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A COMICA REVIEW BY:

LIBAN DIRIYE


Liban Diriye reports for the comic news web-site Bleeding Cool on the Black Powers panel, held on 6 November 2009 at the Swiss Cottage Library.

Last night I had the pleasure of getting lost in the Swiss Cottage Library complex trying to find the right room for the Black Powers panel. My bewilderment was shortlived when I soon found a room full of artwork on walls and comics on plinths. The purpose of the exhibition was to showcase black representation in comics.

The panel itself was chaired by the co-curators of the exhibition, Paul Peart-Smith and George Nelson. Also on the panel were artists Woodrow Phoenix, Patrice Aggs and John Aggs (mother and son, quite the artistic family).

As well as talking about the art displayed, some by the panelists, the panel took questions from the audience. The ensuing discussion ranged from Herge’s “naive” (the word used by John Aggs as some in the audience chuckled) portrayal of black people in “Tintin in the Congo” to interesting tangents comparing black representation in cinema to comics.

When the event was over the audience was left wanting more. Well, the work displayed delivered it, included original artwork from Ho Che Anderson’s “King” and Munoz & Sampayo’s “Billie Holiday”. For those alone it’s worth popping down to Swiss Cottage and getting lost for a while.

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Reviews

"Featuring some of the most critically-acclaimed international comic book creators..."
Tripwire

"Comiket... was packed to bursting with enthusiastic, earnest artists hustling their work."
Mike Leader

"It is turning into one of the best comic-related events of the year in London."
Joel Meadows

"Guibert turned out to be a captivating speaker."
Sarah McIntyre

"British preconceptions of graphic novels are changing as exhibitions such as Comica expose the challenging work out there."
Design Week

"Comica Comiket at the ICA was buzzing with invention and ideas."
The Guardian

"This event showcased some of the great variety of manga art styles and artists working across languages, continents and cultures in the world today."
Karl Pell

"...a long-overdue celebration of graphic art and literature."
BBC Collective

"I went in a casual fan, and came out an undisputed Kirbyphile."
Comic Book Resources

"I had a wonderful time and really enjoyed the presentation. It was so impressive!"
Helen McCarthy