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Henry Northmore talks to project curator Mel Brimfield about the cross-genre, multi-platform Comic Book Project

lie ('omic Book Project is vvillully' hard to categorise. It takes comic book art and concepts as its core. with an exhibition at the (‘olleetive Gallery. but also encompasses events at the Film Festival. Book Festival and Fringe. taking iii music. comedy. perl'oriiiance and animation. "l‘he idea was to ptit together visual artists with v'at‘iotis dil'l’erent

performers and cartoonists to come up with a series ol

generic comic strips.’ explains project curator Mel Briml‘ield. ‘What's emerged is less specific; it‘s become a starting point for a book. and from the book a programme of events.‘

The book in question. ()ur ('omic Book Project (Revolver) edited by Briml'ield. brings together comedians. artists. writers. filmmakers and actors to create works based oti comic strips. But the hook took oti a life of its ovvti. becoming a jumping oil point for further collaborations and projects.

‘lt's abottt combining audiences and bringing iiew People into art] says“ Briml'ield. ‘For instance we have John Hegley' appearing at the opening for the gallery. Obviously he has his own audience which is entirely separate from art and hopefully they'll dip iii and out of the other things to.‘

It's these ‘other things‘ that really give this exhibition an edge. Yellow Jacket by Brian [)ewan will be a live recording of a new radio show based on the popularity of I940s serials such as Superman atid ’l‘lte (ireen Hornet. Dewan will lead a lull musical ensemble while the likes of John Hegley and Sir Gideon Vein will provide the voice work. At the Film Festival Losr & Sound: From the Collection of Mark .\'eirgunlen


screens some ol cartoonist \ewgardcn's c\tensi\e collection ol‘ l'ound liliii l'ootage. ‘I went to meet \lai'k and discovered he had this beaiitil'iil collection ol l'otind lilms. hundreds and hundreds ol them. he’s aii avid collector. I asked it he‘d be interested in putting [Oi—'L‘lik‘l' it \L‘ict‘lltilt. .’\llti because Lt ltil Hi. litctil w ci'c silent it just seemed to make sense that some ol the PCI'FUI'IHCIN in tile lititik L'l'citlc l‘cspiillscs to them: Finally there's the Book Festival event. which leattii'es readings. pcrl'oi'niaiices ll‘tllll the likes ol .loliii llegley and Sit/antic .-\tidrade. and Simon \lunnery interviewing himsell by live satellite liiikriip.

With such an eclectic line-up. you’d assume it would have been challenging to get everyone reading troni the same page. ‘()nce I'd introduced various artists atid perl‘orniers to each other they immediately understood why I had used them." says Briinl'ield. ‘lt was like some itiad dating game. they ’d arrange to meet tip and show each other their work. get together and have a chat. It was actually easier than you‘d think

.-\rtists and writers like ('hris \Vai'c icreator ol' ./lllll)l\ ('orrieon. The Smartest Kid in lllt' World. the lust graphic novel to win the (itiardian First Book .v\wai'di. Harvey l’ekar t.-lnierituii Splenilori and Daniel ('low es ((iliovr llin'ltli are pushing comics iii a new direction. opening them tip to new audiences. 'l‘his loving celebration ol‘ the comic lorni just proves how wide and versatile a genre it can be. showcasing the talent involved and bringing new pcrl'orniers into the told to push at the boundaries ol~ what comics can ol‘l‘cr.

For full details see Hitlist, right.

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Yellow Jacket See prey/ten. page left. Traverse 3 IEIJi/ilmrgli Dri/l Hal/i. 6 Aug.

Lost & Sound: From the Collection of Mark Newgarden See ores/new, page left. The Fl/flillOL/SQ. 23 Aug.

' ' Suzanne Andrade, Brian Dewan, John Hegley 8: Simon Munnery See preview. page left. Charlotte Square Gardens. 26 Aug.