Monday, June 23, 2014

E is for ... Erlangen + Energy + Express yourself

(a different kind of book post, which also belongs to the A to Z series. enjoy!)

For 4 days in June the city of Erlangen turns into comic world and hosts the largest comic festival of Germany. That's where i've been the last days: at the "Comic Salon", or rather: in the comic universe.

Included below is a map of Erlangen, and the Comic Salon flyer. Erlangen is an university city, and is one of those places where almost everything seems to be in walking distance. 

And here's a photo of one of the festival halls... it was still fine to walk through, and there was a great creative energy: so many books and stories, so many images and persons. There's no way to see all or read all, but that also goes for life at large, right? So the key was: to go with the flow, and to pick single books, and try to keep the focus... 

..and make time for the exhbitions.
One of the focus themes was the First World War. The largest exhbition was dedicated
to the work of  artists who keep the memory from fading, and who face
the tragedies of war in their work, like Jaques Tardi, who said:
"The only thing that interests me is man and his suffering, and it fills me with rage.
This is our history, Europe’s history, and the 20th century’s—the century of industrialization
and death, born in Sarajevo..." (more)

it was touching to walk through the city itself, and walk into this outside exhibition,
a town-square-size war leporello by Joe Sacco: once it was war, right there, in this place.

for more images, try this link which leads from the war leporello to the other themes
of Erlangen: Erlangen Comic Salon with Joe Sacco 

Some hours later, in the same place: a rave for human rights.

One of the great things about Erlangen is that it is a hotspot for the independent comic scene, 
and so you get to see books that officially don't even exist, according to the ISBN-catalogues.. and even more so, in Erlangen they are honoured with an own prize. The book in the middle received the Indie Comic Prize of the year 2014: "Lescheks Flug", a modern version of Metropolis, with a robot as main character.   
And "Frank" is a modern Frankenstein story, set in an university...

... and here are the same book, but with open pages - yey comics!

More than 400 artists were attending the festival.
This is a photo from the indie comic prize awards:

There also were a lot of international artists in Erlangen.
Below is a photo of Marc Lizano, from France. Earlier this month, I read his graphic novel "Hidden - A Child's Story of the Holocaust". So special to see him in person, and to even get the chance to talk.
(more about the book, here in the previous book post)

sometimes a book also is a painting.. 

beyond the books and the artists that expressed themselves in their stories and images... there were the visitors. some of them expressed themselves directly, and arrived as magic characters or as superheroes: Express yourself!

in addition to the comic focus, it's world cup days - watching the games in a group, after having spent the day at the comic fair with so many people, made me think of a line of advice from the previous world cup.
this is from a yoga lesson, about crowd energies:

“the euphory of being in a crowd takes energy from you. so be a bit careful these days.” it makes sense, even on a physical level: crowd energy is coming from doses of individual energy, and adds up. and if you leave the crowd, you feel a kind of down / emptiness / loominess at some point afterwards."

- the end of the post -
(for now. so many moments.... will blog about the comic exhibitions in an extra post)
(and oh, all those e-words! end, exhibition, extra, emptiness, energy)

more books
more A to Z


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