This year’s SPX already has a top notch guest list, but here’s an added bonus: five of the most exciting Spanish indie cartoonists, Santiago García, Ana Galvañ, David Rubín, Javier Olivares and José Domingo, will be appearing, thanks to funding and assistance from SPAIN arts & culture. All five appear in Spanish Fever-Stories By The New Spanish Cartoonists, an anthology of 28 contemporary comics by 30 Spanish authors published by Fantagraphics and debuting at SPX.
Spanish indie comics are finding a larger and larger voice in the country’s native comics tradition. This new anthology is a great introduction to this generation of cartoonists. David Rubín is probably the best known here in the US thanks to Hero and his work on Aurora West, but as I was finding art samples for all of them, the first thing that came to mind was “Holy cow!”
Short version: bring a lot of cash cuz you’re gonna spend a lot of money at this year’s SPX.
Santiago García has been a comic’s creator and essayist for more than twenty years. He was a founding member of U and Volumen, magazines specializing in comic reviews and news, for which he served as editor. He has written about comics for the cultural supplement of ABC and is the author of La novela gráfica (2010), which has been translated into English for the University Press of Mississippi as On the Graphic Novel (2015). In 2011 he received the outreach prize at the Salón del Cómic de Barcelona. In the last few years, he published the graphic novels Beowulf (2013) with David Rubín, Fútbol [Soccer] (2014) with Pablo Ríos, and Las meninas [The Maids of Honor] (2014) with Javier Olivares, The Maids of Honor won the National Prize in 2015 and will be published by Fantagraphics in 2017.
Ana Galvañ was born in Murcia, Spain. After her time in the Faculty of Fine Arts in Valencia, she moved to Madrid, where she worked as art director. She eventually left advertising to pursue comics and illustration full time. Her work has appeared in publications such as Mortland, Nobrow, Off Life, Clift, Ferocious Quarterly, Autsaider comics, Skunk Art Mag, and Tik Tok. Galvañ published Trabajo de clase in 2014, Más allá del Arcoiris in 2015 and Luz Verdadera in 2016.
David Rubín was born in Orense in 1977. He is a comics and animation illustrator, who codirected the full-length animated film El espíritu del bosque [The Spirit of the Forest] (2008). His many graphic novels include La tetería del oso malayo [The Tea Room of the Sun Bear] (2006) and Cuaderno de tormentas [Notebook of Storms] (2008). His graphic novel El Héroe [The Hero] (2011–2012), retells the myth of Hercules from the perspective of superheroes, which was translated into English in 2015 and published by Dark Horse. He adapted Beowulf with a script by Santiago García, soon to be published in the United States. His collaborations with American creators, include The Rise of Aurora West with scripts by Paul Pope and J. T. Petty, and The Fiction (2015) written by Curt Pires.
Javier Olivares was born in Madrid in 1964. An illustrator and cartoonist, he started the journal Madriz in the ’80s, and since then has contributed work to numerous magazines and newspapers, as well as illustrating books for both children and adults. His most recent graphic novel Las meninas (2014), which was translated into French and won the National Comic Award. The comic Finland, which is included in Spanish Fever – Stories from the New Spanish Cartoonists was adapted from an original story by Argentine author Hernán Casciari.
José Domingo was born in Zaragoza in 1982. An illustrator, cartoonist, and animator, Domingo is part of the Polaqia Collective. His first long comic was Cuimhne: El fuego distante [Cuimhne: The Distant Fire] (2008), with a script by Kike Benlloch. With Aventuras de un oficinista japonés [Adventures of a Japanese Businessman] (2011) he won the Salón del Cómic de Barcelona prize and the English edition from Nobrow was nominated for an Eisner Award. His latest works are Conspiraciones (2013), and Pablo and Jane and the Hot Air Contraption (2015).
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.