Berkeley Comic Arts Festival at the Berkeley Public Library

April 25, 2013

Contact: Jack Baur
Teen Services Librarian


The Berkeley Comic Arts Festival is a series of events held at the Berkeley Public Library to celebrate comic books and graphic novels, and their creators.  The aim of these events is to explore the breadth of stories told through the comics form, and to promote comics and graphic novels as diverse, high-quality reading material for readers of all ages.  The events that the library will be hosting will include author visits, workshops, and educational events   All of these events are free and open to all-ages, and will be held at the Central Library unless otherwise noted.  More events to be announced.

Free Comic Book Day Celebration with Hope Larson May 4th, 1:00 to 4:00 Celebrate Free Comic Book Day at the Berkeley Public Library with Eisner Award winner, Hope Larson.  Hope is an illustrator and cartoonist whose most recent work, a graphic novel adaption Madeline L'Engle's beloved classic A Wrinkle in Time, is sure to delight readers age eight to adult.  Come join us as we sit down with the artist to discuss working in the comic industry, her favorite books, and what projects she has on the horizon.  

Superfriends!  featuring Bay Area Cartoonists Derek Kirk Kim, Jason Shiga, Lark Pien, and Thien Pham May 18th, 2:00 to 3:30 After forging a friendship through their love of comics at a small Oakland Art Night, these four cartoonists made the leap from hand-stapled zines to wide acclaim in the world of graphic novels.  Hear them reminisce about their shared roots, see some of their early creations, and learn what the future holds for these exciting local stars!  This event is a perfect opportunity for parents, children, and adults to make some interactive comics!  

Inside the Cartoon Art Museum May 21st, 6:00 to 7:30 The Cartoon Art Museum is a hidden gem in the San Francisco museum scene, and is the only museum in the Western United States dedicated to the preservation and exhibition of all forms of cartoon art!  Get an introduction to the museum from curator Andrew Farago, who will share some of the museum’s treasures and talk about their upcoming exhibitions!  

The History of Manga with Shaenon Garrity May 30th, 4:00 to 5:00 Come learn the secret history of manga, the style of Japanese comics that have swept America!  Shaenon Garrity -- creator of the webcomic Narbonic and an editor for the venerable manga publisher Viz -- takes us back to the early days of manga and traces its evolution parallel to that of comics in America.  

Reading with Pictures: Comics and Literacy June 4th, 6:00 to 7:30 Central Library, Third Floor Meeting Room What happens in a child’s mind when they read a comic?  Does reading comics prepare children for other forms of literacy?  How is the comics medium similar to the increasingly visual information landscape of the Internet?  Josh Elder, Executive Director of the education nonprofit Reading With Pictures, offers parents insight into how comics can make their kids better readers and how to make comics a part of a healthy reading diet!  

Jenni Holm June 18th, 10:30 to 11:30 At the Claremont Branch, 2940 Benvenue at Ashby Kids of all ages love Babymouse, the adorable and irrepressible star of the hit comics series.  Writer Jenni Holm will visit the Claremont Branch to talk about what it’s like to make comics with her brother, the wild success of Babymouse, what’s coming next for her beloved characters, and cupcakes!  She’ll also be talking to parents about the importance of reading and the role that comics can play in children’s literacy development.  This will be a fun event for the whole family.  Books will be available for purchase, courtesy of Mrs. Dalloway’s.  

Darick Robertson June 20th, 6:30 to 8:00 At the South Branch, 1901 Russell St at MLK Ave Best known for his gritty art on satirical masterpieces Transmetropolitan and The Boys, as well as celebrated runs on Wolverine and Nightcrawler, the ever-entertaining artist Darick Robertson joins us at the South Branch for a look at the darker corners of the comic book world.  Knowing Robertson’s work, the conversation may get salty, so parental guidance is suggested!  

Matt Kindt August 10th, 3:00 to 4:00 Mind control, superspies, government conspiracies, psychic powers... welcome to the world of Matt Kindt!  With his pulpy style and the twisty puzzles in his work, Kindt is making waves with creator-owned books like MIND MGMT and Superspy, and on hit titles like Frankenstein: Agent of SHADE and Wolverine and the X-Men!  Get a firsthand tour through some of comics most unique and intriguing worlds at this can’t miss author event!  

Zine Workshop with Ed Luce! Dates to be determined, but happening in July Come get a three-week crash course in making, marketing, and selling your own comics from underground comics star Ed Luce, creator of Wuvable Oaf!  

Sponsored by the Friends of the Library ( and the Library Services and Technology Act.  For more information, call 510-981-6287 or connect

Berkeley’s Central Library is open Monday 12 noon until 8 p.m., Tuesday 10 a.m. until 8 p.m., Wednesday through Saturday, 10 a.m. until 6 p.m., and Sunday afternoons from 1 p.m. till 5 p.m. For more info please call 510-981-6100 or visit

Wheelchair accessible. To request a sign language interpreter or other accommodations for this event, please call (510) 981-6195 (voice) or (510) 548-1240 (TTY); at least three working days will help ensure availability. Please refrain from wearing scented products to public programs.

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