This past weekend I had a chance to check out this year’s Expozine here in Montreal, it’s an event dedicated to independent zines, comic books, and small press that gets Canadian wide artists attending. The event is normally packed so I never take photos at the event itself but I thought like last year I’d share what I picked up and enjoyed from Expozine.
One thing about this year’s event that I would like to say, since I did attend to support the artists and there was a boycott due to accessibility options not being provide, is that I am fully willing to boycott any Expozine going forward if that issue is not address. The controversy came up in what I personally thought was not enough time ahead of the event for the event organizers to resolve it, and that the artists weren’t given the adequate chance to decide their participation at the event with this knowledge. I felt uncomfortable with boycotting and missing the event this year as many artists attending depend on it for a variety of reasons. However I do support the people who did boycott and think it’s important the organizers make sure Expozine 2016 is fully accessible. Montreal is the worst city I’ve lived in or visited for accessibility; the whole city is very unkind to anyone who needs mobility options to get around. When I first moved here 6 years ago it was actually one of the first things I noticed about living here. Just it’s lack of elevators, escalators, or ramps and so many community buildings, metro stations, etcetera have prevalent inaccessibility issues. Although I am fully mobile, I do suffer from a lifelong genetic disease that effects my knees and legs, so I suffer from pain and have a slight limp when walking which means I often use elevators and escalators when I can to avoid pain (not to mention when I dislocate my knees every few years due to the disease and have to use crutches to get around). It’s a big problem and I’d hate to think people who wanted to attend this event – couldn’t. I hope it’s something the organizers are taking seriously because it’s something that’s important to a community and Expozine should be about fostering community not dividing it.
Okay, so now with that out in the air let’s have a look at what artist’s work I discovered this year!
Shimotsuma was my favourite zine of the event, with its wonderful colors, vivid illustrations and theme. It’s a 40 paged limited collaboration zine between various artists and it’s extremely well put together. I also picked up a sticker and ogled Fangrrlz sweaters and t-shirts (there is this bomb anime girl with a splitting head tshirt), sadly they weren’t at the table when I picked it up so I didn’t get a chance to speak with them. You can check them out here!
From Lovestruck Prints I picked up a bunch of stickers. The color combinations were impossible to resist. I already have her collab zine with Starchild Stela “Sweet Treats” which is fabulous. Check her out here!
Aventurosaure is a great pure illustrative comic by Julien Pare-Sorel that he made over the course of October for #inktober. I love dinosaurs so I loved this immediately and had to pick it up. For anyone who bought Aventursaure he did a custom drawing live on the spot while signing the book, below I have my Kathryosaur and you check out my Instagram video of him working on it. He also does amazing comics in French, check more of him out here!
I feel terrible as I forgot who made these hand drawn skulls on dollies. I asked for a business card because I am very forgetful but she didn’t have one and I’ve spent more than 20min on Expozine website trying to find the store name…sorry!
Fox Point Paper & Design had the cutest display, and one the best distractions from life – coloring books. Very kid friendly but also aimed at adults. I had to buy their Canadian colouring book, two in fact so I can gift one away. Not to mention their unicorn postcards you can color and Pet Unicorn Activity book (sucker for anything unicorn).Thier hipster coloring book was also very tongue in cheek as I imagine hipsters would love thier store, you can check them out here!
I didn’t buy much this time and there is always a high number only in French (mostly amazing comics) so I’d encourage you to check out the Expozine website to get the full list of artists and check some of them out.