Announcing themselves to the World today, a British arts collective called GHOSTS have revealed their plans to take over London this April, for a week-long underground comics exhibition. Featuring the work of seven writers and artists, this exhibition, called CULT, will be based on Orbital Comics and promises to fuse comics and music together for an occult-inspired comics showcase.
Starting on April 14th, the focal point of CULT will be a club night held at Resistance Gallery on the 19th in London, where DJ sets will be mixed with signings, book launches, guests and live music performances.
Comprised of creators Nich Angell, PM Buchan, Owen Michael Johnson, James Lawrence, Jon Lock, Mark Penman and Andrew Tunney, the GHOSTS collective are billing this as a turning point for British comics, which hope to impact on the rest of the scene and usher in a younger generation of writers and artists. In the announcement, Johnson says:
We’re thrilled to offer a different kind of event. One you don’t see a lot of anymore. Mischief in the grand tradition of underground comix. We’ve assembled what I believe to be a collection of progressive and visionary British artists, people that I’m proud to call friends. It’s going to be a riot.
You may recognise several of the names above – just from travelling the UK Comics scene, several of us at The Beat have been inadvertently writing about their work over the last year! Here’s the line-up:
Nich Angell is an artist and ever-present fixture on the UK convention circuit, currently known most for his graphic novel 7STRING. Having published two volumes of the series, volume three is currently underway.
PM Buchan is a writer and the c0-creator of the Blackout anthology, which published a second volume late last year. He is also the writer of La Belle Dame Sans Merci, which formed the inspiration for a free-to-download track by band For The Wolf.
Owen Michael Johnson is the writer of Raygun Roads, a series which our own Laura Sneddon described as “a sensory overload for dispirited hearts everywhere” last year on The Beat.
James Lawrence is the writer and artist behind Dangerine – a series about a young boy who becomes imbued with the superpowers and costume of a tangerine. I actually wrote about this myself, during my Thought Bubble roundup, as it was a brilliant comic which caught me completely by surprise.
Jon Lock is the creator of Afterlife, Inc, which crossed over with 7STRING for a big storyline called The Heavenly Chord. He is also the co-creator of The Six, a series which told the story of a world where the superheroes had all died, and the next generation found themselves having to live up to their reputation.
Mark Penman is the creator of Peabody and D’Gorath, a series which follows the eponymous supernatural antiquarians as they delve into mysteries relating to an otherworldly arms race. He is also the co-creator of The Waste.
Andrew Tunney is a British Comic Award nominated artist, writer, and colourist. The second part of the creative team for The Waste, his debut self-published work GIRL&BOY was nominated for Best Comic in the 2012 BCA awards.
So there you have the line-up of creators who will be making up GHOST, and running CULT in April. You can find out more about them all through the links above. Speaking about their plans, Buchan says:
Modern comics place too much emphasis on maintaining the status quo and propping up the establishment rather than encouraging innovation or true creativity. It doesn’t have to be this way. Break rules, make great art and have fun doing it. That’s what CULT is all about. Come along and discover new comics, drink cocktails, dance the night away and step outside your comfort zone
This does seem to be a massive endeavour, and it’s brilliant to see a number of creators I’ve been following suddenly all rise up as one. It’s all about making an entrance, is comics, and this is quite the impressive start. CULT begins at Orbital Comics on April 14th.