Over the weekend news broke that the Comica Festival Comiket – the twice yearly fair showcasing UK independent, micro and self-published comics due to be held at Central Saint Martins this Saturday 1st November – had been postponed until Spring 2015. The Comica Festival team have released a full and frank official statement below underlining the reasons for calling off the event and re-scheduling it for next year, including a promise to rethink the presentation of Comiket.
From my own perspective – and admittedly I say this entirely from the punter’s side of the exhibitor tables – Comiket has always been an occasion to find new and exciting work from unfamiliar creators who I may never have discovered otherwise. Rebecca Bagley, Alex Brady, Abbey Massey, Jazz Greenhill, Katie Craven, among many others over the years all spring to mind in that regard. Comiket also represented an invaluable opportunity in the early days of my ‘Small Pressganged’ column here at BF for establishing links with self-publishers and taking Broken Frontier’s commitment to small press coverage out on the road.
With both the Hackney Flea Market and the South East London Zine Fest scheduled on the same day as Comiket, and MCM, The Lakes, the Alternative Press Pop-Up, Thought Bubble and CECAF surrounding it in preceding and subsequent weeks it may well be that we have finally reached saturation point for Autumn comics events in the UK. Time will tell but, in the meantime, let’s hope that this veteran fair returns in the Spring revamped and redesigned as the vital London showcase for small press work that it has been in years past.
That full Comica statement, courtesy of Paul Gravett…
We are very sorry to say we have had to postpone the Comica Scarycat Comiket for 1 November 2014.
This has never happened in all the years since 2003 when we began.
We are re-planning an event for the spring of 2015.
Our summer Comiket at the British Library was brilliant, but the response to the Comica Scarycat Comiket has been lacklustre.
There are probably sensible reasons why this is. We were overambitious to present the event at such short notice. (We had several personal setbacks that had taken a few months to get over which hindered progress.)
We also think that there are just too many events that take place in the Autumn and that people find it difficult to decide what to do.
We feel we are at fault for not planning far enough ahead.
We had never intended that our event would in anyway compete with such large events as MCM Expo, Lakes Comics Art Festival and Thought Bubble, yet it seems they do.
We had to weigh up the balance between a short-term disappointment today or another disappointment on the day.
We certainly did not wish to go ahead with an event that was anything less than a showstopper
We are looking to the Spring of 2015. A redesign of the website and a rethink about how we present this event.
The rest of our Comica Festival 2014 programme proceeds as planned – see www.comicafestival.com