TCAF Japan 2012 Exhibition Details

We here at TCAF are delighted to announce the details of our first-ever exhibition of Canadian comics culture abroad, centering around the Kaigai Manga Festa in Tokyo, Japan, November 18th. This trip will encompass many diverse facets of Canadian comics, featuring artists from across Canada, exhibitions, gallery shows, and installation art, as well as numerous sales opportunities for Canadian books and graphic novels. In short, we’re expecting a tremendous success for our first internaitional visit, and we invite anyone who’s able to come and be a part of it.

TCAF Japan 2012 Exhibition Details: Overview

TCAF 10th Anniversary Booklet (for sale at Kaigai Manga Festa)

November 13th: En Masse Exhibition Design Festa Gallery, Harajuku (until November 15th)
November 15th: TCAF Presents: Canada Comic Arts, Original Art and Book Exhibition at Presspop Gallery, Parco Book Center (until December 2nd)
November 18th: Kaigai Manga Festa, Tokyo, Japan
November 18th (Evening): Comics ‘Talk Show’ and Reading, Presspop Gallery, Parco Book Center

Participating Exhibitors, Authors and Staff: 
Publishers: Drawn & Quarterly (Publisher Chris Oliveros), Koyama Press (Assistant Publisher Helen Koyama, Daniel Nishio), UDON Entertainment (Publisher Erik Ko)
Authors: Rupert Bottenberg, Omar Dogan, Jeffrey Ellis, Agnes Garbowska, Dax Gordine, Love Love Hill (Collective featuring Wai Au, Kim Hoang, Julie Man), David Namisato, Benjamin Rivers, Miguel Sternberg, Maurice Vellekoop.
TCAF Staff: Christopher Butcher (Director), Peter Birkemoe (Co-Founder), Andrew Woodrow-Butcher (Site Coordinator), Jocelyne Allen (Japanese Guest Liaison), Gary Sherman (General Assistant)

Full author biographies below.


TCAF 10th Anniversary Doujinshi (Booklet): TCAF is producing a full colour, original ‘doujinshi’ (self-published work) to be debuted exclusively at Kaigai Manga Festa. Designed as an introduction to TCAF and its history of diverse artistic styles, the book will feature all of the poster art produced for TCAF from 2003 to 2013, as well as other promotional and gift artworks. Also included are two original Japanese language ‘diary comics’ by 2011 featured guests Natsume Ono and Usamaru Furuya, detailing their trips to Toronto, Canada!

Featured are festival posters and other illustrations by Canadian and international talent, including

Canada: Marc Bell, Darwyn Cooke, Bryan Lee O’Malley, Seth, Jillian Tamaki, Peter Thompson, Noel Tuazon, Maurice Vellekoop
Japan: Usamaru Furuya, Natsume Ono, Yoshihiro Tatsumi
International: Gabriel Ba & Fabio Moon, Daniel Clowes, Evan Dorkin, James Jean, Jim Mahfood

The TCAF 10th Anniversary Doujinshi will go on sale at Kaigai Manga Festa on November 18th.

Schedule of events:

TCAF Presents: En Masse in Tokyo

at Design Festa Gallery WEST Room 1-D
November 13th to November 15th
3-20-18, Jingumae, Shibuya-ku, Tokyo 150-0001
Free to attend

TCAF is proud to present: En Masse in Tokyo, an exhibition of original Canadian artworks at Design Festa Gallery. Harajuku, Tokyo, Japan.

EN MASSE is a Montreal based, multi-artist collaborative drawing project.  It draws life from the many creative individuals who take part in the project to create large-scale, highly spontaneous drawings in black and white.

On Tuesday, November 13th, a group of Canadian and Japanese artists led by En Masse mainstay Rupert Bottenberg will collaboratively create three brand new works from blank canvas’, with the public invited to (unobtrusively) view the creation process. Then, from the 13th to the 15th, all three new narrative art works will be on display and for sale at the legendary Design Festa Gallery, founded by acclaimed contemporary artist Takeshi Murakami.

This will be a phenomenal opportunity for Canadian authors, artists, and graphic novelists to mix with their Japanese counterparts to create unique new cross-cultural collaborations.

TCAF Presents: “Canada Comic Arts”

November 15th to December 2nd (Speaking Event November 18, 7pm)
Place: Shibuya Parco Part One B1F, Inside Parco Book Center at Presspop Gallery.

日時:11月15日(木) ~12月02日(日)
会場:渋谷パルコ part1 地下1 パルコ・ブックセンター内  PRESSPOP GALLERY にて。
トークショー(予定):同会場にて、11月18日(日) 19:00~

Release in English:
Release in Japanese:

We are proud to present “Canada Comics Arts” curated by TCAF of Canada.

In trying to give us a chance to glimpse the presently expanding exciting comics and arts scene in Canada, TCAF has selected and brought over original artworks by amazing artists, Maurice Vellekoop and Love Love Hill, and also books by Canadian artists of their choice. The TCAF crew, artists, and publishers will be in store on November 18th from 19:00 to discuss what’s going on now in the Canadian comics/art/publishing scene. Authors will read short excerpts of selected works. Don’t miss out on this rare chance!

In addition, a selection of sculptures will be exhibited by Canadian graphic novelist Geneviève Castrée. Information at


The Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) exists to promote the diversity and breadth of the comics medium, and what are considered comics. This is accomplished through a large-scale annual exhibition in Toronto,and year-round promotion of Canadian cartoonists and comics authors. TCAF has welcomed more than 1000 exhibiting cartoonists from 18 different countries since its inception in 2003.

This exhibition of work expresses the diversity of theme, media, and background of TCAF, with participating artists from across Canada,specifically Vancouver, Toronto, and Montreal. The common theme is a commitment to personal expression, and a uniquely Canadian merging of influences and styles from classic and contemporary illustration, western comics, manga and anime, and fan-produced Japanese doujinshi.

TCAF アーティスト・ステートメント

TCAF(トロント・コミック・アーツ・フェスティバル )はコミックという媒体の多様さと幅広さ、そしてコミックと称されるものには何が含まれるか、を奨励するための団体です。 その使命を果たすために、TCAFは年に一回トロントで大規模な展示会を開催し、そして年間を通じてカナダの漫画家やコミック作家の奨励に務めています。2003年の発端以降、TCAFは18にも及ぶ国々から1000人以上の漫画家を紹介してきました。


壁 作品展示作家

Author biographies for Maurice Vellekoop and Love Love Hill Collective below.

Kaigai Manga Festa, Tokyo, Japan

Featuring The Toronto Comic Arts Festival & Canadian Authors
Tokyo Big Sight, East-West Atrium, 3-11-1 Ariake, Koutou-ku, Tokyo
11:00am to 4:00pm
Admission 1000yen ($12.50CDN)

Kaigai Manga Festa is the first ever Tokyo exhibition of international comics and graphic novels. Featuring a selection of outstanding authors from around the world, including Katsuhiro Otomo (Akira), Naoki Urasawa (Pluto, 20th Century Boys), Benoit Peeters and Francois Shuiten (Cities of the Fantastic), Emmanuel LePage (Muchacho), and Regis Loisel (Peter Pan), the festival is attracted to draw tens of thousands of attendees and comics authors, interested in international comics.

TCAF will be on hand to represent Canadian comics culture, with the support of Canadian publishers Drawn & Quarterly, Koyama Press, and UDON Entertainment, and alongside major publisher pavillions from France, Germany, Korea, Singapore, The United States, and Japan.

12 Canadian authors will participate in TCAF’s exhibition, with both books and visual arts on display. Authors include Rupert Bottenberg, Omar Dogan, Jeffrey Ellis, Agnes Garbowska, Dax Gordine, Love Love Hill (Collective featuring Wai Au, Kim Hoang, Julie Man), David Namisato, Benjamin Rivers, Miguel Sternberg, Maurice Vellekoop. Full artists biographies follow at the bottom of this message.

In addition, TCAF has created an original doujinshi in honour of the Festival’s 10th Anniversary, celebrating the wonderful original artwork that has been created to represent the festival.

TCAF feels is important to support this fledgling literary event in its first year to help it grow and thrive, and to encourage the promotion of Canadian culture, specifically Canadian graphic novels and authorship, internationally.

Participating Authors & Exhibitors

TCAF Staff:
Christopher Butcher – Festival Director, Co-Founder
Peter Birkemoe – Festival Co-Founder
Andrew Woodrow-Butcher – Volunteer Coordinator
Jocelyne Allen – Japanese Guest Liaison
Gary Sherman – French Language Assistant

Christopher Butcher received an Audience Development Grant from the Canada Council for the Arts, in order to support the promotion of TCAF abroad.

We acknowledge the support of the Canada Council for the Arts, which last year invested $154 million to bring the arts to Canadians throughout the country.
Nous remercions le Conseil des arts du Canada de son soutien. L’an dernier, le Conseil  a investi 154 millions de dollars pour mettre de l’art dans la vie des Canadiennes et des Canadiens de tout le pays.


Exhibiting Publishers

Drawn & Quarterly
Represented by Publisher Chris Oliveros

With cartoonists that have been instrumental in defining the literary comics medium for the past twenty years and a willingness to experiment with formats and concepts, Drawn & Quarterly has become one of the most influential art and literary comics publishers in North America, if not the whole world.

Back in 1989, Chris Oliveros humbly went in search of artists to contribute to his yet-to-be-published magazine anthology named Drawn & Quarterly. Armed with a honed aesthetic, he advertised in different venues and approached promising artists. As a result, Oliveros assembled the most esteemed and distinct coterie of cartoonists since the days of Art Spiegelman’s RAW.

Oliveros’s visual acumen and astute production values coupled with the complete editorial and creative freedom offered to the cartoonists enabled D+Q to make an immediate mark in the world of comics. After several anthologies, comic book series and graphic novels, D+Q has established an elite and varied roster of cartoonists that includes Adrian Tomine, Seth, Chester Brown, Joe Matt, Julie Doucet, Chris Ware, Charles Burns, and James Sturm, who are considered to be some of the medium’s best and are synonymous with Drawn & Quarterly. Growing more ambitious every year, the publisher takes on new comic books, art books, and graphic novels by renowned cartoonists and newcomers from around the globe.

Koyama Press
Represented by Associate Publisher Helen Koyama, assistants Robin Nishio, Daniel Nishio
Koyama Press was founded in 2007 to sponsor projects with emerging artists. The rationale behind the enterprise is to fund projects with the intention to promote emerging artists. In addition to publishing books, the company has financed such diverse projects as zines, comics, artist designed t-shirts, installations, photo montage work, print folios, letterpress cards.

UDON Entertainment
Represented by Erik Ko, 4 additional authors
UDON Entertainment is a publisher of original art books, graphic novels, and manga. UDON’s best-known projects are those based on popular video game franchises including Street Fighter®, Okami®, Mega Man®, Darksiders®, Valkyria Chronicles, and more. The publisher’s ever-growing library also includes original graphic novels by a host of Canadian and International authors, English editions of several Japanese manga titles, and the Korean anthology art book series Apple.

Exhibiting Authors

Rupert Bottenberg
A devoted comic-book artist and enthusiast, Bottenberg has created strips for anthologies in the US, Canada and Europe, founded the Montreal Comic Jam multidisciplinary art events, served as comic-book correspondent on CBC Radio’s Brave New Wavesshow and overseen comic-related events for several Montreal festivals, including the Fantasia genre-film festival, with which he has worked since its inception in 1996. Bottenberg has also directed comic-book workshops for teenagers, including a week-long residency in Kangiqsualujjuaq, Nunavik. A former music editor at the Montreal Mirror newsweekly, Bottenberg has also written freelance for other outlets. Bottenberg is currently the co-director of the En Masse collaborative art initiative, and co-creator, with writer Claude Lalumière, of the cryptomythological graphic-lit project Lost Myths.

Jeffrey Ellis
Jeff is currently the President on the Cloudscape Comic Society Board of Directors and their chief cat herder.  He has contributed to all of Cloudscapes anthologies, He has produced over 100 pages of content for his webcomic ‘Teach English in Japan’. Chapter one of the series is available in print, with chapter two to be released soon.

Agnes Garbowska
Agnes Garbowska was born in Poland and came to Canada when she was four years old. Being an only child she escaped into a world of books, cartoons, and comics. Fueled by all the imaginary worlds her interest in art grew. 

She writes and illustrates a number of web comics titled Imagination Station, Waking Up Abbey, and You, Me, and Zombie all found on her website The first chapters of these have been collected in her self-published book MyMisiu Gazette Vol. 1. She also illustrates a web comic called Boo Bear and Flo part of Saturday Morning Webtoons with writer Jack Briglio . Other published work includes work for Marvel Comics on Girl Comics and Spider-Ham 25th Anniversary Special.

Love Love Hill (Collective) Wai Au, Kim Hoang, Julie Man
Love Love Hill is a Canadian collective of comic artists, founded and led by Wai Au in Vancouver, Kim Hoang in Montréal, and Julie Man in Toronto. Since its realization ten years ago, we have been independently self-publishing anthologies of short comics, art zines, and minis, all lovingly bound in handmade volumes. Thematically centered around the little whimsical charms in life, we draw and write stories based on elements that we like to read, and we hope you will like them too.
Our latest project is “”Knight Life””, a varied collection of medieval-themed tales that range from serious to light-hearted. In 84 pages of teal risograph-printed glory, we explore the individual worlds of each fantastical character as they struggle with foes, rivals, protegés, and their own honour.

ラヴ・ラヴ・ヒルはバンクーバーのWai Auが設立し率いる、モントリオールのKim Hoang、そしてトロントのJulie ManSinceが参加しているカナダのコミック作家の団体だ。
最新共同作は”Knight Life”で、中世をテーマにした物語のアンソロジーだ。内容はシリアスなものから軽妙なものまで。暗緑色がかった青色のリソグラフ印刷で刷られた84ページの本を開くと、敵、ライバル、子分、自分たちの名誉と奮闘する想像上のキャラクター達の世界に連れていかれる。

David Namisato
David Namisato is an illustrator in Toronto working on magazine illustrations, trading cards, and of course, comics.
David’s comics work has appeared in “”Kayak: Canada’s History Magazine for Kids””, “”Zombies vs Cheerleaders””, and “”Gutters”” as well as his own “”Life After the B.O.E.”” online comic, “”Life After the B.O.E. the Book”” graphic novel, and his monthly Japanese language comic “”マークと皆”” in Torja Magazine.”

Benjamin Rivers
Benjamin Rivers leads the design and development of websites, as well as educational and instructional games. He teaches at OCAD University and is an accomplished illustrator and graphic novelist. His most recent book, SNOW, was awarded a Xeric Foundation grant in 2011, and was nominated for a Gene Day Award in 2010.

Miguel Sternberg
A veteran of Toronto’s indie game & comics scene, Miguel is a former co-founder of Capybara Games and helps run The Hand Eye Society, an indie game arts and culture group. His pixel art has graced the back cover of Scott Pilgrim Gets it Together, the movie Crank, the web game Legends of Zork, as well as countless unplayable cellphone games based on major movie franchises. He recently organized the Comics vs Games art show as part of TIFFnexus and The Toronto Comic Arts Festival.

Maurice Vellekoop
Maurice Vellekoop was born in 1964 in suburban Toronto. His mother created bullet-proof hairdos for the local ladies in her salon in the family’s basement. His father was an avid art lover who blasted the neighbourhood with his opera records on Saturday afternoons. A true child of the TV age, Maurice grew up on a steady diet of supernatural sitcoms,variety shows, Japanese monster movies and Ross Hunter melodramas. Inspired by his sister Ingrid he became interested in commercial art from an early age, eventually attending the Ontario College of Art from 1982 to 1986. He joined Reactor Art and Design soon after graduating and has been illustrating for major magazines, book publishers and ad agencies ever since.
Editorial clients include The New Yorker, The New York Times, Vogue, Rolling Stone, Glamour, Wallpaper, Out, Entertainment Weekly, Mother Jones, Saturday Night, Cosmetics and Fashion. Advertising clients range from Spotco, LVMH, Abercrombie and Fitch, Smart Car and Pink Triangle Press to, most recently, Murale, a brand new chain of cosmetics Stores. Maurice’s book publishing clients include Running Press, Harper Collins and Universe/Rizzoli. His work has appeared in American Illustration and was included in “”Stylishly Drawn”” by Laird Borrelli, a book on contemporary fashion Illustration published by Harry N. Abrams.
Maurice is the author/illustrator of 4 books of his own work with Drawn and Quarterly and Green Candy Press. His work has been shown numerous times at the Reactor Gallery in Toronto, the Mayor gallery in London and in a traveling group show called “”New Pop”” that stopped at the Palazzo Fortuny in Venice.

彼の母親は自宅の地下に設けた美容院で地元の夫人達に斬新なヘアスタイルを提案し、父親は美術愛好家であり土曜の午後には近所中に響きわたる大音量でオベラのレコードをかけた。テレビの黄金期に育ったヴェレクープは連続ホームコメディー、バラエティー番組、日本の怪獣映画そしてロス•ハンターのメロドラマ等を見て成長した。姉のイングリッドの影響で、幼い時期からコマーシャル・アートに興味を持ち、1982〜86年までオンタリオ美術大学に通った。卒業後にReactor Art and Designのメンバーとなり、メジャーな雑誌、出版社、広告会社のイラストを手がけ続けている。
雑誌のクライアントは:The New Yorker, The New York Times, Vogue,Rolling Stone, Glamour, Wallpaper, Out, Entertainment Weekly, Mother Jones, Saturday Night, Cosmetics and Fashion.等。
広告のクライアントは:Spotco, LVMH, Abercrombie and Fitch, Smart Car, Pink Triangle Press, Murale等。
出版社のクライアントは:RunningPress, Harper Collins, Universe/Rizzoli等。
彼の作品はAmerican Illustration に掲載され、またHarry N. Abrams社より出版された現代ファッション・
イラストレーションの本、 “Stylishly Drawn” にも掲載された。
Drawn and Quarterly とGreen Candy Pressより4冊の作品集が出版されている。
展覧会はトロントのReactor Galleryで定期的に、あとはロンドンのMayor Gallery、ヴェニスのPalazzo Fortuny にも参加した巡回グループ展”New Pop”等がある。

See you in Tokyo!