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Small Press Expo Announces its 2021 Virtual Programming Slate

Small Press Expo

In addition to the previously announced live-streamed Ignatz Award ceremony, the Small Press Expo is pleased to announce that there will be a full slate of programming on Saturday, September 18th, and Sunday, September 19th, 2021.

Beginning at 11:00 AM EST each day, the panels will stream on the SPX YouTube channel. The programming includes a documentary about the diverse creator voices at SPX and workshops from Liz Reed and Tom Hart. There will be panels on Queer Joy, innovation in the use of color, starting your own local comics scene, and many more. The Spotlight panel will be on Bill Campbell and Bizhan Khodabandeh’s book The Day The Klan Came To Town, moderated by ICAF’s Dr. Qiana Whitted.

Check the SPX 2021 Program Schedule for an up-to-date list of everything that has been announced so far, and
Following the program schedule at 8:00 PM on Saturday, September 18 will be the livestream broadcast of the 2021 Ignatz Awards ceremony, also on the SPX Youtube Channel.

All the action begins on Saturday September 18th.

SPX 2021 Programming

(All times are Eastern Time)

SATURDAY SEPTEMBER 18

Enemies of the State
11AM-12:00PM
Join moderator Alex Hoffman and fellow critics Rob Clough, Daniel Elkin, and Jules Bakes for a special SPX edition of the podcast Enemy Of The State. The panel’s special guest is artist E.A. Bethea, whose Francis Bacon was nominated for a 2021 Ignatz Award. They will ask her in-depth questions regarding the comic and its remarkably dense qualities.

Personal Comics from Color, Shape, Line … and Lyrics!
12:15-1:15PM
You can make comics only with an open heart and whatever materials you have lying around. In one of the favorite workshops at SAW, Tom Hart will guide you through making 8-page mini-comics that uses song lyrics, personal memories and simple drawing and painting to make a personal comic that says what you feel and has a magic all its own. Suitable for all ages.

Comics, Bodies, and Embodiment
1:30PM-2:30PM
Bodies take many forms, and our relationship with one’s own can shift throughout our lives. Comics are a powerful tool for understanding and accepting the bodies in which we live. Joel Christian Gill, Tatiana Gill, Ashley Robin Franklin, and Robin Smith discuss their work as a means of exploring the corporeal form in a discussion led by Alison WIlgus.

Queer Joy and Queer Friendships
3:00PM-4:00PM
Join moderator Carta Monir and guests Emma Jayne, Crystal Frasier, and Walter Scott in a celebration of queer joy in comics. This discussion focuses on the power of queer friendships and happiness as both driving force and radiant rebellion.

Ourselves, In Stories: A Documentary Of The Small Press Expo
4:15PM-5:15PM
Award-winning documentarian Marjee Chmiel screens her documentary on SPX. Titled Ourselves, In Stories, it takes a look at the challenges, obstacles, and rewards of crafting new stories and redefining our cultural vision for whose stories are heard. Moderator Warren Bernard joins Marjee after the screen to ask her about the inspiration for and making of the film.

The Local Scene: Shows, Publishing, and Getting Started
5:30PM-6:30PM
While not every city has congregations of cartoonists like Chicago or Portland, every city has its own particular advantages and special qualities that can create its own unique scene. Join moderator Robin Enrico along with publishers and scene-makers Juan Fernandez, Jamila Rowser, Avi Ehrlich, and Neil Brideau as they discuss ideas regarding pedagogy, connecting with local schools and institutions, and incorporating other media and art scenes in creating your own.

Playing With The Medium
6:45PM-7:45PM
The familiar grids and linear storytelling of comics have stood the test of time. However, there are always innovators looking to stretch the formal limits of comics. Be it creating metafictional narratives, creating constraints on a page, or integrating comics with other media, there’s a rich tradition of playing with the medium of comics. Formal comics expert Dr. Craig Fischer will engage with experimental cartoonists Matt Madden, Shing Yin Khor, Nguyen K. Nguyen, and Joe Kessler on their formal experiments.

SUNDAY SEPTEMBER 19

Comics and Meditative Intention
11AM-12:00PM
What mindset is required for cartoonists to work? Is drawing a form of work or play? How does this relate to Lynda Barry’s conception of play as a serious, meditative activity? How do artists escape thinking about whether or not their work is good while they are doing it? Moderator Rob Clough discusses these and other questions with Hartley Lin, Keiler Roberts, Jason Shiga, and Luke Kruger-Howard.

Mixed Media Storytelling
12:15PM-1:15PM
Liz Reed of Cuddles and Rage walks you through how to sculpt Zombie Strawberries from C&R’s graphic novel Bites of Terror. This online workshop is designed to use clay and household materials to create your very own mixed media comic at home. The materials needed include: white, green, and red clay (polymer or air dry), foil, toothpicks, q-tips, a paintbrush, a gray marker or paint, cotton balls, glue, and a cutting tool. We’d love to see your zombie strawberries in action! When posting to social tag @spxcomics and @cuddlesandrage. Bites of Terror is a mixed media horror anthology by Cuddles and Rage from Quirk Books. You can find Bites of Terror online wherever books are sold or buy the book directly from Cuddles and Rage on Etsy.

World-Building And New Futures
1:30PM-2:30PM
What does the world become when any future is imaginable? From the smallest details to -all-expansive histories, alternate worlds provide a glimpse of what is possible. Alice Santos joins Kevin Czap, Maki Naro, Casey Nowak, and Alissa Salah in an exploration of the process of constructing these new futures.

Focus On The Day The Klan Came To Town
3:00PM-4:00PM
This is a special spotlight on The Day The Klan Came To Town, a powerful work of historical fiction. It’s based on the real events in 1923 when the KKK came to a small Pennsylvania town to make an example of its largely Jewish and Catholic populations, and how a group of people made a stand. Join moderator Dr. Qiana Whitted and creators Bill Campbell and Bizhan Khodabandeh as they explore the event and their adaptation.

Color and Narrative Innovation
3PM-4:00PM
Color is often secondary to line in comics, but a number of cartoonists have experimented with bringing color front and center. Not only that, but their innovations have included making color central to the emotional narratives of their stories. Moderator Rob Clough talks to Dash Shaw, Shira Spector, MariNaomi, and Tillie Walden about their challenges and experiences using color in bold, new ways.

Buer’s Kiss
5:30PM-6:30PM
Büer’s Kiss is a genre-bending live comics performance combining projected images, voice actors, and foley effects for an unforgettable adaptation of cartoonist Carl Antonowicz’s graphic novel of the same name. This recording was made during the show’s debut in 2018 at Pittsburgh’s New Hazlett Theater.

Small Press Expo Announces Dash Shaw, Bill Campbell, Bizhan Khodabendeh and Joe Kessler as Special Guests for SPX 2021

Small Press Expo has announced the final group of Special Guests for SPX 2021. The virtual festival takes place on Saturday September 18 with live and pre-recorded programming about the amazing world of independent and small press comics, as well as a livestream of the annual Ignatz Awards.

SPX 2021 is honored to have the following creators as Special Guests to this year’s show:

Dash Shaw

Dash Shaw

Dash Shaw’s latest, Discipline from the New York Review Books, takes place during the Civil War, when many Quakers were caught between their fervent support of abolition, a desire to preserve the Union, and their long-standing commitment to pacifism. When Charles Cox, a young Quaker from Indiana, slips out early one morning to enlist in the Union Army, he scandalizes his family and his community.

Discipline is told largely through the letters exchanged between the Cox siblings—incorporating material from an actual Quaker and soldier journals of the era—and drawn in a style that combines modern graphic storytelling with the Civil War–era battlefield illustrations of the likes of Thomas Nast and Winslow Homer. The result is a powerful consideration of faith, justice, and violence, and an American comics masterpiece.

Photo courtesy Joanna Morrissey


Bill Campbell

Bill Campbell

Bill Campbell’s author of The Day The Klan Came To Town from PM Press, which is a fictionalized, graphic retelling of a KKK riot that occurred in Bill’s hometown of Carnegie, PA in 1923, at the height of the power of the KKK in America, and the community resistance to it as seen through the eyes of Primo Salerno, a Sicilian immigrant.


Bizhan Khodabandeh

Bizhan Khodabandeh

Bizhan Khodabendeh is the illustrator of The Day the Klan Came to Town, a fictionalized, graphic retelling of a KKK riot that occurred in Carnegie, PA in 1923 and the resistance to it.


Joe Kessler

Joe Kessler

Joe Kessler’s Windowpane from London-based Breakdown Press, is a one-man-anthology of critically acclaimed narrative and experimental comics by London based artist, Joe Kessler. The book contains new work, along with reprints of Windowpane 3 and Windowpane 4.

Small Press Expo Announces Joel Christian Gill, Ashley Robin Franklin, Walter Scott and Matt Madden as Special Guests for SPX 2021

Small Press Expo has announced the second group of Special Guests for SPX 2021. The virtual festival takes place on Saturday September 18 with live and pre-recorded programming about the amazing world of independent and small press comics, as well as a livestream of the annual Ignatz Awards. Additional Special Guests will be announced over the next few weeks.

Joel Christian Gill

SPX 2021 has revealed the following creators as Special Guests to this year’s show:

Joel Christian Gill

For the third book in the bestselling Tales of the Talented Tenth series, Joel Christian Gill brings Robert Smalls to life by telling the true story of the enslaved African who pulled off one of the most daring and largest heists of the Civil War. Come along for the adventure as Robert earns a job working for the C.S.S. Planter, escapes to freedom, goes on to become a first-generation Black politician, and makes history by writing and leading the passage of legislation that led to the United States’ first free and compulsory public school system. Tales of the Talented Tenth is a historical comic series that focuses on the adventures of amazing African Americans in action.


Ashley Robin Franklin

Ashley Robin Franklin

Fusing sexual intimacy with cosmic dread, Ashley Robin Franklin’s latest work, a queer horror tale One Millions Tiny Fires from Silver Sprocket follows Briana and Cassie, a couple in an isolated Texas farmhouse, whose rural fantasy has soured into a tense nightmare.

After discovering an unknown object that had crash landed from the sky, Briana begins to suspect that something uncanny is happening to her partner.


Walter Scott

Walter Scott

Wendy is an aspiring contemporary artist whose adventures have taken her to galleries, art openings, and parties in Los Angeles, Tokyo, and Toronto. In Wendy, Master of Art from Drawn & Quarterly, Walter Scott’s sly wit and social commentary zero in on MFA culture as our hero decides to hunker down and complete a master of fine arts at the University of Hell in small-town Ontario.

At its heart, this is a book about the give and take of community—about someone learning how to navigate empathy and boundaries, and to respect herself. It is deeply funny and endlessly relatable as it shows Wendy growing up from Millennial art party girl to successful artist, friend, teacher—and Master of Art.


Matt Madden

Matt Madden

Matt Madden’s most recent book, Ex Libris from Uncivilized Books, revolves around a character trapped in a room with nothing but a futon and a bookcase full of comics. As they peruse covers, read stories and fragments of stories, they begin to suspect that the comics contain hidden messages and… a threat. Fiction and reality blur; sanity and madness become increasingly intertwined as the reader becomes convinced the key to their predicament hides between the panels of the strange books.

With a dizzying array of inventive visual and narrative styles, Ex Libris continues the line of exploration and play that Madden initiated with 99 Ways to Tell a Story: Exercises in Style. Ex Libris is a tribute to the meta-fictional tradition of writers like Jorge Luis Borges, Julio Cortázar, Vladimir Nabokov, and Italo Calvino.

Small Press Expo Announces Tillie Walden, Shira Spector, Hartley Lin, Simon Hanselmann and Keiler Roberts as Special Guests for SPX 2021

Small Press Expo has announced the first group of Special Guests for SPX 2021. The virtual festival takes place on Saturday September 18 with live and pre-recorded programming about the amazing world of independent and small press comics, as well as a livestream of the annual Ignatz Awards.

Additional Special Guests will be announced over the next few weeks. SPX 2021 has announced the following creators as Special Guests to this year’s show:

Tillie Walden

Tillie Walden

Alone In Space compiles award-winning cartoonist Tillie Walden’s short comics into a comprehensive collection of the early work which shot her to fame on both sides of the Atlantic.

We start with Tillie’s first published comic The End of Summer, as well as I Love This Part, Tillie’s bittersweet breakout story of small-town teen romance, and A City Inside, a study of growth and adulthood through a surreal and poetic recounting of one woman’s life.

Finally we share never-before collected early sketches, webcomics, and short stories from magazines, such as What It’s Like To Be Gay In An All-Girls Middle School.

If Tillie Walden is the future of comics, then the future starts here.


Shira Spector

Shira Spector

Shira Spector literally paints a vivid portrait of the most eventful 10 years of her life, encompassing her tenacious struggle to get pregnant, the emotional turmoil of her father’s cancer diagnosis and eventual death, and her recollections of past relationships with her parents and her partner.

Set in a kaleidoscope of Montreal and Toronto, Red Rock Baby Candy from Fantagraphics unfolds as one of the most formally inventive comics in the history of the medium.The drawing is visceral, symbolic, and naturalistic and is the most formally revolutionary visual storytelling since Emil Ferris’s My Favorite Thing is Monsters. Photo courtesy- Zoë Gemelli


Hartley Lin

Hartley Lin

After insomniac law clerk Frances Scarland is recruited by her firm’s most notorious senior partner, she seems poised for serious advancement—whether she wants it or not. But when her impulsive best friend Vickie decides to move to the opposite coast for an acting role, Frances’ confusing existence starts to implode. Young Frances from Adhouse Books is an intimate study of work chaos and close friendships over time.

“Hartley Lin builds out a young woman’s life in illuminating detail and agonizing nuance… the draftsmanship is sumptuous and the storytelling is top-notch, making for a narrative meal that leaves one satisfied and enriched.” —Vulture


Simon Hanselmann

Simon Hanselmann

In March 2020, as the planet began to enter lockdown, acclaimed cartoonist Simon Hanselmann decided that what the world needed most was free, easily accessible entertainment, so he set out to make the greatest webcomic ever created! The result is also certain to be one of the most acclaimed and eagerly anticipated graphic novels of 2021, Crisis Zone from Fantagraphics.

As the Covid-19 pandemic continued to escalate far beyond any reasonable expectations, Crisis Zone escalated right alongside, in real time, with daily posts on Instagram. Over the course of 2020, Crisis Zone has amassed unprecedented amounts of new fans to the Megg and Mogg universe and is presented here, unabridged and uncensored, with a slew of added pages and scenes deleted from the webcomic, as well as an extensive “Director’s Commentary” from Hanselmann himself.


Keiler Roberts

Keiler Roberts

My Begging Chart is Keiler Roberts’s breakout graphic novel from Drawn & Quarterly is heralded by The Chicago Reader, Chicago Tribune, Publishers Weekly, and more. In it, Roberts mines the passing moments of family life to deliver an affecting and funny account of what it means to simultaneously exist as a mother, daughter, wife, and artist.

Drawn in an unassuming yet charming staccato that mimics the awkward rhythm of life, no one’s foibles are left unspared, most often the author’s own.

Small Press Expo 2021 Goes Virtual

Small Press Expo

Things are generally still up in the air concerning conventions being held in 2021. Small Press Expo has announced that they have decided to go virtual for this year. Due to the health and safety of guests and the community, the convention decided this was the best course.

SPX 2021 will feature a full slate of programming along with a livestream of the Ignatz Awards ceremony. They will also be announcing special guests who will take part in the virtual panels and workshops so stay tuned this summer for all the details.

They have also announced they have come to an agreement with Marriot concerning this years and future convnetions. The convention will incur higher costs for their 2022 and 2023 conventions instead of having to deal with the cancellation policy.

With that, funding for charitable initiatives are paused until 2024 at the earlest. That includes the Graphic Novel Gift Program and support of the National Book Festival. But, this means the beloved convention will be able to continue for years to come.

Small Press Expo provides an Update as the Convention is Up in the Air

Small Press Expo Logo

Conventions have been sending out updates as to their statuses with COVID still lingering. Small Press Expo released an update that things are still in flux.

The convention is in a jam. If it cancels by itself, it will be devastated and be wiped out permanently. If the local health department steps in, then that’s a different story.

The convention give a pretty deep dive into where things stand and the answer is… not much has changed.

The convention is still working with Montgomery Country government as to whether or not a show of its size and scale can be held in September. They are also working with the Marriott in case of a cancelation. If there is no physical event, SPX plans to hold a virtual one with chances of expanding it. That could include programming and the Ignatz Awards.

With the pandemic ongoing, the Ignatz Awards submissions will be done digitally again this year. The submission process will be released soon and the publication eligibility covering June 1, 2020 through May 30, 2021.The submission deadline is June 1, 2021.

The Small Press Expo also has initiatives including their Graphic Novel Gift Program, the Library of Congress National Book Festival, and the SPX Collection at the Library of Congress. About 5% of the shows revenue goes towards these.

The future of these programs are uncertain and the Graphic Novel Gift Program and the National Book Festival sponsorships will be funded at 2024 at the earliest. There’s also been a disruption as far as the work with the Library of Congress for the preservation of material which is being worked on.

You can read the Small Press Expo’s full update below.

Earlier this year, we reached out to SPX’s creative community and attendees to provide a status update on the fate of SPX 2021. In a nutshell, should we elect to proactively cancel our show (versus the event being cancelled by an external body, like the local health department), SPX would incur a devastating cancellation fee that would, essentially, wipe us out permanently.

We want nothing more than to see all your beautiful faces, your amazing artwork, and everything else that comes with creating our annual festival together, with you. We also want to make sure the return of SPX is both safe and economically viable: for your travel, for your stay, and for the exhibition itself.

We promised an update on our status around the end of March. So, along with some specifics about where we stand with regard to SPX 2021, we’re including in this note a deeper look into where SPX is as an organization and what you can expect in the coming year. Needless to say, the pandemic has touched and changed us all.

As there are some long-term impacts to the show, we want to let everyone know what those are and what they mean for the community.

STATUS OF SPX 2021
At this point, not much has changed with our situation regarding SPX 2021. We are actively engaged with various entities within the Montgomery County government about whether or not a show of the size and scale of SPX could (or should) be held in September.

We are also negotiating directly with the Marriott regarding the potential cancellation fee as well as the terms of future contract years. We will give everyone a status update by the end of this month at the latest, while we push for a final resolution, one way or the other.

In the absence of an in-person festival, we anticipate continuing, and perhaps expanding, aspects of the virtual events held by SPX in 2020, including programming and, of course, the annual Ignatz Awards presentation.

2021 IGNATZ AWARDS

Given the ongoing impacts of the pandemic, we have made the decision to once again have the Ignatz Awards submissions submitted digitally (we do ask that you retain one copy of all works for potential submission to the Library of Congress).

We will be sending out the submission process details within a few days. The publication window of eligibility for the 2021 Ignatz Awards is June 1, 2020 through May 30, 2021, with a submission deadline of June 1, 2021.

SPX INITIATIVES

SPX is a volunteer, non-profit organization. Everything we do goes toward a range of initiatives devoted to promoting the visibility and success of creators in the independent comics community. About 95% of festival revenues and sponsorships goes towards operating the show, with the remaining going towards these programs:

The Graphic Novel Gift Program – Since its inception in 2011, our Graphic Novel Gift Program has provided over 2,500 copies of works by members of the SPX community to libraries serving under-privileged patrons. Besides supplementing their constrained budgets, these gifts expose both library collection managers and patrons to titles that better reflect the diverse make-up of their communities.

The Library of Congress National Book Festival – As the sponsor of graphic novel programming at the Library of Congress National Book Festival, SPX provides financial support to indie comics creators to support their appearance as special guests of the festival, the largest such show in the United States. This allows a few SPX creators to share “The Big Stage” every year with the most esteemed authors in the country, and have their works promoted to the over 200,000 people who attend the NBF every year.

The SPX Collection at the Library of Congress – The Small Press Expo Collection at the Library of Congress was established in 2011 with the express purpose of preserving the works of SPX creators for future generations. In the 9 years of its existence, over 10,000 mini-comics, graphic novels, posters, prints, original art, and ephemera have been preserved as part of the cultural, artistic, and social history of the United States at the preeminent Library of Congress.

With the impact of the pandemic on future SPX events and its revenues still uncertain, neither the Graphic Novel Gift Program nor the NBF sponsorships (nor any other non-festival related initiatives) will be funded until 2024 at the earliest.

We will need at least 2 years of attendance to ascertain whether we have the cash flow to either re-start these programs, or create new programs to support the SPX creator community. When we are in a position to do so, you’ll be the first to know.

The same goes for the small stipend SPX provides for our Executive Director. This stipend was suspended in June 2020, and will not be reinstated until 2024 at the earliest, if approved by a vote of the Executive Committee.

The pandemic has also impeded our ability to capture the history and legacy of SPX creators for preservation and study in the decades to come as a part of our Library of Congress collection. It has been a truly momentous period in so many ways and your work has often been an essential commentary to these events. We are committed to working with you, as well as with the Library of Congress, to ensure the preservation of material from this “lost” time.

CBLDF RELATIONSHIP

When SPX was created in 1994, one of its primary non-profit purposes was to be a fundraiser for the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund. When our corporate charter was rewritten in 2011, this explicit language was removed in support of a broader mandate that has allowed us more flexibility to expand into other initiatives, with our Graphic Novel Gift Program and Library of Congress Collection being notable new programs that resulted.

SPX no longer has any relationship with the CBLDF, our last collaborative effort with that organization being the initial fundraising for the “Defend the 11” campaign, in 2018, which saw SPX divert 100% of its funds budgeted for the CBLDF to defray the legal defense costs of members of our creative community who faced a defamation lawsuit. Proceeds from all sales at the CBLDF’s table at that year’s show also went to the Defend the 11 fund.

SPX has not contributed any funds to the CBLDF since 2017 and going forward has no intention of supporting them in any way.

BEHIND THE SCENES

SPX is a labor of love for our team. We are volunteers, with about 20 of us contributing our time year-round as a part of the Executive Committee. As SPX has grown, so has the crew that supports it, resulting in an ever-more diverse, multi-generational range of perspectives about who we are today as an organization and how we should accomplish the mission set out in our charter. One thing that has not changed is that we are here to support you.

Along with the work we put into our year-round initiatives, when you are here with us at SPX, whether it be by providing coffee in the morning, hosting a reception in the evening, or being your advocate with the hotel when it comes to shipping, parking, etc., we strive to care for our creative community, the attendees, and the 100+ volunteers that support SPX, so that you can focus on what you’ve joined us to do, be it reconnecting with friends, moving merch, or singing your heart out at karaoke.

SPX aims to be a place where you can be your best self, to find acceptance and joy amongst the family you choose, while also finding the creative challenge and insight that forces you to grow as an artist, and the professional opportunities that help you build a successful career. We are always eager for your feedback on how well we hit this mark, year-after-year.

Thanks SO Much,The SPX Executive Committee

SPX 2021 Faces an Unknown Future Due to COVID

SPX

At this point, the planning process for this year’s Small Press Expo would be well underway. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, that planning has led to continued uncertainty over the event.

In an update to the community, the SPX team has let it be known that the “only certainty we have for SPX 2021 is uncertainty”.

The convention is in a difficult position as large-scale in person events are booked years in advance which means there were already contractual obligations for 2020 and 2021 before everything went to shit.

Due to those contracts, SPX can’t unliaterly and preemptively cancel their 2021 event. They would experience penalties they’d have to pay the hotel and it’d jeopardize the future of the show.

So, that puts the convention in the hands of the Montgomery County, MD government. If the county says events such as SPX still cannnot happen, it makes it easier for the show to back out of their contract. So, the convention needs to wait to see what decisions the county makes before making a final determination on the status of the 2021 event. Last year, that decision was made in June.

SPX has vowed to do the following:

  • Stay in contact with MontCo’s Department of Health and other agencies to monitor them so SPX can see how they are reacting, or not, to allowing events like SPX to happen.
  • SPX will hold off the exhibitor processes of the lottery and invites until at least April. Sometime in late March, they will update the community on whether they will start the Exhibitor processes or not.
  • Room block information for reserving hotel rooms will not go out until SPX decides whether to move forward with the Exhibitor processes.
  • SPX will work with publishers on a slate of Special Guests with the understanding that they might not attend an in-person event but would be invited to participate in virtual programming.

The next update will happen in late March when we all will have a better idea as far as how vaccination programs are going and what the infection rates are.

And the 2020 Ignatz Award Winners Are…

The 2020 winners for the annual Ignatz Awards have been announced during this year’s virtual Small Press Expo. The Ignatz are a celebration of outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning.

The Ignatz, named after George Herriman’s brick-wielding mouse from his long running comic strip Krazy Kat, recognizes exceptional work that challenges popular notions of what comics can achieve, both as an art form and as a means of personal expression. The Ignatz Awards are a festival prize, the first of such in the United States comic book industry. The 2020 Ignatz Awards are sponsored by Politics & Prose, a D.C. based independent bookstore devoted to cultivating community and strengthening the common good through books, programs, and a respectful exchange of ideas.

The winner for each category is in bold below. Congrats to all of the winners and nominees!

Outstanding Artist

  • Ana Galvañ – Press Enter to Continue
  • Rosemary Valero-O’Connell
  • Tianran Qu – Slices of Life 100 Comic Montage
  • Michael DeForge – Familiar Face
  • Katie Hicks – Guts

Outstanding Anthology

  • Dates III – edited by Zora Gilbert & Cat Parra
  • Be Gay, Do Comics – edited by The Nib
  • LAAB Magazine #4 – edited by Ronald Wimberly & Joshua O’Neill
  • The Anthology of Mind – Tommi Musturi
  • Sweaty Palms Volume 2 – Sage Coffey

Outstanding Collection

  • GLEEM – Eddy Carrasco
  • Glenn Ganges in: The River at Night – Kevin Huizenga
  • Inappropriate – Gabrielle Bell
  • Slices of Life: 100 Comic Montage – Tianran Qu
  • The Complete Works of Fante Bukowski – Noah Van Sciver

Outstanding Comic

  • Cosmoknights – Hannah Templer
  • My Dog Ivy – Gabrielle Bell
  • Cry Wolf Girl – Ariel Ries
  • Theth Tomorrow Forever – Josh Bayer
  • Mooncakes – Wendy Xu & Suzanne Walker

Outstanding Graphic Novel

  • Hot Comb – Ebony Flowers
  • Pittsburgh – Frank Santoro
  • Skip – Molly Mendoza
  • How I Tried to be a Good Person – Ulli Lust
  • This Was Our Pact – Ryan Andrews

Outstanding Minicomic

  • The Gulf – Nguyen Nguyen
  • Chapter Two – Keren Katz
  • Canvas – Theo K. Stultz
  • I Feel Weird #4 – Haleigh Buck
  • Black Hole Heart – Cathy G Johnson

Outstanding Online Comic

  • I Exist – Breena Nuñez
  • Like the Tide – Isabella Rotman
  • SUPERPOSE – Joe Seosamh & C. Anka
  • Gabby Schulz (@gabbyschulz)
  • Witchy – Ariel Ries

Outstanding Series

  • The Misplaced – Chris Callahan
  • Fizzle – Whit Taylor
  • SUPERPOSE – Joe Seosamh & C. Anka
  • kuš! – kuš! komiks
  • Frontier – Youth in Decline

Outstanding Story

  • The Lab – Allison Conway
  • The Hard Tomorrow – Eleanor Davis
  • The Weight #9 – Melissa Mendes
  • “Little Red Riding Hood” – Inappropriate – Gabrielle Bell
  • BTTM FDRS – Ezra Daniels & Ben Passmore

Promising New Talent

  • AJ Dungo
  • Sylvia Nickerson
  • Theo Stultz
  • Emil Wilson
  • Andrew Lorenzi

You can watch the ceremony below:

The Small Press Expo Announces the 2020 Ignatz Award Nominees

The Small Press Expo (SPX) has announced the 2020 nominees for the annual presentation of the Ignatz Awards, a celebration of outstanding achievement in comics and cartooning.

The Ignatz, named after George Herriman’s brick-wielding mouse from his long running comic strip Krazy Kat, recognizes exceptional work that challenges popular notions of what comics can achieve, both as an art form and as a means of personal expression. The Ignatz Awards are a festival prize, the first of such in the United States comic book industry. The 2020 Ignatz Awards are sponsored by Politics & Prose, a D.C. based independent bookstore devoted to cultivating community and strengthening the common good through books, programs, and a respectful exchange of ideas.

The nominees for the ballot were determined by a panel of the best of today’s comics professionals, Scott Cederlund, November Garcia, Malala Gharib, and Rosemary Valero-O’Connell. Voting beings August 31 and continues until September 9. Register to vote via the SPX website. Everyone registering to vote after the initial ballots are mailed on August 31 will be emailed ballots soon after registration.

Outstanding Artist

  • Ana Galvañ – Press Enter to Continue
  • Rosemary Valero-O’Connell
  • Tianran Qu – Slices of Life 100 Comic Montage
  • Michael DeForge – Familiar Face
  • Katie Hicks – Guts

Outstanding Anthology

  • Dates III – edited by Zora Gilbert & Cat Parra
  • Be Gay, Do Comics – edited by The Nib
  • LAAB Magazine #4 – edited by Ronald Wimberly & Joshua O’Neill
  • The Anthology of Mind – Tommi Musturi
  • Sweaty Palms Volume 2 – Sage Coffey

Outstanding Collection

  • GLEEM – Eddy Carrasco
  • Glenn Ganges in: The River at Night – Kevin Huizenga
  • Inappropriate – Gabrielle Bell
  • Slices of Life: 100 Comic Montage – Tianran Qu
  • The Complete Works of Fante Bukowski – Noah Van Sciver

Outstanding Comic

  • Cosmoknights – Hannah Templer
  • My Dog Ivy – Gabrielle Bell
  • Cry Wolf Girl – Ariel Ries
  • Theth Tomorrow Forever – Josh Bayer
  • Mooncakes – Wendy Xu & Suzanne Walker

Outstanding Graphic Novel

  • Hot Comb – Ebony Flowers
  • Pittsburgh – Frank Santoro
  • Skip – Molly Mendoza
  • How I Tried to be a Good Person – Ulli Lust
  • This Was Our Pact – Ryan Andrews

Outstanding Minicomic

  • The Gulf – Nguyen Nguyen
  • Chapter Two – Keren Katz
  • Canvas – Theo K. Stultz
  • I Feel Weird #4 – Haleigh Buck
  • Black Hole Heart – Cathy G Johnson

Outstanding Online Comic

  • I Exist – Breena Nuñez
  • Like the Tide – Isabella Rotman
  • SUPERPOSE – Joe Seosamh & C. Anka
  • Gabby Schulz (@gabbyschulz)
  • Witchy – Ariel Ries

Outstanding Series

  • The Misplaced – Chris Callahan
  • Fizzle – Whit Taylor
  • SUPERPOSE – Joe Seosamh & C. Anka
  • kuš! – kuš! komiks
  • Frontier – Youth in Decline

Outstanding Story

  • The Lab – Allison Conway
  • The Hard Tomorrow – Eleanor Davis
  • The Weight #9 – Melissa Mendes
  • “Little Red Riding Hood” – Inappropriate – Gabrielle Bell
  • BTTM FDRS – Ezra Daniels & Ben Passmore

Promising New Talent

  • AJ Dungo
  • Sylvia Nickerson
  • Theo Stultz
  • Emil Wilson
  • Andrew Lorenzi

SPX 2020 Has Been Canceled, Ignatz Awards Go Virtual

SPX

SPX 2020, originally scheduled for September 12 – 13 at the Bethesda North Marriott Hotel & Conference Center, will be canceled due to the effects of the COVID-19 outbreak. SPX will not have any in-person exhibitors room, programming, or Ignatz Awards ceremony.

The 2020 Ignatz Awards ceremony will be live-streamed on Saturday night, September 12, exact time TBD. The late-August timeframe will be the target date for the announcement of the details for the virtual awards ceremony.

Over the next few weeks, Small Press Expo will be developing both the process and platform as to how Ignatz voting will be held, with a target of mid-late July to announce the details to the SPX community on voting for this year’s nominees.

Due to the disruptions of the pandemic, the Ignatz submission timeframe has been extended to June 19.
Here is the information to submit works for the Ignatz 2020 Awards.

Small Press Expo is looking into holding some programming over the weekend of September 12, with a decision on this aspect of the show to come sometime this Summer.

Online Resources for the SPX Community

Part of the Small Press Expo’s mission is to help, as best they can, the SPX Community in uncertain times such as these. To that end, SPX has identified some online resources that contain information about various grants, relief funds, and other mechanisms to hopefully aid the SPX Community in weathering the current circumstances:

Almost American
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