Stripped is the title for the impressive selection of comics and graphic novel events that are scheduled during the 2013 Edinburgh International Book Festival in August.
As the largest literary festival in the world, Edinburgh BookFest has in the past featured comics and graphic novel creators amongst its events, from Watchmen’s Alan Moore to Doonesbury’s Garry Trudeau. However this year, with funding from the Scottish Government’s Edinburgh Festivals Expo Fund, there are considerably more than usual and they are mainly scheduled over a single weekend, 23-26 August, effectively making Stripped a destination comics event rather than a selection of individual events spread out within a larger programme. The main Stripped weekend also includes a selection of free comics related events, including a comic marketplace featuring local Scottish small press creators, a comics art exhibition, and the Jura Unbound late night events in the BookFest’s Spiegeletent.
As well as featuring in the main BookFest A4 size brochure, Stripped has its own US comic sized printed programme (as seen above) which is available by post or by download from the Stripped blog.
Before the main weekend American writer/artists Chris Ware and Joe Sacco will be discussing their work at three events on the evenings of 12-14 August plus physicist James Kaklios will be discussing The Physics Of Superheroes on 19 August.
The main Stripped sequence begins on the evening of Thursday 22 with Viz and children’s illustrator John Fardell discussing the influences Tintin, Dan Dare and Heath Robinson have on his work while French creator Barroux and US creator Cathy Brett discuss the theme of soldiers in their books. The main run of events then takes place over the weekend of Friday 23 to Monday 26 August, with creator talks, art workshops and reading workshops available. The highlights of the weekend talks for many people will no doubt be Grant Morrison on the Friday, Posy Simmonds on the Saturday, and Neil Gaiman on the Sunday.
While some large British comics conventions dwell heavily on America’s obsession with superheroes, the breadth of themes covered by the creators talks at Stripped is much more diverse ranging from children’s humour with the Etherington Brothers and children’s book illustration with Sarah McIntytre, through all ages adventure with Garen Ewing, to psychological horror with Hannah Berry and erotica with Melinda Gebbie. As well as the many UK and UK based artists and writers there will be talks from creators from America, France, Italy and Israel.
The art workshops cover a wide range of styles from zombies with Warren Pleece, children’s humour with Adam Murphy and Gary Northfield, long form books with Jon McNaught, superheroes with Sonia Martinez, and manga with Emma Vieceli. In addition there will be reading workshops led by Paul Gravett and Stuart Kelly.
After only a few days of tickets being on sale, Neil Gaiman’s Sandman discussion with Hannah Berry, not unexpectedly, is already sold out as are Emma Vieceli’s manga art workshop and Adam Murphy’s Phoenix comic workshop.
There are more details of all the Stripped events as well as reviews and other features on the Stripped blog.
The full list of Stripped events with links to their current ticket availability are on the BookFest website.
downthetubes Top Tip: Each Stripped event lasts one hour (unless otherwise stated in the programme) and there is a 30 minute gap before the next talk in the same tent to allow the audience to exit and the tent to be reset. Doors are normally opened 10-15 minutes before the talk takes place and close at the beginning of the talk with a strict policy of no latecomers admitted. It is therefore not possible to attend two events which begin one hour apart in different tents as the doors of the second tent will be closed before the audience exits the first tent. Be aware of this when booking tickets.
News, reviews, interviews and features for print and on-line: Spaceship Away (since October 2005), Bear Alley (since February 2007), downthetubes (since June 2007), and Eagle Times (since October 2008). Plus DC Thomson’s The Art Of Ian Kennedy, Titan’s Dan Dare and Johnny Red reprints, Ilex’s War Comics: A Graphic History and 500 Essential Graphic Novels, and Print Media’s The Iron Moon and Strip magazine.