Monday, June 30, 2008

Historietas

While Latin American creators of comics, which they call historietas, face the same market forces that we do here (domination by superheroes and manga), they keep producing quality art, often publishing it themselves. My encounter started in August of 2006 at a book fair in Mendoza, Argentina, where I met Cristian Mallea of La Productora, a self-publishing collective based in Buenos Aires. Cristian served as my guide to the rich world of contemporary Latin American comics. I visited La Productora’s workshop regularly and traveled with them to conventions in Uruguay and Bolivia (Viñetas de Altura), where I met cartoonists from all over Latin America.

La Productora are considered to be part of the younger generation compared to the Argentina’s classical creators (Lalia, Alberto Breccia, Oesterheld etc.). Their work appears in the newly revived Fierro magazine. Angel Mosquito, another member of La Productora and Mallea run a comics workshop for local kids and teach at the newly formed Comics Design program at the University of Palermo in Buenos Aires. La Productora’s political anthology Carne Argentina was translated into French and presented in an exhibit on Argentine comics at Angouleme, France.

My incomplete list

Bolivia

Joaquín Cuevas makes a funny political strip as well as narratively solid silent comics.

Frank Arbelo (born in Cuba)

El Marco Toxico

Argentina

Cristian Mallea

Angel Mosquito: appears on the website Historietas Reales, which showcases the work of a number of contemporary creators.

Gervasio

Thomas Desscance: Born in France. Publishes comic magazines Revista Ex Abrupto and, with others, Suda Mery K,!, which that mix European and Latin American cartoonists.

Salvador Sanz

Ernán

Peru

Jorge Perez-Ruibal has a wild and detailed style that mixes humor and vulgarity.

Mexico

Ricardo Peláez

Colombia

Joni B and Nomás are part of the team that produces the free pamphlet Robot, which includes comics and prose humor.

Uruguay

Rodulfo Santullo publishes a number of talented artists.

Guacho

Chile

As a member of Ergocomics, Cristian Reyes is a talented creator and staunch advocate for Latin American comics.

Cristiano makes autobiographical and political comic strips.

Brazil

Fabio Zimbres’s comic that I bought reads like a Brazilian James Kochalka, but he does other stuff to.