A look at the thriving comics and graphic novel scene in the Nordic region
Comic artists from Finland and Denmark present their work. Kaisa Leka's illustrated talk, You could also look normal if you’d just wear pants, describes the life of a disabled woman in the world today, and how comic art responds to disability, and Karoline Stjernfelt tells us about her prize-winning graphic history, I Morgen Bliver Bedre (Tomorrow will be better), bringing 18th-century Danish court intrigue to life.
Dr Nina Mickwitz gives an introductory talk on contemporary comics cultures in the Nordic region, as a milieu and creative sector. Personal stories often involve a broader social and political dimension and, as the feminist adage goes: ‘the personal is political.’ This idea resonates with the works by both Kaisa Leka and Karoline Stjernfelt, if in their own and very different ways. Her introduction also offers thoughts on the phenomenon of comics as a vehicle for expressing and negotiating identity, and for revisionist exploration of historical pasts
Free | Ticket required
This event is part of the British Library’s first Nordic Cultural Roundtable. There are displays from cultural institutes and projects available to view all day, including a glimpse of the exhibition Hero(ine)s, which reimagines comic heroes in their female form, first shown at The Lakes International Comic Art Festival in 2018.
Kaisa Leka is a Finnish comic artist and adventurer who, together with her faithful sherpa Christoffer Leka, publishes autobiographical books about the nature of being. She has been awarded the Finnish Comics Society’s prestigious Puupäähattu prize and several of the duo’s books have received design prizes such as Grafia’s Gold Award.
Karoline Stjernfelt is a comic book artist/author working in Copenhagen. Her main body of work is the critically acclaimed 18th-century graphic novel trilogy I Morgen Bliver Bedre, which won the Ping Award and the Claus Delauran Award for Best Debut in 2016. She is currently working on the second volume.
Dr Nina Mickwitz is a Lecturer at London College of Communication, a founding member of the Comics Research Hub at UAL , and the author of Documentary Comics: Graphic Truth-telling in a Skeptical Age (Palgrave 2016). She co-edited the companion collections Contexts of Violence in Comics and Representing Acts of Violence in Comics (Routledge 2019) with Dr Ian Hague and Dr Ian Horton. Current research interests include mobilities and negotiations of social norms and identities in comics, as well as the transnational mobilities of comics themselves
In collaboration with the Finnish Institute and the Embassy of Denmark in the United Kingdom
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