Illustration by Chinese artist, Gan Mu Deep in the Woods, by Yucco Yu
South Africa is fertile ground for independant creatives making self-published comics due to the nature of our
publishing industry. And like other countries are marked by rich, visual outpourings of creativity by those artists
inhabiting the spaces between, documenting and creating at the various intersections of self, society and art.
For a quick peak or a first exposure to Chinese fringe comic art, read this article by Orion Martin -
Archiving the Fringe: Chinese Indie Comics Collective Special Comix. It's a broad and insightful overview of a
collection of chinese artists that see independant comics creation as one aspect of their creative output. These
are the comics that do not fall into the mainstream category of manga styled stories about friendship, love,
mecha and warlords. Compiled in the Comics Anthology of Special Comix and self-published, these works
comprise the variety of visual attitudes as applied to comics production from mainland China. Special Comix
is great place to start if you want to delve into the independant visual culture of all things China.
Last Updated on Thursday, 27 October 2016 13:52
The Initiation, cover by Su Opperman
Mogorosi Motshumi, one of South Africa's longest lasting and most tenacious cartoonists has released his first installment of his long awaited autobiographic, 360 Degrees. The CCIBA as collaborative partner in association with XLibris Publishers, AMAK and Atang Tshikare are proud to have made this endeavour a reality. 360 Degrees as a publication is one of the most invaluable graphic literature publications to date, as it is the first long form narrative in the comic art medium authored and drawn by a black South African. In just under ten years Motshumi has drawn more than 300 A1 size pages depicting his life story, all in the most impoverished conditions with the most basic artist tools, namely pen, paper and pencil and an infinite degree of patience. Using imagination and memory, Motshumi has stripped his life down to the most essential of experiences. Constructing through recollection a narrative based on those instances indispensable to his identity formation and socio-contextual understanding. In this regard, Motshumi's work is a true depiction of subjective veracity, even though it is a narrative construct in the sense that some aspects of his life is intentionally omitted or just in tems of the general fallibility of memory, 360 Degrees is the authentic portrayal of a life authentically lived.
In this regard, Motshumi's book illustrates how comic art can bridge the gap between the various understandings of the South African context as experienced by different racial groups, since our notion of subjective reality becomes more polarised as economic inequalities continue to grow. Through reading his book, you are transported into his shoes, experiencing a life that practically embodies the post-appartheid reality as experienced by most South Africans in this country. That on the other side of the Rainbow lies a dark territory, and though freedom of oppression was achieved politically, the notion of individual liberation and understanding remains an ongoing personal struggle. This is a must read.
Motshumi, The Initiation book launch at Bibliophilia.
Atang Tshikare showing off his Dad's book at the Open Book Literary Festival 2016
Last Updated on Wednesday, 19 October 2016 19:57
Open Book Comics Fest 2016 Market place.
This year's Open Book Comics Fest was a surrounding success, featuring a broad range of international comics and illustratorial artists, as well as phenomenal local talent. CCIBA is proud to again have had the opportunity to contribute to the sponsorship of Open Book Comics Fest, an event that forms part of the annual Open Book Literary Festival as hosted by the Booklounge and District 6 Museum. Comics Fest consists of workshops, talks and marketplace where artists can showcase and sell their various creative paraphenalia. The event is important in building a dialogue arround the illustratorial arts in South Africa, it's a means for artists to directly connect to the public and to collaborate and network within the artist's community itself. In placing Comics Fest within the Open Literary Festival, comics are consequently viewed as a literary artform within the South African context. Thereby providing legitimacy and seriousness to an artform that's generally viewed as a children's genre within South African imagination. This year, the Stellenbosch Honours Illustration students also had a chance to showcase what they're up to and the amazing talent that's coming out of the next generation of creatives does not disappoint!
Find more info on Comics Fest here.
Stellenbosch Students presenting and selling their work at Open Book Comics Fest 2016.
Last Updated on Wednesday, 05 October 2016 12:26
Young Hustla #1
Young Hustla is a collaborative comics enterprise with an aim to develop entreprenuership in South Africa, a country that suffers from more than a 35% unemployement rate amongst the youth. It highlights the challenges that the youth face today and what it will take to rise above the impoverished circumstances that most young people find themselves in. Young Hustla voices the opinion that just having a dream to aspire to is not enough, you need to work hard at it and there's no easy road, or a quick means to achieve your goal. What Young Hustla as an initiative would like to achieve is to make entrepreneurship education accessible, affordable and attractive (to use their words), in order for young South Africans to contribute to and build a strong economy in the Africa of tomorrow, thereby uplifting themselves. With the release of their digital comic, Young Hustla aims to spread the ideals of entrepeneurship and for the youth to realise that their creativity can be a commodity. See the Young Hustla digital comic here.
Young Hustla #1 - Page 5 (Digital Comic)
Last Updated on Monday, 03 October 2016 11:43
Spacegirl- Travis Charest.
Spacegirl, a web comic created by Travis Charest is the epitomy of skill and what great drawing and an understanding of form can achieve in bringing the extraordinary to life. Consisting of two volumes so far, Charest style is reminiscent of some 1930's sci-fi art as found in the pulp magazines in his use of detailed ink sketches combined with darks for dramatic effect. The simplicity of one frame (or panel) constituting one page as experienced through the landscape format of most digital devices makes for an easy read when it comes to a webcomic and truly brings the detail of his technique to the fore. For the full experience of his artistic ability, see SPACEGIRL.
Spacegirl Panel 12 - Travis Charest
Spacegirl Panel 28 - Travis Charest
Last Updated on Monday, 03 October 2016 11:41