Nova Scotia based Conundrum Press’s summer line press proudly declares they are “stepping up their game”, rolling out five titles at TCAF. Three authored by Doug Wright Award winners and two by featured guests of the festival.
One of those guests is Michel Rabagliati. His latest translated work, Paul Joins the Scouts will be a heavy hitter for Conundrum likely, especially given the added attention of his DWA nomination this year for The Song of Roland. Also from the BDANG line is Obituary Man. The third book to be translated from the French from Quebec City native Philippe Girard.
Another featured guest, this one appearing for the first time in Canada is Hong Kong artist Chihoi. In support of his first book in English, The Library. A book of Kafkaesque stories, it’s the inaugural release under Conundrum International Imprint.
The Grey Museum is a galactic romp from former Doug Wright Award winner, Toronto native and recently, record shop proprietor, Lorenz Peter. And Science Fiction is the follow-up to Joe Ollmann’s widely popular Mid-Life which was nominated for a Doug Wright Award. Montreal-based Ollmann won the Doug Wright Award in 2007 for This Will All End in Tears.
Conundrum & Koyama Press are teaming up for the launch of two graphic novels, both by artists being published in English for the first time. The Library by Chihoi will be presented with Journal by Julie Delporte at Librairie Drawn & Quarterly on Tuesday, May 14, at 7PM.
Conundrum’s publisher Andy Brown says he thinks it’s a significant event in part because it brings the three prominent Canadian publishers Conundrum, Koyama, and Drawn & Quarterly together under one roof for a day, ”…all the Canadian comics publishers together in harmony”.
21.Mar.2013 The 2013 Doug Wright Awards short-list
A feature event at TCAF, The Doug Wright Awards announced their 2013 finalists this morning.
The 9th annual awards short-list includes established creators, past winners, and many first-time nominees. They also unveiled the official poster drawn by 2012 Best Book Award winner & 2013 nominee, Ethan Rilly.
The 2013 Doug Wright Award nominees for Best Book are:
- Lose #4 by Michael DeForge (Koyama Press)
- By This Shall You Know Him by Jesse Jacobs (Koyama Press)
- The Song of Roland by Michel Rabagliati (Conundrum Press)
- Pope Hats #3 by Ethan Rilly (AdHouse Books)
- Wax Cross by Tin Can Forest (Koyama Press)
The 2013 Doug Wright Spotlight Award nominees are:
(a.k.a. “The Nipper” recognizing talents worthy of wider recognition)
- Nina Bunjevac for Heartless (Conundrum Press)
- Brandon Graham for King City (Image Comics)
- Patrick Kyle for Black Mass, Distance Mover, Wowee Zonk #4
- George Walker for The Mysterious Death of Tom Thomson (The Porcupine’s Quill)
- Eric Kostiuk Williams for Hungry Bottom Comics
The 2013 Pigskin Peters Award nominees are:
(Recognizing the best in experimental and avant-garde comics)
- Hamilton Illustrated by David Collier (Wolsak & Wynn)
- Hellberta #2 and “Sir Softly” from š! #12, by Michael Comeau
- Michael DeForge, Larry Eisenstein, Jesse Jacobs, Mark Laliberte (editor), Marc Ngui, Ethan Rilly, Tin Can Forest and Magda Trzaski for 4PANEL, a special comics features in Carousel Magazine #28 and #29
- Ginette Lapalme for “So, what should we do with ourselves?…” from Wowee Zonk #4 and “Little Stump” in š! #12
The Giants of the North: The Canadian Cartoonists Hall of Fame announce that the Quebec cartoonist Albert Chartierwill be posthumously inducted uring the May 11, 2013 ceremony in Toronto. Chartier died in 2004 ending an extraordinary career that lasted more than 65 years during which he drew several popular comic strips including Séraphin, Les Canadiens and Onésime. Onésime is his most well-known work, running for 59 years from November 1943 until June 2002.
About the DWA: Founded in 2004, The Doug Wright Awards recognize the best in English-language comics (or translations of French) by Canadian cartoonists. Now in their ninth year, the Awards will be handed out at a ceremony at Toronto’s Marriott Bloor Yorkville Hotel on Saturday May 11 from 7:00 – 9:00 pm.
The Doug Wright Awards will also be holding a fundraising auction of original art this spring by more than a dozen well-known Canadian cartoonists, including Chester Brown, Seth, Michael DeForge, Michael Cho, John Martz, David Collier and David Boswell.
The finalists for the 2013 Doug Wright Awards were chosen from a long list of more than 120 100 works and submissions published during the 2012 calendar year. This year’s nominating committee included Jerry Ciccoritti, Seth, Bryan Munn, Chris Randle and Sean Rogers.
For more information about the DWAs:
Media inquiries: Shireen Cuthbert firstname.lastname@example.org
17.Jan.2013 TCAF Announces Feature Guests, Reveals Poster
Art Spiegelman Heads List
by BK Munn
The Toronto Comic Arts Festival has announced its initial slate of featured guests for 2013. Taking place May 11th and 12th 2013 at the Toronto Reference Library, this year’s show will feature an international group of headliners including Art Spiegelman (Maus, Co-Mix), Francoise Mouly (Art Editor of The New Yorker, Founder of Toon Books, Co-Founder RAW Magazine), Taiyo Matsumoto (Tekkon Kinkreet, Sunny), Raina Telgemeier (Smile, Drama), Blutch (So Long, Silver Screen), Gengoroh Tagame (The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame), Dash Shaw (BodyWorld, New School), and Canada’s own Maurice Vellekoop (Gloria Badcock). Vellekoop also designed this year’s poster, celebrating the 10th anniversary of the festival.
The 10th anniversary is the subject of an art show at the Steamwhistle Gallery featuring contributions from every past guest of the festival on the subject of comics and Toronto. TCAF events will also include The World Of Taiyo Matsumoto exhibit, and the debuts of new books by Matsumoto, Shaw, and Spiegelman. PictureBox will also debut The Passion of Gengoroh Tagame: The Master of Bara Manga, designed by Chip Kidd and introduced by literary icon Edmund White, billed as “a collection of works by [the] undisputed gay bondage comics master.”
by BK Munn
The Toronto Comic Arts Festival will be exhibiting at the inaugural Kaigai Manga Festa, dedicated to non-Japanese comics, in Tokyo, Japan on November 18th. The TCAF folks, in the person of director and Japan-ophile Chris Butcher, have made an offer of exhibit space to Canadian cartoonists.
Writes Butcher: “TCAF will be making available exhibition space at Kaigai Manga Festa, for free, to any Canadian cartoonist who has exhibited at TCAF at least once since its inception. Basically, if you can get yourself to Tokyo, we will help you exhibit your comics and promote your work to the more than 40,000 attendees of this event (not to mention international publishers, licensing agents, etc. in attendance!). We will also probably do things like organize group dinners and teach you how to ride the train, that sort of thing, but the big thing is: Come promote your work and further your career in Tokyo.”
The Kaigai Manga Festa is festival-within-a-festival being held within Comitia, a comics event with an alt/art comics focus and attendance of 40,000 (TCAF had an attendance of 18000 in 2012). Sounds like fun! Butcher has tons more info and a FAQ at the TCAF site.
Been meaning to post about Cecil Castellucci’s new book The Year of the Beasts, with one of my favorite comics artists Nate Powell.
I’m in the midst of reading The Silence of Our Friends now.
The Year of the Beasts is an interesting sounding experiment in terms of formalism. Combining chapters in pure text alternating with ones in sequential art.
I’ve not read it yet but i’m excited to check it out. Both authors are very accomplished storytellers so if anyone is going to make that mix work. If you’ve read it let us know what you think in the comments! From what can be gleaned at a pass online a lot of people are liking it. Here’s a selection of linkage to drill down a little on the book with. They are getting a pretty good spread on Goodreads.com. Shelf-awareness.com says “Castellucci’s prose brims with wise observations about the all-consuming feelings of adolescence“. San Diego CityBeat posted “Powell’s loose, black and white illustrations bring this strange world to life in evocative fashion. But what’s most impressive about Castellucci’s storytelling is her manipulation of time and metaphor to create an ending that is poignant, powerful and unexpected”. Yareview.net posted a cool mutual interview about the creation of the book here. And comicsbeat.com listed it as one of The Hottest Graphic Novels of 2012!.
I was inspired/reminded to finally post about it when notice of her new short story Brother. Prince. Snake on Tor.com, which I extra like the posting of for it’s wonderful dragon illustration by Sam Burley.
21.Jun.2012 TCAF Announces 2013 Dates
by BK Munn
Festival Director Chris Butcher announced the 2013 dates for the Toronto Comic Arts Festival yesterday. Next year’s event will be held over the Mothers’ Day weekend, Saturday May 11th and Sunday May 12th. TCAF will also host another Librarian & Educator event as it did in 2012, this time on Friday May 10th. Part of the run-up to the festival will be a TCAF 10th anniversary party on March 29th.
It’s worth noting that the announced dates do not conflict with Free Comic Book Day, which is scheduled for May 4, 2013.
25.May.2012 The Jason Turner TCAF 2012 Comic
I missed this last week, posted May 17th. A Journal comic by snappy dressing cartoonist Jason Turner, about his TCAF 2012 experience - Jason is a man with hap, hap, happy feet! I tried as well to work up the steam to dance that night at Lee’s, also was my 90′s haunt, and the Dance Cave upstairs. Sadly the body would not abide, 4 days of walking all over the city had done me in. But Jason does not give himself enough credit! That man dove in with great gusto! I saw him hit the boards more than once! He he. Nice comic, go read and then check out his other stuff!
11.May.2012 Sea and be Scene at TCAF 2012
Lot of stuff i missed at the show even having two days to wander around. This clip, just people who come from the east coast! impressive…
09.May.2012 Conundrum Press TCAF report.
Conundrum seems to be maturing into a very strong
independent publisher, sounds like they had a great show.
I wish I had enough cash to go crazy and buy everything they put out this year.
Damn, didn’t even register Nina’s book was there, missed my chance!
Was too busy chatting with friends at their table to pay proper attention to the spread!
Rats. Andy has posted a short upbeat report and some good photos of the show, check it out…
“Well TCAF this year was the bestest ever! Everyone seemed to have $20 bills in their pockets and were willing to spend. The quality of work throughout the room was unprecedented. There was actually a line up at the Conundrum table! We sold out of all our debut titles!” – Read the full post here.
Catching up with Squidface & The Meddler.
They interviewed Jesse Jacobs & published a story by Britt Wilson leading up to TCAF,
who both presented new books at the show.
08.May.2012 Salgood Sam’s TCAF 2012 report!
This is a truncated version, as I had already posted a lot of the audio stuff before so I just linked to that content here. If you want to read the full version check it out here.
Recorded some of the sights and sounds of various events on my trip to Toronto for TCAF this year.
I was a tourist this time for a change, so was able to take in a lot of stuff. Great fun and got to spend some quality time with lots of old friends. Also met and talked a few times briefly with Fabio Moon which was nice. Been an admirer of his and his brother’s work for years. Ran into him last at the wrap party but was so wasted I probably gave him a funny impression! Ah well, they seem like very laid-back guys. Hope to chat with them under more calm, less profession-defined circumstances one day. Also had a few good short chats with Tom Neely, enjoyed a nice diner with James Turner, Brian Evinou, and Noel Tuazon. Also had a nice dinner on the last night with my primary collaborator here on Sequential Bryan Munn. We only see each other in person a few times a year so that was great. Met Jason Bradshaw in person finally and got a full set of his Boredom pays minis including he said the last copy left ever of his first issue. Had a warm chat on the TCAF floor with Artist and printer Tyrone McCarthy. Oh I could go on and on probably but can’t recall all the names I should right now so lets get on with it. Here’s my Video log, links to stuff, and some of the audio I recorded over the course of the 4 days. For the full experience make sure to have annotations turned on when you play the clip.
In order of appearance and with links as follows…
A few highlights of the first instalment of The Comic Book Lounge’s On the couch [should that not be chesterfield?] with Ty Templeton! His guests were Mark Askwith (producer, InnerSpace), Award-winning cartoonist Scott Chantler (Three Thieves, Two Generals), artist & designer Ken Lashley (Blackhawks), and Will Pascoe (director, Lost Heroes Movie).
And I got roped into this one too at the end. Sorry about my quite voice and poor rhetoric, i don’t level well in a setting like that, I have to be right on top of the mic to be audible most of the time. very low voice and I’m not in the habit of projecting it a lot.
That’s followed but a good 12 or so min of table porn, i tried to scan everything that was on display at TCAF. I missed a room in the back and a few other small spots but otherwise this is just about ever inch of exhibitors spreads, shot in the last hour of the show on Sunday.
Some shots of my Haul from the trip, 22 books I traded for, was given or bought. Look for a nice clean shot of that at the end of the post here.
Some footage of the kick off event, Jeff Smith, Gabriel Ba, and Fabio Moon in conversation moderated by Mark Askwith! Listen to it here.
And last, some snaps of the drawing jam between Becky Cloonan & Zach Worton at the Third Annual Official TCAFête.
It was all a blast! This is just a tiny bit of what I saw and did. TCAF gets bigger every year and this is my first time just going to hang out and take in the sights [I've exhibited I think every year since 2005?] It’s a hell of a lot more fun to attend than exhibit I have to say.
Max here, just got back home to Montreal from TCAF in Toronto.
Waiting for my own half hour video journal to upload i thought i’d gather up some of the various posts and reports i’ve seen so far over the weekend about the big show. Up top is a very slick looking tour of it all put together by Ryan Couldrey.
Item[s]: The Doug Wright Awards got lots of press, the Gazette noted Aislin’s induction into Giants of the North, the Canadian Cartooning Hall of Fame. Yahoo news asked Who was Doug Wright and why is there an award named after him? The CBC noted the winners in their Arts & Entertainment section, and the National ran this report. And the QUILLBLOG posted about the awards a couple times.
Item: The QUILLBLOG also ran some other TCAF stories. A two part series called Killer comics. Part one covers Koyama Publishing and Conundrum Press, part two Editions Tchai, Top Shelf, and Jeff Lemire! And this post about Guy Delisle’s Jerusalem: Chronicles from the Holy City.
Item: The Torontoist posted a couple of lists of Five. One near the end of the even, of Five Up-and-Coming Cartoonists they discovered at TCAF 2012. And one at the start by our own D.Hains of “Five Artists to Catch at TCAF this Weekend“. Both are still good lists to look at, you might just discover something!
Item: Eugene Zhilinsky posted his live sketches from TCAF on the Editions Tchai blog here.
Item: The comic book lounge ran some FCBD events in parallel with TCAF including a new late night panel/talk-show/bar room after-show chat thing called ON THE COUCH with Ty Templeton that will be posted online at some point [look for some highlights in my video journal including me getting called up to the couch for some questions]. And the nights talk was wrapped with the announcement of this years Joe Shuster Award nominees. The lists for the different categories are going up on their site a bit at a time right now, scroll around to find them all.
Item: BlogTO posted a photo report about Kid Koala’s Space Cadet tour, looks like it was quite the visual spectacle as well as an auditory one.
Item: The Ottawa Citizen ran a story on the 4th about “the rise of highbrow comics”. Sounds a bit to my ear almost like a “comics are not just for kids” piece really, but it’s all good. They spotlight the work of Zak Sally & Jeff Lemire.
Item: The IGN blog posted a photo report of their blogers visit to TCAF here.
Item: An to wrap it for this post, ‘cus you’r going to be a while getting through these, The National Post has run Q&As every year with new up and comers appearing at TCAF, this year there are a LOT of them.
MariNaomi, Leah V Wishnia, Benjamin Marra, Jesse Moynihan, Natalie Nourigat, Kristina Stipetic,
Beth Hetland, David Blumenstein, Simon Moreton, Jen Breach, Andrew Fulton, Leland Myrick,
Ed Choy, Matthew Holm, Maxeem Konrardy, Farley Katz, Matthew Sheret, Alison Acton,
Nina Bunjevac, Ryan Dunlavey, Larry Hancock, Michael Cherkas, Emi Lenox, Most Ancient,
Christopher Baldwin, The Devastator, Eugene Zhilinsky and Tatyana Yuditskaya, Deanna Echanique,
Maiji/Mary Huang, Paul Gilligan, Christine Redfern, Robert Ullman,
Mandy Ord, Jose-Louis Bocquet, Kris Mukai & Kris Pearn!
06.May.2012 Doug Wright Award winners for 2012!
Canadian Comics big night and one of the spotlight events of TCAF, the Doug Wright Awards!
Undoubtedly the awards were documented but I failed to make it to the show myself this year. Was enjoying dinner a little too far from Jackman Hall to make it in time. Sorry folks!
First chance we get we’ll post photos or other media as it becomes available. But for now, here are this years winners…
The show was hosted by writer, journalist and broadcaster Geoff Pevere.
And the ceremony featured an on-stage discussion between writer Rick Salutin and political cartoonist Terry “Aislin” Mosher who is this years inductee for the Giants of the North: The Canadian Cartoonists Hall of Fame.
Best Book went to Kate Beaton, for Hark! A Vagrant, published by Drawn and Quarterly. This is her second Doug Wright Award. Previously Beaton’s self-published Never Learn Anything About History won the 2009 Doug Wright Award for Best Emerging Talent. And And Hark! A Vagrant won the 2011 Harvey Award for Best Online Comics Work, after being nominated in the same category the year before, and was nominated for a Joe Shuster Awards in 2009 and 2010!
Formally the emerging talent award, the Doug Wright Spotlight (a.k.a. “The Nipper”) recognizing talent deserving of wider recognition went to Ethan Rilly for Pope Hats #2, published by AdHouse Books. Previously Ethan won the 2010 Gene Day Award for Self-Publishing for Pope Hats #1.
The 2012 winners were decided by a jury that included: visual artist Shary Boyle, cartoonist John Martz (A Doug Wright Award Best Emerging Talent nominee in 2010 and Pigskin Peters Award nominee in 2008), book artist and professor George Walker and Julie Traves, deputy arts editor for The Globe and Mail.
Speaking on behalf of the jury, Shary Boyle praised Beaton’s book. “The world of comics can be a sequestered and dusty place,” she said. “As the comic community bemoans its shrinking readership and dying forms, Beaton rises up and throws open the doors to a whole new audience – welcoming one and all with her generous vision and sense of sophisticated, inclusive playfulness.”
Jurist John Martz had this to say about Ethan Rilly (aka Hartley Linn):
“Hartley is a cartoonist who takes his time to get it right, and what we as fans might lose in quantity, we most definitely gain in quality. This scrutiny and attention to detail did not go unnoticed by the jury, who recognize and applaud Hartley’s skilled draughtsmanship and the maturity of his writing. It can be no easy task to write a story about an introspective Toronto law clerk, and have it be so compelling, so rewarding to study, and be filled with such warmth. It is most deserving of this award.”
Jeet Heer, of the Wright Awards nominating committee which chooses the annual Pigskin Peters Award, described Hellberta as “Many things — a pastiche of superhero comic, a political satire, a post-apocalyptic fable – all melded together to form a single nightmarish vision. Michael Comeau brings to this tradition an energetic line, a fertile imagination, and the courage to put his most outrageous ideas on paper.”
“One of Daniel Clowes’ strangest creations, The Death Ray, satirizes classic superheroes, creating not only a unique deconstruction of superhero tropes, but an indictment of the fans of those escapist comics. Death Ray is the story of a teenage outcast-turned-vigilante who is almost immediately corrupted by his newfound abilities. It is notable for how thoroughly it debunks any of the presumed illusions of superhero stories. Unlike Marvel characters’ origins, which are typically tied to their selfless acts, (such as Daredevil rescuing a blind man away from a speeding truck), The Death Ray’s Andy acquires his superhuman strength when he starts smoking. Clowes’ protagonist has an immature, reductionist sense of right and wrong, and becomes increasingly detached from anybody who can help him understand the responsibilities that come with his power. While other stories provide readers with escapist fantasy in which good invariably triumphs over evil, the Death Ray is far more nihilistic, and suggests a darker side to that appeal.
With this essay, I will place The Death Ray on a continuum of superhero stories. I will also discuss prior and subsequent efforts of comics creators to deconstruct superhero narratives. While other creators, such as Alan Moore, developed their seminal critiques of superheroes after decades of writing them, Clowes identifies superheroes as a staple of “mainstream” comics and describes his work as a deliberate counter-balance to that mainstream. Superhero subversions such as Kick-Ass depict their characters with colorful, dynamic styles and invariably include moments where characters must make noble sacrifices, but Clowes’ artistic and narrative decisions deliberately downplay dramatic release, denying readers any sort of catharsis.” – Edward Hornick
Edward Hornick is a graduate of Kenyon College in Gambier, Ohio and the Salt Institute for Documentary Studies in Portland, Maine. A lifelong comics reader, he presented on Truth Serum, Achewood, and Evan Dorkin at past New Narrative conferences.
Noir and the Fantastic in Comics. TCAF 2012 KICK-OFF EVENT! Jeff Smith, Gabriel Ba, and Fabio Moon in conversation moderated by Mark Askwith. In The Bram and Bluma Appel Salon
Marni Stanley teaches English and Women’s Studies at Vancouver Island University in Nanaimo, British Columbia, Canada. Her academic research and publication areas include Nineteenth Century Women Travellers, television, cinema, and graphic narrative.
In a Queer Time & Place Judith Halberstam argues that metronormativity—the assumption that one can only be out and proud in urban spaces, and that rural and small town homosexuals should be pitied—dominates in gay and lesbian literature. The metronormative narrative sees the city as a space of liberation and formation of identity. But urban environments have their own threats, and the power of identity politics can make urban cliques exclusionary as well as welcoming. How do gay and lesbian comic artists use the urban spaces associated with the enabling of identity—bars, sex shops, the neighborhood—to explore the complexity of finding community in the complexity of urban space? Examples will be drawn from the work of some of the following: Ariel Schrag, Leanne Franson, Eric Orner, Tim Barela, Tim Fish, Alison Bechdel, and Howard Cruse.
Sequential’s own David Hains moderated this panle with creators Kate Beaton & Bryan Lee O’Malley. Part of the Bodies/City: A Symposium conference the panel tied that event with the next days New Narrative V presentations [more exclusively comics related than the first days events]. Conversation ran the gambit from what got them hooked on comics to collaborative work with others.
28.Apr.2012 2012 Wright Awards Poster by Michael DeForge
The awards are Saturday May 5 in Toronto
15.Apr.2012 C-list – a sunday in comics
Item: - Dustin Harbin this week reposted his journal comics this past week documenting his two trips to attend the Doug Wright Awards all in one place along with an essay about what he thinks would make for the kind of awards program comics in general, from a US perspective, needs.
Item: - 20 days left till TCAF.