Print is dead, or so they say. Everything is supposedly moving online, or to Kindle, or otherwise away from a physical form. As usual, the trend-piece writers are missing the whole story. Any cultural shift creates resistance, and the paper revolution, led by independent comics, small-press publishers, and printmakers, has been on the march in recent years. Autoptic, a one-day international celebration of comics, zines, prints, art, and independent music, brings it all to Aria this Sunday. Organizer Zak Sally calls it "the biggest literary comics-related event Minneapolis has ever seen — if not the Midwest." The juried exhibition will feature more than 100 artists, small presses, and independent record labels from around the world. The headlining guest is Jaime Hernandez, creator of the groundbreaking series Love and Rockets, who was recently the subject of an MCAD exhibition highlighting his influential punk-Archie style and groundbreaking storytelling. (Hernandez will also be participating in a Q&A during MCAD's closing reception from 6 to 9 p.m. Friday, August 16.) Other artists include Lilli Carré, a filmmaker and cartoonist whose whimsical yet subtle work has been featured in The New Yorker, and local comic-scene star Tom Kaczynski of Uncivilized Books. Many comics and zines will make their world premiere at the expo, including Georgia Webber's Dumb #3, the latest installment in her series dealing with the loss of her voice to a vocal injury, and Noah Van Sciver's Saint Cole, exploring one man's flight from responsibility toward alcohol and sexual fantasy. If you'd rather feed your ears than your eyes, the independent labels on hand include Minneapolis's hip-hop collective Doomtree. In addition to the main festival on Sunday, there will associated events throughout the city during the week, including an experimental animation screening at the Open Eye Figure Theatre at 7 p.m. Saturday. If you're into anything that falls under the definition of autoptic, an adjective meaning "seen with one's own eyes," you'll find something worth seeing here. For more info, visit autoptic.org.
Sun., Aug. 18, 11 a.m.-7 p.m., 2013