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Gapers Block published from April 22, 2003 to Jan. 1, 2016. The site will remain up in archive form. Please visit Third Coast Review, a new site by several GB alumni.
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Thursday, June 20

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Events Tue May 27 2014

Before Dessert: The Week Leading Up to CAKE


If you haven't yet befriended Charles Cake, you should. Not only is Charles a top-notch Facebook friend and all around stand up guy, but he also has the full scoop on his not-to-be-missed namesake, CAKE: the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo.

10373729_10203688071384407_7886899377359811501_n.jpgChicago has long been a hub of underground comics, and this week CAKE is rolling out a schedule of events -- all of which are free and open to the public -- that will do that history proud. The expo's third year kicks off with a live comic reading sponsored by Minneapolis-based comics publisher 2D Cloud. These works, imagineered by Edie Fake, Anna Bongiovanni, Sam Alden, Andy Burkholder, Mark Connery, Sarah Ferrick, John Holden, Scott Longo and Annie Mok -- liberally linked here for your viewing pleasure -- are intricate, expressive and beautiful. Head over to Galerie F (2381 N. Milwaukee Ave.) this Thursday at 7 pm to hear these stories told in the authors' own voices.

10306721_876359759047975_7327892387866606507_n.jpgAfter the 2D reading, gear up for whole other slew of CAKE-sponsored goodness this Friday. Artist Tony Millionaire will be doing a signing at Graham Cracker Comics (77 E. Madison Ave.) from 5 - 7 pm. According to advertising, he'll sign anything, so get creative. Quimby's Bookstore (1854 W. North Ave.) will host three of CAKE's exhibitors: Elisha Lim, MariNaomi, and Mike Dawson. These critically acclaimed authors and illustrators will read from selections of their latest work. In case that isn't enough hooplah for one evening, the third option for your Friday is an Artist's Panel at DePaul's School of Cinema (14 E. Jackson St.), featuring the story artists of beloved late-night cartoon nonsense, Adventure Time: Jesse Moynihan, Michael DeForge and, making a second appearance, Sam Alden. The panel, which begins at 6 pm, will discuss how Adventure Time's collaboration with alternative comic artists has breathed new life into the form and content of animated narrative.

Wrap up your night with the Lumpen Comics Release Party at the Co-prosperity Sphere in Bridgeport (3219 S. Morgan St.), running from 8 pm to "midnightish." The second all-comics issue of the magazine will be available at the CAKE expo the following day.

Screen shot 2014-05-27 at 11.20.22 PM.pngWhich brings us to the main event: CAKE. This Saturday, May 31st through Sunday, June 1st, over 200 exhibitors will set up shop in The Center on Halsted (3656 N. Halsted St.) and form a community; a discussion space; a pulsing creative hub for those lovers of underground comics. Attend a panel, purchase an art print, peruse the latest and greatest that comics both local and imported have to offer. Take one look at the lineup of exhibitors and special guests and start drooling with anticipation.

Once you've soaked in all those comics? Time to make your own. Just when you thought that was it, that was all, there couldn't possibly be more, the week following CAKE has a little extra in store. From June 2nd through the 6th, CHI PRC (858 N. Ashland Ave.) hosts "Making Comics out of Life," a workshop with cartoonist John Porcellino, which will culminate in a personal zine.

Yummm, CAKE. We can hardly wait.

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