The CAKE 2018 Exhibitor Application Is Now Open!

November 6, 2017By Matt BradyCAKE, Exhibitors 2 Comments

We’re pleased to announce that CAKE is now accepting applications to exhibit at CAKE 2018! Next year’s Chicago Alternative Comics Expo will take place June 2–3 at the Center on Halsted. You can apply here: https://goo.gl/forms/55w4ftpBYnCHMqMU2. The application period will run until November 30, so we encourage you to take your time and put together a strong application.

CAKE is a curated show, and the organizers aim to highlight the best artists, both established and emerging, working in independent and alternative comics, displaying equal care for small press publishers and self-publishing artists. Through a jurying process that involves many members of Chicago’s comics community, we strive to create the diverse and representative festival for which CAKE has become known. Additionally, we strive to produce a demographically inclusive show that reflects, encourages, and advances the full depth and breadth of artists working in our community.

CAKE’s standard table space is a half table (3′ x 2.5′). A registration fee of $65 is due upon acceptance into CAKE. There is no application fee. Please direct any questions to exhibitors@cakechicago.com. We will reply to all queries as quickly as possible.

The Chicago Alternative Comics Expo (CAKE) is a weekend-long celebration of independent comics, inspired by Chicago’s rich legacy as home to many of underground and alternative comics’ most talented artists–past, present, and future. Featuring comics for sale, workshops, exhibitions, panel discussions, and more, CAKE is dedicated to fostering community and dialogue among independent artists, small presses, publishers, and readers. The seventh annual CAKE will take place Saturday, June 2, and Sunday, June 3, 2018, at the Center on Halsted, 3656 North Halsted Avenue in Chicago. For any questions about CAKE, please email cake@cakechicago.com.

CAKE 2017 Debuts!

June 9, 2017By NeilCAKE, Debuts, Exhibitors No Comments

Every year, we are honored to see comics artists use CAKE as a venue to debut new comics.  Be the first person on the planet to get a copy of these new and innovative titles! You can view our debuts on our 2017 Debut page.
Here are a few titles that will be debuting at the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo on June 10 & 11:

Destroyed Cell

by Andy Glass
Table 109b
A new series from Chicago cartoonist Andy Glass. DESTROYED CELL – A hyper-realistic, paranoid and poetic adventure set in a (possible?) future of oppression, resistances, mutation and cataclysmic change! 32 pp, b/w

Half Asleep Volume 7

by Beth Hetland and Kyle O’Connell
Table 502a
The PENULTIMATE volume of Beth and Kyle’s series, Half Asleep! After being submerged for an entire volume in her dreams, some time later and back in reality Ivy begins her journey to the end.
Series summary– at age 11 Ivy Lassette is the youngest student enrolled at the elite college, Ebony-Alerca. Ivy’s studies focus on Hypnology, an experimental discipline that teaches students how to access and inhabit their dream worlds with the same conscious control they experience in waking reality. Ivy’s world-renown and highly demanding professor also happens to be her mother, Dr. Michelle Lassette. Follow Ivy and Dr. Lassette as they navigate the layers of existence attempting to understand the world, each other, and themselves.

Chicago in the Fall

by Cathy Hannah
Table 410b
Diary comic with daily four-panel strips from September – November 2016. About cats, naps, and boys

Is This OK? #7

by Hannah Kaplan
Table 517b
The seventh issue in annually published diary comics series by Hannah Kaplan, “Is This OK?” is a 28-page full-color mini-comic. It contains recent comics drawn entirely in colored pencil. The comics touch on issues such as the recent election, relationships, and the ups and downs in the daily life of a woman in her early thirties who is finally realizing the finitude of life. It’s very funny. You need not have read any other comics in the series to enjoy this publication.

Umbra

by Heberto BICIO
Table 222b
A book about playing with shadows and revealing secrets.

100

by Nou
Table 515
Can you see the answers are all here?

Shadow Hills 10

by Sean Ford
Table 22a
This is the 10th issue of Shadow Hills. It’s the last part in a story about a plague that hits a fracking town and two sisters who are trying to find a way to stop it.
Shadow Hills 10 is a 24pp black and white comic book with full color cover. It is 6.5″ x 8.5″ and printed on nice paper. This issue features a special back cover drawn by Alex Kim. Check out his comics and drawings on Instagram @atronkim

Kindling

by Xia Gordon
Table 515
lines, lights, and emotions.

Workshop: Visual Recipes: The Art of Instructional Comics

June 8, 2017By Mike FreiheitCAKE, Comics Around Town, Debuts, Exhibitors, Programming, Special Guests No Comments

June 11th, 1:30–2:30 p.m.  Visual Recipes: The Art of Instructional Comics

Do you have a special skill, piece of secret knowledge, family recipe, or weird trick that just has to be shared with the world? Learn how to simply and clearly teach it through the medium of comics. Jessi Zabarsky, who accomplished this very feat in her comic I Want To Eat Everything, will guide participants through the process, showing what it takes to create beautiful and comprehensible instructional comics, using techniques that will help artists make better comics in any genre.  This workshop is sponsored by Revolution Brewing and is appropriate for all ages.

Workshop: Signs of the Times: Abstracting Adaptation

June 8, 2017By Mike FreiheitCAKE, Exhibitors, Programming, Special Guests No Comments

June 11th, 3:00–4:00 p.m. Signs of the Times: Abstracting Adaptation

Ron Regé, Jr., is best known for his adaptations of mystical and esoteric texts (The Cartoon Utopia, What Parsifal Saw), but throughout his career he has maintained an interest in the here and now, reflecting on the contemporary political climate. His most recent work, the Regé Deck, a set of cards for divination, responds to current events by reinterpreting Expressionist drawings made by Herman Rosse for Ben Hecht’s 1920s column 1001 Afternoons in Chicago. Regé will describe how he created this project and lead participants through the same process of concentrating complex ideas into the simplest possible statements, using images from the past to wrestle with the present—and maybe create a better future.  This workshop is sponsored by Spudnik Press.

Panel: Comics and Resistance

June 8, 2017By Mike FreiheitCAKE, Debuts, Exhibitors, Programming, Special Guests No Comments

June 11th, 11:30–12:30 p.m. Comics and Resistance

This year, as right-wing extremism has produced a reality-television presidency, Brexit, and the specter of a neo-Nazi-led France, the question emerges: Can activism manifest as art? In this panel discussion, cartoonists Leila Abdelrazaq,  Ben Passmore, Isabella Rotman, and Bianca Xunise will address how comics can galvanize populations to action. Although these artists address varied issues in their work—black alienation, the Palestinian diaspora, sexuality, and intersectionality, to name just a few—their comics are united by their political engagement and how they use the medium to reflect, and critique, society.

This panel is sponsored by Perfectly Acceptable Press.

CAKE 2017 Debuts!

June 7, 2017By NeilCAKE, Debuts, Exhibitors No Comments

Every year, we are honored to see comics artists use CAKE as a venue to debut new comics.  Be the first person on the planet to get a copy of these new and innovative titles! You can view our debuts on our 2017 Debut page.
2dcloud has brought their unique comics voice every year to CAKE. Here are the titles they will be debuting at the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo on June 10 & 11. Be sure to visit them at table 515:

Architecture of An Atom

by Juliacks
With Architecture of an Atom, internationally recognized multi-disciplinary artist Juliacks brings her trans-media project to the print realm. Characterized by critics as a member of the immersive school of cartooning, she has sought to trouble the boundaries between fine art and comics throughout her career. A socially conscious, layered work in every sense of the word.

Mirror Mirror II

by Julia Gfrörer & Sean T. Collins
For volume two of 2dcloud’s annual anthology, editors Julia Gfrörer & Sean T. Collins have amassed some of the darkest talents within as well as outside of comics to create a wholly singular reading and visual experience. From masters of horror like Clive Barker to leading figures in altcomics such as Simon Hanselmann, this collection transcends the expectations of what a comics anthology can do. Lala Albert Clive Barker Heather Benjamin Apolo Cacho Sean Christensen Nicole Claveloux Sean T. Collins Al Columbia Dame Darcy Noel Freibert Renee French Meaghan Garvey Julia Gfrörer Simon Hanselmann Claude Paradin Aidan Koch Laura Lannes Céline Loup Uno Moralez Mou Jonny Negron Chloe Piene Josh Simmons Carol Swain Trungles

Sound of Snow Falling

by Maggie Umber
A paint and paper documentary, observing great horned owls in their natural habitat.
Sound of Snow Falling is a graphic novel done in a poetic documentary mode. In this unique work, the reader becomes a voyeur of the natural world, following a great horned owl family through the dead of winter. Extensively researched and expressively painted, Sound of Snow Falling is a triumph of the comics form.

Yours

by Sarah Ferrick
With Yours, the notions of art, poetry, and form collapse into one of the most singular approaches to comics in recent memory. Ferrick’s intimate love letters read as both a confession and a seduction.

Extended Play

by Jake Terrell
Extended Play, the debut collection by Jake Terrell, seizes upon the millennial zeitgeist from an array of angles. From the haze of summer to the conflicting feelings of ennui and hope that guide the figures in Terrell’s magical realist landscapes, there’s an effortlessness to his work that obscures the heightened sense of understanding he brings to the form. Jake Terrell is a cartoonist and illustrator based in Brooklyn, NY. His comics have a loose, confident line, often focusing on a youth-centric cast of characters written into magical realist or measured fantastical narratives.
“Extended Play” is an apt title. The pleasure of Terrell’s line, and his storytelling, is infectious. It’s a battle cry for cartooning as mark making, as line design, for thinking of drawing as handwriting and a form of searching and discovery. It may be his first book, but already he seems to understand what IT is, better than most. I could read his work all day long. — Sammy Harkham

What’s a punch card?

June 3, 2017By Mike FreiheitCAKE, Comics Around Town, Debuts, Exhibitors, Programming, Special Guests No Comments

You can get free stuff at CAKE 2017 just for buying comics! What?!

It’s true! When you get your program from the info booth upon entering, there will be a detachable punch card. When you buy something from an artist, have them write down their name and the price of what you bought. The more stuff you buy, the more free things you get.

$15-25: A show poster and a set of CAKE buttons!

$26-65: A show poster, a set of buttons, and a set of stickers!

$66+: Receive everything, plus a limited edition risograph print by BEN PASSMORE, printed by Perfectly Acceptable Press!

CAKE 2017 DEBUTS!

June 2, 2017By NeilCAKE, Debuts, Exhibitors No Comments

Every year, we are honored to see comics artists use CAKE as a venue to debut new comics.  Be the first person on the planet to get a copy of these new and innovative titles! You can view our debuts on our 2017 Debut page.
Here are a few titles that will be debuting at the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo on June 10 & 11:

Soft Power: an anthology

Edited by Erin K Drew and Alicia Obermeyer
Table 207b
The first ever Pubes and ‘Tudes anthology will amplify disgusting attitudes towards the hegemonic status quo. It is a 28-page riso-printed collection of drawings by 13 multi-disciplinary artists living in Chicago, Indianapolis, or roving around the states.

The bar date

by Alan D Caesar
Table 226a
A fluorescent series of odd moments from bar dates, featuring a badger, shark, hundreds of groundhogs in a trenchcoat and at lest one cat on fire.

Orbiting

by Penina Gal
Table 502b
“Orbiting” is a poetic comic exploring themes of anxiety, insecurity, community, and belonging. 60 pages, 2-color riso printed.

In the Middle of the Night

by Nicole Del Rio
Table 314b
A book of drawings and comics about anxieties of personal friendships, daily life commitments, and self worth

Open Letter to Sleep

by Alyssa Berg
Table 415a
Open Letter to Sleep is a 32-page, Risograph printed love letter to insomnia. The epic poem was made in November 2016 for 30 Days of Comics (a comic a day for the month of November) and printed at the SVA RisoLab in 2017.

Panel: Fantagraphics 40th Anniversary

June 1, 2017By Mike FreiheitCAKE, Exhibitors, Programming, Special Guests No Comments

June 10th, 3:00–4:00 p.m. Fantagraphics 40th Anniversary Spotlight

Since its founding in 1976 by Gary Groth and Mike Catron (who were joined a year later by Kim Thompson), Fantagraphics has been changing the landscape of comics. In addition to championing work by many of the greatest alternative cartoonists of all time, such as Dan Clowes, the Hernandez Brothers, Carol Tyler, and many more, Fantagraphics has issued comics reprints that archive the history of the medium that might otherwise have been lost and has provided, in The Comics Journal, a venue for critical inquiry into the form long before comics studies was an academic discipline. We Told You So: Comics As Art collects the oral history of this influential company, assembled by comics historian and critic Tom Spurgeon (with co-author Michael Dean). Spurgeon, the editor and founder of the award-winning Comics Reporter website and festival director of Cartoon Crossroads Columbus, will present a slideshow outlining the history of Fantagraphics and its position in the alternative comics movement. He will be joined by cartoonists Ivan Brunetti (Schizo, Misery Loves Comedy), Anya Davidson (Band For Life) and Noah Van Sciver (Disquiet, Saint Cole).

This panel is sponsored by Fantagraphics.