We are thrilled to announce that Still Alive by Safdar Ahmed will be published by Fantagraphics in their Underground imprint in late 2022.
Fantagraphics have been waving the flag for ‘serious comics’ for half a century. The title of the history of their first forty years, Comics As Art: We Told You So, provides a seven-word meme-grab of their mission. In terms of English-language comics publishers driving the medium and championing a range of voices and subject matters, Fantagraphics has had the greatest impact on broadening the idea of what is considered ‘comics’ in the 21st century. Twelve Panels Press is honoured to be associated with such a trailblazing, fearless publisher and this is a massive boost to our own project: working with comic-book makers to edit, design and publish graphic novels, and delivering their books to literate and diverse audiences.
While we await the easing of restrictions so we can plan future events, have a look at these videos of Safdar’s reading and the fabulous Q&A with Maria Tumarkinfrom our Melbourne launch in May. You can also listen to this May 27 interview by Richard Watts on his radio show ‘Smart Arts’ on RRR (listen from the 1.04 to 1.22 marks – a really good 18 minute interview, highly recommended)
REVIEWS AND MEDIA
‘An arrestingly powerful use of the graphic novel … Sensitive, heart-breaking, stippled with dark humour, it’s hard to imagine a more potent indictment of Australia’s immigration detention, nor a clearer call to change it.’– Cameron Woodhead, the Age and Sydney Morning Herald
‘I want you to know how profound an experience this graphic novel offers its readers. Read it, feel it as deeply as the content demands – and then share it with anyone who still needs convincing that immigration detention must end.’ Ele Jenkins, Readings Carlton
‘I think if there is a line running through all of my stuff it would be the idea of art as a type of introspective self-exploration, but mobilised in a strategic way to hopefully address some aspect of the human condition or a pressing moral or social concern. When it comes to zine-making and metal, both have that capability. I’m inspired by the DIY approach—the sense that we make our own culture—which is ingrained in zines and underground metal music. For me, both belong in a political context that is pluralistic and inherently anti-authoritarian, and are well tailored to expressing the idiosyncratic quirks of a personal or subjective voice.’ Safdar Ahmed