This weekend, it's the Brooklyn Comics and Graphics Festival

One of the more interesting, art-focused and idiosyncratic comic conventions around, the Brooklyn Comics and Graphics Festival, will take place this weekend.

The bulk of  festival will be held from noon to 7 p.m. Saturday at Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church, located  in the Williamsburg section of Brooklyn, N.Y. The show has expanded considerably, however, to include a number of other events, including gallery shows and a film festival.

• This year's featured guests line-up is a murderer's row of A-list cartoonists, including Chris Ware, Charles BurnsRoz Chast, Adrian Tomine and Richard McGuire. The organizers -- Bill Kartalopolous, Dan Nadel and Gabriel Fowler -- have also got a considerable European contingent coming from overseas, including Blexbolex, Olivier Schrauwen and Anouk Ricard.

• Exhibitors at this year's show include Fantagraphics, Drawn and Quarterly, Koyama Press, Secret Acres, Uncivilized Books, AdHouse, Picturebox, Nobrow, Conundrum Press and many, many more. Of special note is the release of Barrel of Monkeys by Florent Ruppert and Jerome Mulot, the debut book in Kartalopolous' new Rebus Books publishing venture. I read a .pdf of this the other day and it's really, really good and I strongly recommend getting a copy if you go to the show (Ruppert will be one of the festival's guests).

• Programming will be held at The Knitting Factory on 361 Metropolitan Ave in Brooklyn. There will be featured Q&As with the festival's special guests, of course, but also discussions on sexuality in comics, architecture and collage art.

 A film festival will be held tonight, Saturday and Sunday at the Spectacle Theater. Highlights include a tribute to Moebius, and the 1973 French animated sci-fi film Fantastic Planet.

• Gallery shows will be held throughout the weekend at various nearby locales. For example: A show featuring work by Lille Carre will be held at Desert Island, one highlighting the work of underground artist Michael McMillan will be at Tomato House, and an exhibition of work by the B.u.L.b. comix group will be at the Beginnings Gallery.

But that's not all! There will also be performances and readings, including a new staged production of Feiffer's People at The Brick. In short, this is a much more expanded and diverse show than in previous years. The emphasis here is on Festival, and my hope is if you do get a chance to go to the show you will take advantage of its many offerings beyond simply buying some comics (although you should definitely do that too).

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