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Wednesday, 24 June 2009

Starblazer Exhibition Details Announced

Time Frames 2009 ExhibitionAs we've previously reported, top comics writer Warren Ellis will be headlining the Comics Conference at this year's Dundee Literary Festival, but the Festival has now also released details of its planned exhibition dedicated to the 1980s SF comic Starblazer, published by DC Thomson.

The exhibition marks the first time artwork from the now defunct, but much missed British sci-fi comic Starblazer has been exhibited, which, in addition to art by the likes of Keith Robson, Jaimie Ortiz, Ian Kennedy and many others featured the early work of Grant Morrison, the hugley successful Glaswegian comics writer. The comic has such a cult status it's even recently spawned its own Roleplaying Game (see news story).

In addition to the exhibition, the publication's editor Bill McLoughlin and artist Keith Robson will discuss their experiences on Starblazer during the day.

Ellis, now best known for his work with US comics giants Marvel and DC, and relative newcomer, Avatar, will be discussing his career when he appears at the third annual Dundee Comics Day, part of the University of Dundee-organised Festival, on Sunday 28th June.

He's just one of a number of star names from the world of comics lined up to take part in the event, which features talks, exhibitions, book signings and workshops.

2000AD writer Alan Grant will also speak about his work while other speakers will discuss 2000AD. David Bishop, former editor of the comic, will discuss the work of Alan Moore, author of Watchmen, while other talks, delivered by scholars researching comics, will address how comics represent time.

The programme will begin with a workshop in Writing for Graphic Novels hosted by Bishop, which will prove an invaluable insight into the process of creating comics. Manga artist Emma Vieceli, creator of the recently released Much Ado About Nothing, a manga version of the Shakespeare play, will also discuss her creative process.

Comics Programme organiser Dr Christopher Murray said he is delighted to have been able to put together such an exciting line-up of authors, artists and writers.

"Comics are a wonderful form of literary and artistic expression," he feels. "They're entertaining for all ages, a unique artform blending words and images, and Dundee is a city with a long and proud history of comics production.

"The Third Annual Comics Day promises to be an important meeting of comics scholars and comics creators, and everyone with an interest in comics is welcome to attend. We're also proud to be be bringing together the considerable talents of writers Warren Ellis and Alan Grant, and artists Emma Vieceli and Keith Robson. Each year the annual Dundee Comics Day grows in profile and it is my intention to make it a staple event, underscoring Dundee's central position as the home of comic culture in the UK.

Comics Day not only gives the Festival a dimension not present in other literary celebrations, but also celebrates the city's position as a world leader in comics, established by the likes of The Beano and The Dandy, published by DC Thomson".

Tickets are priced £10/£5 (concessions) for the entire day's programme including workshops, and £3 for the workshop only.

The Dundee Literary Festival is now in its third year, and is bigger than ever, with star authors from the fields of philosophy, fiction, politics and poetry set to appear in Dundee. They include David Peace, renowned author of The Damned United and the Red-Riding Quartet and Straw Dogs writer John Gray. Talks, book signings, workshops and other events take place across four days.

• Exhibition Web Link: www.dundee.ac.uk/museum/starblazer.htm

• The full programme for the Dundee Literary Festival, and the Comics Day, is available online at www.dundeeliteraryfest.org

Read our Starblazer feature on the downthetubes main site by Jeremy Briggs

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