Swiss cartoonist Nadia Raviscioni’s Vent Frais, vent du matin (âFresh Breeze, Morning Breezeâ), may be the first book fully to meet the challenge set by the previous generation of comics autobiographers in terms of ambition, complexity and artistic conviction. Released earlier this year, the book has been more than a decade in the making. It reclaims for Raviscioniâwhose precocious juvenilia was released across a handful of publications in the late 90s by Genevan publisher Atrabileâa place at the center of the new generation of alternative cartoonists.
1h25 by 27-year old French cartoonist Judith Forest, published last fall, is an ambitious autobiographical essay. Organized like a drawn diary, it details a few months in the recent life of its creator, from her graduation from the Beaux-arts in Paris through her move to Brussels, an hour and twenty-five minutes away on the trainâhence the titleâin search of her future. Though clearly, and self-avowedly, influenced by the work of seminal autobio cartoonist Fabrice Neaud, Forest eschews his broader, more political perspectives to concentrate on her relationships with others. She is frank about her sexual encountersâcasual and romanticâand inquisitive in her attempts to understand and loyally represent her friends and acquaintances.
Released last year, David Prudhommeâs critically acclaimed, award-winning RÃ©bÃ©tiko (la mauvaise herbe) is a celebration of the early 20th-century Greek tradition of urban music later united under that umbrella term. The story takes place over the course of a day in Athens, October 1936, a few months into the military regime of Ioannis Metaxas. It follows the actions of four musicians, all of whom are based on actual legends of Rebetiko.
The Oslo Comics Expo saw its fourth annual iteration this past weekend. The formula established at the inaugural festival in 2007 remains pretty much in place â a day-and-a-half of programming, concentrating mostly on Norwegian creators, a small-but-interesting-and-somewhat-eclectic roster of international guests (Jim Woodring and Becky Cloonan headlined this year) â a pleasant, laid-back atmosphere, and a big party to round everything off.
This past weekend saw the fourth edition of the international comics biennial, Komiks.dk, in Copenhagen, Denmark. The most ambitious and successful yet, it was held at a large venue at the center of town, whereas previous iterations were on the city’s periphery, and it boasted an impressive international guest list headed by the American triumvirate of Charles Burns, Daniel Clowes and Chris Ware, and the British one of Dave Gibbons, Kevin O’Neill and Frank Quitely.
This year’s Fumetto festival in the Swiss town of Lucerne is well under way, after a weekend of healthy programming. Precipitation might have kept some of the crowds away, but especially Sunday saw busy exhibition venues.
Right. Sunday at the AngoulÃªme festival is always a bit of a wash when one lives abroad and hasn’t booked another night in France, but now it’s Monday and here are some thoughts on the festival as a whole.
The cartooning duo Florent Ruppert and JÃ©rÃ´me Mulot are amongst the most remarkable emerging talents on the Francophone comics scene. A two-headed cartoon beast, theirs is an organic collaboration, melding writing and drawing. Their comics are possessed of a strong …
Reporting live from the AngoulÃªme festival: Saturday is here and its been a busy day. Crowded as usual, negotiating the often tight exhibition spaces and lecture theaters can be trying, but is certainly worth it. We started the day at the new comics center, which I must say is amazing. Under new directorship and with a spacious new scenically situated in a row of refurbished and expanded row of factory buildings across the river, this is a major upgrade that the long ailing institution sorely needed.