Monday, 23 November 2015

Humanoids present Naoki Urasawa, Taiyo Matsumoto, Boulet, Bastien Vivès, Frederik Peeters, and more, in international comics anthology, The Tipping Point


Humanoids have announced details of an upcoming comics anthology that brings together an indisputably excellent line-up of international comics talent. The Tipping Point will be published simultaneously in Japan, France, the UK, and the US, and features new work from Naoki Urasawa, Taiyo Matsumoto, Boulet, Bastien Vivès, Frederik Peeters, Paul Pope, Katsuya Terada, Eddie Campbell, John Cassaday, Bob Fingerman, Atsushi Kaneko, Keiichi Koike, and Emmanuel Lepage, with a cover by Enki Bilal. It's title is elicited from the thematic brief presented to each author: 'to explore the key moment when a clear-cut split occurs, a mutation, a personal revolt or a large-scale revolution that tips us from one world into another, from one life to an entirely new one: the tipping point.' The stories range from slice-of-life,science-fiction, adventure, amusing asides and fantastical fables, and promise to be 'humorous, moving, perplexing, horrifying, pensive, uplifting, and hopeful.'

The official press release has Humanoids' publisher, Fabrice Giger commenting, "Humanoids, since its very inception 40 years ago, has always had a leitmotif of building bridges between American comic books, Japanese manga, and European bande dessinée to help them inspire each other—or better yet, to cross-pollinate. The Tipping Point does just that, and features some of the medium's best creators working today. It's a very unique and special book that will land—like a shimmering UFO invasion—simultaneously in different languages around the planet, unifying global fans of the sequential art form."

Humanoids have quietly been working on digital distribution and translation (a number of their titles are listed on Amazon in Japanese language, digital formats) via the launch of their digital app earlier this year, and this book looks to continue that reaching out to audiences around the worlds major comics markets. Whilst I'm thrilled at the prospect of reading new, full-colour work from so many of my favourite artists -Naoki Uraswa! Taiyo Matsumoto! Bastien Vives!- and the prospect of this book leading people to discover work beyond what they might normally read, in this day and age, there is no excuse for putting together an anthology that purports to collate 'some of the medium's best creators working today' and for it to be an all-male list. Discount arguments of quotas and merit: there is no shortage of excellent female cartoonists *in the world* and to not include a single one in a project that aims to showcase and cross-pollinate (and one titled The Tipping Point!) reflects very poorly indeed.

The Tipping Point is due for publication in January 2016.

Naoki Urasawa

Taiyo Matsumoto

Paul Pope


Atsushi Kaneko

Bastien Vives

Bob Fingerman

Boulet

Eddie Campbell

Katsuya Terada

Emmanuel Lepage

Frederik Peeters

John Cassaday

Keiichi Koike

5 comments:

  1. Hi Zainab,

    It's not like we didn't ask any female creators to contribute, we asked loads! But they were either uninspired to do anything on the theme, too overloaded with work, unable to fit the work in with the deadlines we had, or simply didn't get back to us! So it wasn't for want of trying! Yes, we're not happy about it either! Perhaps female creators would like to get in touch from around the world and we can do an all international women anthology to counter-balance this?

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    1. These arent acceptable excuses anymore. Try harder, because the price comics pays when you don't is too high. Suggesting women get their own anthology next year is insulting and tone deaf. Try harder. Do better.

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  2. Not an excuse at all (and in fact we acknowledge the problem in the book's foreword, so very aware it's an issue) but what if you spend a year and don't get anywhere? It's a two-way street! We offer the work, if no-one takes up that offer what are you supposed to do? Deadlines in publishing are always the motivating factor and remain sacrosanct. We are more than happy to work with more female creators! Just get in touch with us! ALL work is reviewed on merit and there are absolutely no prejudices here! One of our bestsellers this year was The Swords of Glass from the all-female team of Sylvan Corgiat and Laura Zucchini. So, this is an open invite to all creators, male, female, whatever - If the story and/or the art is a high quality, we're interested!

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    1. What are the actual numbers, Tim? How many men did you ask, and how many women?

      Also, what was the thought process behind the cover image?

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    2. Hi Julia,

      Well, we only approached long-established, well-known ("big") names, and it was a rough split of 2/3 male, 1/3 female (which I think is fairly reflective of the industry as a whole, but obviously that's changing rather rapidly for the better). I'm sure there are at least another 10 women we could've contacted but didn't because we simply ran out of time. Obviously I'm not going to name names as that's unfair.

      I believe the brief for the cover was along the lines of: "The title is called The Tipping Point, what's your interpretation of that?" Pretty much the same as for the interiors. The idea was to let creators run free with the concept.

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