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Exhibitions

The success of the comic at the CCCB

Obra de Bàrbara Alca | © CCCB, Aleix Plademunt, 2022
The success of the comic at the CCCB

Until June 18, the CCCB exhibits the Graphic Constellation exhibition. Young avant-garde comic authors , where the work of nine creators who share a generation, critical spirit and sense of humor is explored. They are Bárbara Alca, Marta Cartu, Genie Espinosa, Ana Galvañ, Nadia Hafid, Conxita Herrero, María Medem, Miriampersand and Roberta Vázquez.

The exhibition starts from the will – and also the need – to verify a fact that has been consolidated in the comics universe in recent decades: the growing presence of women both as readers and creators. In fact, the curator of the exhibition, Montserrat Terrones, editor, points out that the incorporation of women into the world of vignettes is so powerful that currently "the creative baton is carried by women, and it was necessary to reflect this phenomenon".

On the other hand, Graphic Constellation is not an "usual" exhibition, in which elements are shown in a passive key. As we have already seen in other exhibition experiences at the Center for Contemporary Culture in Barcelona, Terrones has sought an exhibition format that goes much further: "How to exhibit comics has been one of the constant questions we have asked ourselves in this exhibition."

Despite being a purely visual language, the comic, in the same way as literature, poses a series of difficult challenges to tackle from a museographic point of view which the center of Barcelona has never been afraid of: let's remember examples like The Sebald Variations , curated by Jorge Carrión in 2015, or the more recent Mart. The red mirror , by Juan Insua in 2021. Although these two examples resolve their own debates in very different ways, in the case at hand it has been chosen to work on the exhibition as one more work, with full involvement of the authors exhibited, who have had their say and have provided various solutions to the permanent question of how the comic is exhibited.

Graphic constellation is divided into blocks that alternate playful displays , applications and installations closer to the diorama. In this way, we link a sense of humor, acid criticism and reflection in a journey that opens new windows into the respective universes of avant-garde comic authors. The exhibition set is riveted, on the one hand, with one of the initial blocks that gives context to the generation of the protagonist authors: the universe of the fanzine, the self-publishing festivals - such as the Graf -, the Fatbottom bookstore, the pes of social networks... In short, precariousness. On the other hand, a genealogy is also traced relating the present generation to other generations of authors often invisible in the history of comics.

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