Happenings: Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) May 8-9, 2010

This weekend sees the return of the now annual TORONTO COMIC ARTS FESTIVAL:

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival

Saturday May 8th, 9am-5pm   &    Sunday May 9th, 11am-5pm

@ Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge St., Toronto, Canada, 416-533-9168

Admission to TCAF is Free.

Presented by: The Toronto Public Library, The Beguiling, Eye Weekly, Broken Pencil

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival exists to promote the breadth and diversity of comics, and what is considered comics, as legitimate medium of literary and artistic worth. The festival seeks to promote the creators of these works in their broad and diverse voices, for the betterment of the medium of comics and to reach as wide an audience as possible for them.

The first Toronto Comic Arts Festival (“TCAF”) was held on the weekend of March 29th 2003. It was the natural progression of years of disparate book signings, author appearances and miscellaneous events put together by a group of volunteers interested in promoting the literary and artistic merits of comic books and graphic novels.

Attendance and excitement grew during subsequent events, held every two years. TCAF 2005 was held the weekend of May 28-29 in large tents set up on the grounds of Honest Ed’s department store. TCAF 2007 moved back indoors to the Victoria College building on the University of Toronto over the August 18-19 weekend. TCAF 2009 was the biggest TCAF to date, taking place in partnership with Toronto Public Library in their massive flagship location, Toronto Reference Library  on the weekend of May 9th and 10th, engaging over 300 exhibitors consisting of authors, artists, publishers, from 6 different countries including France, Germany, Japan, and England.

While most of shows of this nature are pop-culture events, the organizers wanted to do something that dealt more specifically with the art form of comics itself, with an emphasis on genre appreciation and interaction between creators and their community.

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Editor’s note: Yes, the above information is taken directly from the TCAF website, however I’ve edited it slightly to exclude attendance figures and some potshots at other more traditional comics events for the sake of building this one up.

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Anyway, hundreds of guests, including some great Canadian guests that have never been here before, including creators from Quebec that rarely make appearances at English festivals — there is a huge focus on webcomics and kids comics. Highly recommended.