Julie Delporte & Chihoi Launch: RECAP!

This tuesday, we were delighted to be host the launch of Chihoi and Julie Delporte's books! Chihoi is a Hong Kong artist whose books have been published in Chinese, Italian and French and he travelled here to celebrate the lauch of The Library, the first English-language edition of his work, published by Conundrum Press.

Julie Delporte is a Montreal cartoonist and the author of the children's book Je suis un raton laveur and  several books published by Colosse. She was here to launch Journal, published by Koyama Press and also her first work in English.

Chihoi started off the night by showing us some of the Hong Kong comics that were popular when he was young: they were very violent, sometimes pornographic, and often associated with gangster culture, though the authors often sold millions of copies. By Chihoi's teen years, though, this style had diminished in popularity.

Chihoi also related a moving account of the relationships he formed with other artists in his youth, including a friend who passed away at an early age.

The next part of Chihoi's story was about his struggle as an aspiring comics artist -- work was hard to come by, and like many others, he had to support himself with part-time retail jobs and commercial illustration, including a gig writing children's comics, from which he says he learned a lot.
An indie comics scene did develop in Hong Kong, however, especially around the magazine Cockroach.

Finally, Chihoi took us through some scenes from his haunting, surreal new book, The Library. During the question period, he admitted that he may have a fixation on staircases.

Next, Julie Delporte took to the stage greeted by the cheers of a crowd of local friends and fans and gave us a very personal and intimate tour of her autobiographical comics.

Journal chronicles a difficult breakup, and the artist’s residency at The Center for Cartoon Studies in White River Junction, Vermont. Revisting the events of her life was an emotional experience for her as well as for the audience, who were vocal in their support. The connection between Julie and her friends and fans was a warm and moving thing to witness. Love in the room!

Come on in and get your copy!

We have plenty of Chihoi`s The Library as well, many of them signed!
We had a great crowd!
And the signing table was mobbed!

Thanks again to everyone who came out! We had a great turnout, but despite the crowd, it was one of the more personal and intimate gatherings we`ve had in a long time. You can also look forward to a new book by Julie Delporte that will be published by Drawn & Quarterly next year! Julie is also the newest addition to our staff at 211, so come on in and say hi. If you ask nicely, she might autograph her book for you!

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