Art Spiegelman and Phillip Johnston are touring with ‘Wordless’

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Wordless, a multimedia collaboration between Art Spiegelman and PHilip Johnston, is touring the country, and may just come to a city near you. If it does, run run to see it!
“Wordless” is, ironically, not wordless at all, but Spiegelman narrating a history of the early, silent woodcut graphic novels of the first half of the 2oth century, works by artists like Frans Masereel, Lynd Ward, Milt Gross, Otto Nuckel, and Si Lewen. The projected comics are accompanied by improvised jazz styling by the a band led by Philip Johnston Band, and the evening is full of information, music and the magic of art and storytelling. YOu can read more about it on a tumblr Spiegelman has set up, (Spiegelman tumbles, says the headline) and here’s an article from SFGate with more thoughts on the venture. And here are the dates:

2015 MoCCA Festival announces first guests and move to a new venue

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After years of awkwardness regarding temperature, comfort and general feng sui, MoCCA is leaving the Lexington Armory for a new venue in 2015. Mocca Fest’s new home is Center 548, which based on the photos on its website, looks like an open, airy modernish venue more like The Puck Building, where MoCCA was born.

Are shifting demographics killing sales of veteran artists at cons?

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Last week Denise Dorman, wife of veteran artist Dave Dorman, who is best known for his excellent painted covers, wrote a post on her blogm which is called Comic Book Wife. The post was titled: The Hidden TRUTH About Comic Book Convention Earnings: For Creators, Have Comic Book Conventions JUMPED THE SHARK? in which she pointed out that sales for her husband were off at several shows this year, and given the costs of exhibiting—hotels booths, food, travel—it made more sense to stay at home and do actual money making work.

Emerald City Con hotels now require a night’s deposit

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I’m not sure if this is a brand new thing, but hotels for the increasingly ginormous Emerald City Comicon how require a night’s deposit on booking. The main hotels are still pretty affordable—even the ultra swanky W Hotel where you get free Bliss facial cleanser and they change the rugs twice a day, is under $150 a night. But I guess given the popularity of the show and the early sell outs, some “hotel room jockeying” is taking place, necessitating a deposit to keep people from stockpiling hotels.

ICv2 Conference announces speakers for “The New Comics Customer”

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Things are changing rapidly in comics retailing, and as we mentioned previously, this year’s ICv2 conference which will be held the day before New York Comic Con kicks off, will examine the “New Comics Customer”:on multiple fronts. (Disclaimer: The Beat is a co-sponser of the event.) The programming and and initial list of  speakers has been announced, […]

NYC’s real super week and TONIGHT’S TO DOs with Eleanor Davis and the CBLDF

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The week between SPX and the Brooklyn Book Festival has evolved into a real “indie super week” on the eastern seaboard, as touring cartoonists barnstormed and socialized at a furious pace. The week perhaps culminated in the Bergen Street Comic/Fantagraphics Brooklyn Book Fest kick off party Saturday, where Eleanor Davis, Michael Deforge, Patrick Kyle, Simon […]

World Comics: Lagos Comicon Turns Three

Attendees at the 2013 Lagos Comic Con

The comics scene in Nigeria has been thriving since the 1980s, but has yet to burst into the mainstream. There are tastes of what may soon emerge as youth in Nigeria fully embrace the internet—check out this sci-fi short on YouTube here, which includes an animated spaceship—but comics are still an emerging industry. On Friday, the third annual Lagos Comic Con will launch in the commercial capital of 20 million people. I corresponded with comics creator and co-founder Ayodele Elegba about the event, where we wrote about attractions, popular comics, Ebola, and cosplay.

Tonight to do: Julia Wertz and MariNaomi reading at Bergen Street

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The week between SPX and the Brooklyn Book Festival s usually crowded with events and this is no exception. Tonight, things kick off at Bergen Stree Comics with A Live Reading with Julia Wertz and MariNaomi!:

How to Survive Micro-Press Publishing at SPX

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by Zachary Clemente This past weekend, the 20th annual Small Press Expo (SPX) brought an explosion of independent and small press comics to the Marriott hotel in Bethesda, MD. Literally overflowing with an abundance of talent, the weekend was filled with amazing creators, signings, panels, even a wedding and a prom. One of the panels, Micro-Press […]

SPX: Laser Eyes & Fire-Breath, Annie Koyama on Koyama Press

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  by Zachary Clemente On Sunday of the 20th annual Small Press Expo (SPX), The Beat grabbed a strange, backless hotel couch surrounded by vacated folding tables with Annie Koyama, the past, current, and future Publisher at Koyama Press, the renown Toronto-based small-press publisher dedicated to promoting and supporting a wide range of emerging and established artists. […]

Long Beach Comic Con Programming begins roll-out

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The convention season never stops, and West Coasters will be enjoying the sights and sounds of the Long Beach Comic Con on September 27-28th at the Long Beach Convention Center. Now in its sixth year, LBCC has found a spot for itself as a comics focused show on a seaside setting. You can check out the eclectic line-up of […]

SPX ’14 party poop: this is the year of the Prom and the Wedding

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This weekend the Small Press Expo takes place in North Bethesda, MD. The show is known for its collegial, summer camp vibe, but this year, it is going ALL OUT. There will never again be talk about the pig roast or the softball game or the karaoke or anything else, because this year there is […]

Hanselmann, Deforge and Kyle on tour

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Simon Hanselmann, Patrick Kyle and Michael DeForge are going on tour together, an event that will doubtless span a thousand autobio comics. DeForge is the best known of the group, acclaimed for Lose, Ant Comix and many more of his abstractly horrifying enquiries into social systems human and animal. Hanselmann’s Megahex presents a sit-com for […]

Salt Lake Comic Con releases more information on attendance

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Following yesterday’s post on Salt Lake Comic Con’s attendance this weekend—widely reported as somewhere between 120,000-130,000—in which I examined some doubts about this number that have been expressed to me, I received a press release on the numbers, and some clarification from Bryan Brandenberg, Chief Marketing Officer and co-founder of the show. He told me, “We feel real good about our numbers. The capacity for the Salt Palace is 150,000 not 82,000. We not only were in the Convention Center, but our film festival was at the Gateway two blocks away and our gaming tournaments were offsite as well. Besides ticket sales, we gave away over 15,000 tickets to schools, military, first responders and charities and we counted free kids.”

Brooklyn Book Festival has huge lineup of comics events

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Just as soon as you recover from SPX, you’ll be drinking in the comcis events at the Brooklyn Book Festival, the annual literary love-in which will be held Sunday, September 21st this year. Not only is there a full slate of comics panels, with Brandon Graham, John Porcellino, MariNaomi, Mike Dawson and MANY MORE, but there will be a signings, a screening and parties galore. You can check out the totally excellent (I will steal their theme) Tumblr jsut for BBF comics and graphic novels, but here is the whole schedule for posterity:

Salt Lake City Comic Con draws 100,000 to a facility that holds 82,000

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The third Salt Lake City Con was held this weekend, and it was by all measures a success, becoming the largest convention in Utah, with a reported 120,000-130,000 people attending. This is up from the 72,000 that attended the first one a year ago and the 100,000 that attended the spring FanX sister event. Stan […]