Room 2
11:00 - 12:45
Access to Arts & Culture
Comics for All: Visual storytelling as resistance

Short thesis

Calling artists, comics makers and comics enthusiasts - all experience levels! In this workshop participants will get to know one-another and work collectively to create several comic strips. Facilitated by Maamoul Press, a Detroit-based collective working in comics, printmaking and book arts, we will first engage in a group discussion about problems in the comics industry today and the power of comics as a tool for radical for-us-by-us storytelling, before diving into a fast-paced art workshop.


This session is designed as a dual workshop and meetup. The session allows local and visiting artists, particularly those working in comics, to get to know one-another both on a personal level and as artists, through a facilitated discussion and participatory art workshop.


  1. To provide a space for critical reflection on and discussion about problems that artists face in the comics industry, especially artists of color and queer artists. These problems include racism, tokenism, lack of diversity in stories, characters, and creators, and lack of funding, to name a few.

  2. To think together about how we may address these problems in our own work, and ways that Maamoul Press in particular can do our part to combat these issues.

  3. To provide space for networking between artists facing similar issues in their work. Our hope is that these relationships may continue after the conference itself has ended, giving way to new collaborations and creative partnerships.

The first part of the session will include a facilitated discussion during which both creators and readers of comics will have an opportunity to discuss the issues they perceive in the comics industry today. 

The second part of the session will be a fast-paced art making workshop, during which time participants will create “exquisite corpse” style comic stories, which we will review together and discuss at the end. Everyone in the space will get to contribute to multiple comic strips, and everyone will get to take home one comic strip that a number of artists contributed to.