Boneshaker Books in Minneapolis tonight! This volunteer run book store and community space is the bees knees, and we're so excited that they're hosting Josh Simmons and 2D Cloud's Nic Breutzman for a signing that will begin at 7 PM.
Wednesday, May 6th
Dubuque, IA - Party town USA just happens to by Dubuque, Iowa. Don't believe me? Just look at that poster by Victor Cayro! Monks Kaffee is throwing a comics rager in honor of Josh Simmons and Black River. They'll be joined by guests Becca Kacanda and Victor Cayro, and special music guests. In addition to signing books, there'll be a screening of three short films by Josh. Festivities kick off around 9 PM!
Thursday, May 7th
New York, NY - What can I say that this amazing poster hasn't already said? I'll just throw my 2 cents in by telling you that if you have the ability to go to any of these events, do it! From 6-8 PM at the publishing non-profit, Printed Matter, Ed Luce will be signing copies of the Wuvable Oaf collection. Printed Matter feels like a New York institution, which is of course why they're moving to a bigger and better location. This will be one of the last times to catch them in their original spot, and what a great send off to have Luce and Oaf there to celebrate!
Chicago, IL - Next stop for Josh Simmons and his wayward books is Quimby's! One of the finest independent bookstores the midwest has to offer, Quimby's will will open it's doors to Black River and its creator. If you find yourself Chicago bound, or maybe you live there already, get on over to Quimby's at 7 PM to get a signed copy of Black River, a dope black light poster, a beautiful print, and a look of approval from your father, the one you've always wanted.
Saturday, May 9th - Sunday, May 10th
Toronto, ON - All weekend long our great neighbors to the North will be hosting the annual Toronto Comic Art Festival, or TCAF, at the awesome Toronto Reference Library. And Fantagraphics will be on hand to sell you books, say nice things about your hair, and give you high-fives (but mostly sell you books). Check out our full breakdown of Fanta at TCAF, with our signing schedule, where you can see our artists on panels, and where to find us. This event is FREE to the public!
Monday, May 11th
Dearborn, MI - The good times continue to roll this week with a stop at Green Brain Comics in Dearborn, Michigan on the Black River tour. If you can't get to the mind-altering post-apocalyptic comics, then get the mind-altering post-apocalyptic comics to come to you! Beginning at 5:30 PM, they'll be showing Josh's hand crafted films, with the signing to immediately follow.
Seattle, WA - It's undeniable the influence that Harvey Kurtzman has had on an entire generation of cartoonists, humorists, and people who like to laugh. As the founder of MAD Magazine, his influence has left an indelable mark in American culture. But what about the man himself? The new biography, Harvey Kurtzman: The Man Who Created MAD and Revolutionized Humor in America, by author Bill Schelly has exhaustively researched the man and his career, and is coming to The University Bookstore on May 7th. Join us for a launch party in celebration of the book's release! Schelly will present the must-have new book and discuss the fascinating man behind it.
Festivities kick off at 7 PM. Make sure to stick around after the presentation to get your copy signed by Schelly.
Universty Bookstore 4326 University Way NE Seattle, WA 98105
An 8-page downloadable excerpt of the upcoming release Dörfler is now available for your reading pleasure. Get a glimpse of the dreamy art and dystopian landscapes. Stay tuned for more pre-sale information.
"The Kurdles is a story for all ages with plenty of fun, weirdness and childhood innocence that captivates your imagination and jolts you with some of that nostalgic wonderment that made childhood so grand."
“The biggest stars in black music have been gathered together in this very handsomely designed and informative coffee table book… adept at vividly capturing musicians and political figures in revealing off the cuff moments”
Review of Invitation to Openness: The Jazz & Soul Photography of Les McCann 1960-1980 in JAZZ WISE (UK) April 2015 print magazine
“A triumphant comeback.”
Review of Sam Zabel and the Magic Pen by Dylan Horrocks
Saturday also marks the first national Independent Bookstore Day. Following a successful inaugural year in California, Independent Bookstore Day hopes to attract legions of literati the way Record Store Day rallies audiophiles to their local record retailers. No fewer than 17 bookstores in the Seattle area are joining forces in an unprecedented effort to draw attention to the wonders of the written word. Details of this promotion can be found in this story in the current issue of The Stranger, complete with cautionary comments from Fantagraphics Bookstore curator Larry Reid.
Fantagraphics Bookstore is located at 1201 S. Vale Street in the heart of Seattle's historic Georgetown arts community. Open daily 11:30 to 8:00 PM, Sundays until 5:00 PM. Phone 206.658.0110. Wherever you are, please support your local comic book shops and independent bookstores on Saturday.
In the spirit of Hergé's Tintin or Carl Barks' Uncle Scrooge, The Kurdles is an all-ages comic spiced up with a teaspoon of strange. Sally is a teddy bear who gets separated from her owner while on a drive in the country. Desperate to find her way home, she stumbles upon Kurdleton, home to a most peculiar group of characters in the midst of a crisis; their forest house has grown hair, eyes, and a mouth! The creatures work with their new friend to keep Kurdleton from growing legs and running away! Goodin, an animation industry veteran (American Dad, Rugrats), delivers a timeless classic in his debut graphic novel, introducing an unforgettable and charming cast of characters. Printed in an oversized format to showcase Goodin's stunning, hand-painted artwork, The Kurdles will capture the imagination of both parents and children.
In comic book shops now! Click hereto find a store near you and confirm availability.
Humanities Washingon, one of the best and most creative organizations in the state, has chosen Megan Kelso to participate in the 2015-16 Speakers Bureau! What Speakers Bureau does is create a roster of cultural experts and scholars who travel to all corners of the state to provide diverse public presentations that "encourage audiences to think, learn and engage in conversation."
A Seattle cartoonist, Megan Kelso is the creator of Queen of the Black Black , Artichoke Tales, and The Squirrel Mother for Fantagraphics, as well as the "GirlHero" mini comic. Megan's unique lecture that she'll be taking on the road with her is titled "Comics Can Take Us Places". From Humanities Washington:
"What role does a sense of place play in cartoons and comic storytelling? How does place influence the character and plot of these images and the stories they tell? As a visual medium, comics tap directly into our sense of memory, time and place - sometimes without words. In this fascinating presentation, cartoonist Megan Kelso explains how she uses memory, her own life, research, and photo references to create sequential panels that evoke the feeling of a specific, inhabited world. Kelso illustrates the presentation with examples of her work and pictures of places that have inspired her to share how central the role of place is to these popular art forms, particularly from storytelling and social commentary perspectives."
(The Squirrel Mother 2010)
Megan's next stop around the state will be on Saturday, May 2nd in Olympia, WA at the Tumwater Timberland Regional Library in conjuction with the library's comic celebration day. Check back into Megan's blog for updates on where she'll be next. OR if you're a non-profit/school/library etc, find out how you can apply to have Megan speak to your organization!
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