Join us for a very special Library event with award-winning graphic novelist and filmmaker, James Spooner, in conversation at Berkeley’s iconic 924 Gilman Street (Alternative Music Foundation). He will discuss his 2022 graphic novel, The High Desert: Black. Punk. Nowhere., a formative coming-of-age graphic memoir. The High Desert depicts Spooner’s reckoning with identity, racism, clumsy teen love and belonging in an isolated California desert town while searching for salvation and community through punk. Register for your free spot here on Eventbrite <-----
Joining James Spooner in conversation is Justin Hall, award-winning cartoonist, scholar, and educator who is based in the Bay Area.
This author talk will conclude with a live amplified musical performance by special, punk music guests, Fatty Cakes and the Puff Pastries!
James will be bringing copies of The High Desert: Black. Punk. Nowhere., for sale and signing at this event.
NOTE: this event is happening at the Alternative Music Foundation (924 Gilman), which is located at 924 Gilman St., Berkeley, California 94710. A limited number of walk-in's may be seated the day of the event.
Register for your free spot here on Eventbrite <-----
James Spooner is an award-winning graphic novelist, tattoo artist, illustrator, and filmmaker. He directed the seminal documentary Afro-Punk which premiered at national and international film festivals, including Toronto International and The American Black Film Festival. James also co-founded the Afropunk Festival, which currently boasts audiences in the hundreds of thousands around the world. James’ debut graphic novel, The High Desert was named in Publisher’s Weekly best of 2022 and is available now. His work has been recounted in various publications, including NPR, the Los Angeles Times, Vice, The Village Voice, The New Yorker, MTV, NBC News and Variety, and he was a recipient of the ReNew Media Rockefeller Grant.
He is an ongoing guest curator for the Broad Museum in Los Angeles and previously programmed for the Brooklyn Academy of Music. James is also a contributor to RazorCake Magazine, and he continues to screen Afro- Punk at colleges around the country, giving talks on punk and Black identity. He is currently co-editing an anthology from Soft Skull Press entitled, Black Punk Now. James lives in LA with his partner, Lisa, and their dog, Rumi, a chocolate labradoodle.
Photo credit of James Spooner: Magda Wosinska
Justin Hall is a cartoonist, scholar, and educator. He is the creator or co-creator of True Travel Tales, Hard to Swallow, and Theater of Terror: Revenge of the Queers, and has work in publications such as the Houghton Mifflin Best American Comics, Best Erotic Comics, and the SF Weekly. He edited the Lambda-Award-winning and Eisner-nominated collection No Straight Lines: Four Decades of Queer Comics and was Producer of the feature-length documentary of the same name. Hall is the Chair of the MFA in Comics program at California College of the Arts, the first Fulbright Scholar of comics, has written about comics for various academic publications, and has curated international exhibitions of comics art. He is now at work on a graphic novel that weaves memoir with queer San Francisco history for Abrams Books. @justinhallcomics
Fatty Cakes and the Puff Pastries is a band of women and non-binary people from Fresno, CA. Previously known for their pop punk anthems of uniting community and fighting the oppressive powers that be, FC&PP have grown their sound to include indie rock songs that archive the human experience of love, loss and life.
Photo credit of Fatty Cakes and the Puff Pastries: Liz Cabrera