Tom Spurgeon's Web site of comics news, reviews, interviews and commentary

August 9, 2011

Graphic Arts Festival Confirms Crumb’s Withdrawal

imageNews slipped out yesterday that Robert Crumb and Aline Kominsky-Crumb had decided not to travel to Australia to headline Sydney's Graphic Arts Festival, due to an unpleasant newspaper article about the artist's work accusing him of sexual deviancy, which the couple believed might lead to unpleasantness and even the potential for violence on the ground. The Festival has since confirmed, meaning that initial efforts to get the cartoonist to attend were unsuccessful.

Crumb was going to be interviewed on stage and participate alongside Jim Woodring and Reg Mombassa in what is described in news stories as a workshop.

I heard from organizer Jordan Verzar in a brief e-mail this morning. He sent along some pertinent links, like a Facebook page devoted to urging the cartoonist to attend and the main Facebook page where the withdrawal is discussed. On a first glance, it seems as if fans are critical of the newspaper article rather than the cartooning couple. Verzar emphasized that the show -- which debuted last year -- would go on, and pointed to events like this one as an example of the festival's diverse offerings. Those who bought tickets to the planned Crumb event will be offered refunds and tickets to other events. I hope the show goes really well, and my sympathies extend to Verzar for something completely out of his control.

The festival takes place August 20-21.
posted 4:30 am PST | Permalink

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