Blog Categories
  • Visit our Indiegogo campaign!

  • Support the IAF!

    The Interstitial Arts Foundation needs your support. Click here to donate and become a Friend of the IAF!

  • @InterstitialArt

  • About the IAF

    The Interstitial Arts Foundation is a not-for-profit organization dedicated to the study, support, and promotion of interstitial art: literature, music, visual and performance art found in between categories and genres – art that crosses borders. Find out more!

  • Latest IAF News

    IAF INTERFICTIONS ONLINE INDIEGOGO CAMPAIGN ends above target goal

    Thanks to 277 generous backers for our Interfictions Indiegogo Campaign, we raised $10,318 by the time our campaign ended at midnight, July 14th, 2014.  When we launched on June 3rd, we were staggered to find donations doubling almost daily, until after about 3 weeks we had reached our original target goal of $8,500, and were able to move on to our Stretch Goal of $10,000.

    Which means we not only get to publish Interfictions Online for another year, but we can pay our contributors at higher rates now, rates more in line with the effort and talent that innovation requires. Thank you, each and every one of the 277 generous donors who stepped forward to say that interstitial art is valued and valuable. The number of people is as important as the number of dollars raised. We are awed by your generosity.
    Now [...]

    INTERFICTIONS issue #3 is up online!

    The editors of Interfictions Online are happy to announce the birth of the journal’s latest issue, on May 22, 2014!

    The Spring 2014 issue’s non-fiction offerings include Mark Craddock’s poignant collage in Aerial Acrobatics and Gender Reassignment Surgery – A How-To Guide, while Inda Lauryn’s Parallels and Transitions splices analysis of contemporary female vocalists into a graduate school memoir. Isabel Yap’s Life Is Not a Shoujo Manga speaks for itself. And in an interview with Jeff VanderMeer and Jeremy Zerfoss, the two creators discuss their illustrated guide to writing, Wonderbook.

    The fiction offerings remix tropes from ghosts to automata, with new work by Richard Butner, Su-Yee Lin, Kat Howard, Tade Thompson and S. Craig Renfroe Jr.

    Several of the poems in this issue reimagine older narratives: Sridala Swami’s AI Winter draws on the Mahabharata, Sonya Taaffe’s Double Business on Hamlet, and Mary Alexandra Agner’s Hypothesis Between Your Ribs on the brief life of Charles Darwin’s daughter.

    [...]

  • Featured IAF News

  • Events

    Interstitial Indy

    Sunday, Nov. 25

    Interstitial Indy

    7-11PM
    Indiana Writers’ Center
    812 E 67th Street
    Indianapolis, IN
    (off College Ave. just behind The Indianapolis Art Center in the Cultural Complex Building)

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

  • Archives

  • Categories

  • Meta

  • Comic Con and Interstitiality
    by InterstitialArts | October 19th, 2010 |

    I was describing my somewhat overwhelming introduction to the chaos of New York Comic Con to a friend last week, and her comment was, “It sounds like what you found there more than anything is a sense of community.” And that felt right to me, and led me to ask myself, but what is that community, exactly? For I am not, first and foremost, a comics person, although comics were my first love; there was a time when waiting for the next issue of Batman or Superman was pure agony, and I couldn’t wait to fork over the coins that would make their stories mine.

    Of course, Comic Con isn’t just about comics; it’s about fantasy, science fiction, manga, anime, films, gaming, digital media, music: it’s a kingdom, existing for just three days, of alternative realities, that may all be tied to one another, but are insulated by the concrete walls of the Javits Center from what many inside would describe as the “mundane” world. In the mundane world, the person next to you is unlikely to sport bright pink hair and a top hat or carry the very latest in vorpal blades. They probably won’t even know what manga is, or they might, like the people in my apartment house’s elevator when I told them I was going to Comic Con, start saying things like, “Are you taking a custard-pie-in-the-face workshop?”

    And this led me to think about where interstitiality might lie within that vast and temporary kingdom, which draws 100,000 people to spend a few days outside their normal life.

    We have ongoing debates at the Interstitial Arts Foundation over what exactly makes art interstitial. And we wonder if our roots in and strong identification with the world of science fiction and fantasy sometimes obscure our point: that artists should be free to practice their art between the lines drawn increasingly deeper every day by genre and niche forms. To flourish, artists need to be able to walk freely through the borderlands, conjuring their illusions from whatever source they choose. All genres can be restrictive, whether your form is romance or jazz or web comics.

    Now Comic Con is, above all, a celebration of genre; from the crowds of teenagers displaying their talents at cosplay to the lines of devotees of all ages willing to wait hours for a signature from Stan Lee to the crowds clamoring to be let into an overcrowded Jim Butcher panel or the much awaited screening of Gundam Unicorn. But it occurred to me that without countries sporting clearly defined borders to start with, one would have a difficult time crossing them. And, here, laid out before us, on special, for three days only, are a fantastic assortment of genres to be adapting, ignoring, drawing from, parodying, excluding–whatever takes your fancy. And here, also, are the devotees of those genres–and what’s even more fascinating, is that most of them (and granted, this is purely observation) don’t stick to just one genre. People who were there to play Magic the Gathering could also be found in the Artists Alley of the Anime wing; comic book collectors were not immune to the lures of the free books being pressed into their hands; and writers in every genre flocked to panels to learn about taking their work to Hollywood or podcasting their seminal works. It was not a community of comics or film or animation or books; it was a community of people who loved stories that were not bound by the day-to-day rules of the agreed-upon reality of the world outside. For three days, that agreement was suspended, and superheroes flew, spaceships landed, aliens were shot down through brilliant marksmanship, wizard detectives followed their clues, princesses with extremely large eyes were rescued (or did the rescuing), tournaments were held, civilizations rose and fell, and hair came in blue, pink, or purple, but never boring brown.

    Although we may not want to be bound forever to the amazing genre kingdoms on display, it’s exciting to see the people who love them come together with a common purpose, and to observe the cross-fertilization going on across those various artist alleys and among the fans who patronize them. It’s also a place to see the beginnings of what both art and entertainment might look like some day, as stories are created and recreated through different technologies, pushing outward to create new forms. Interstitial artists may not want to be restricted by the genres they read as they were going up–they may have yearnings for a wider stage and a bigger palette–but roots in this and other genre communities are perhaps something of which we ought to be proud. Everybody has to be from somewhere, and, except for the extreme lack of edible cuisine at the Javits Center, this is an awfully good place to be from.

    finish line

    Post a Comment