Columbus Makes Art on Instagram: “Congrats to Katie Skelly @nurse_nurse on being the first recipient of the @cxcfestival award! The festival was amazing can’t wait for next year’s #atmakescbus”:




The Inaugural CXC (Crossroads Columbus) comics estival was held this weekend and based on the rhapsodies on social media it was a hit. You can see some of the rhapsodies here, here and here, but ESPECIALLY here in Derf’s photo report which made me green with envy—so envious that I stole some of his photos for this report. CXC seems to be second only to Angouleme in the hotly contested “photos of great cartoonists sitting around being relaxes” category. That is some achievement. The comics show part seemed to be well attended and everyone says that in five years this will be a major comics arts festival.

Katie Skelly won the first CXC Emerging Artist Award, as you can see above. The prize—which was kept a closely guarded secret prior to being awarded—came with a nice award AND a check for $7000 courtesy of Jeff Smith, as symbolized here.

WHOA. That is some prize! And look video of the award being presented courtesy of Frank Santoro:

2015 CXC Emerging Artist Award presentation from Frank Santoro on Vimeo.


I’m sure the panegyrics will soon be coming on Tumblr and beyond — feel free to send us yours. Here’s some more social read






  1. This was a great festival. All the artists seemed to be having a good time and the atmosphere was awesome. Jaime Hernandez was doing sketches and I got a great portrait of Maggie. Craig Thompson not only signed my books but did a small drawing in each one. The artists talks I attended were really interesting-particularly Hernandez’.
    If this was the soft launch it’s going to be incredible in a few years.

  2. I can’t add much more than what’s already been said. Despite a few logistics and coordination issues (it was an ambitious festival in its first year, after all) the whole thing was amazing. The Expo portion (i.e. artists alley) was heavily trafficked and the attendees were having a great time interacting with the cartoonists. I was lucky enough to share my table with Jeff Lemire, who had a steady stream of fans, and sold out of his books within the first few hours. The panel discussion on the final night between Jeff Smith, Art Spiegelman, and Francoise Mouly filled the CCAD auditorium to capacity, and folks had to head to an overflow section setup with a simulcast.

    Derf is right in his prediction, in a few short years, CXC is going to be massive.

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  5. This was a FANTASTIC show. The excitement of the attendees and the overall atmosphere were directed completely at comics, which was an unexpectedly refreshing feeling after tabling a long row of shows who devote probably 3/4 of their floor spaces to movie stars, nerdy trinkets and other merchants. The atmosphere that I can think of that’s most akin to this is at HeroesCon in Charlotte, but at CXC the love of independent comics was so much more focused and strong.

    The small and intimate location for the artist alley and artist “conversations” on Saturday was a great plus and probably a big part of the atmosphere – it completely eradicated all the corporate vibes that a convention center gives off (though I don’t know how the location will fare when attendance gets larger). Whatever form this show takes in future years, I am so glad I drove up from Kentucky to see this first year. I will not forget it!

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