University takes part in Kendal’s comic book art festival this weekend

University takes part in Kendal’s comic book art festival this weekend

This weekend, the University of Cumbria’s Institute of the Arts will be showcasing its rising talent at an event that will see the whole of Kendal taken over by comic book artists from across the globe.

MA student Sian Owens has conceptualised a new family zone based in the Westmorland Centre for the Lakes International Comic Art Festival. I Love Moomins is a totally immersive and interactive experience which will run for the duration of the festival.

The experience takes visitors on a Day Trip Through Moomin Valley, where there will be a ‘green screen’ photo opportunity, and a chance to take part in some art and craft activities and go inside a Moomin Valley tent.

After visiting last year, Sian realised there was a gap in the market and spotted an opportunity to attract more families to the festival. She said:

“The exhibition is designed to enchant the festival’s youngest visitors with exhibits they can touch, interact and play with while recollecting the nostalgic quality of the Moomin brand for their parents.

“This is an event that creates a much needed space for families to bond over a shared experience. Ultimately, I hope the exhibit will have broad appeal to draw in families unfamiliar with the festival and act as a gateway to explore the rest of the events on offer.”

The experience is situated in Westmorland Shopping Centre and will open on Saturday 14 and Sunday 15 October. Students from Kendal College have produced the artwork for the exhibit in partnership with the university.

In addition, university staff will reside in the clock tower in Kendal over the weekend offering advice and portfolio critiques.

As an offshoot of the festival, the Vallum Gallery in the university’s Brampton Road campus, Carlisle is showing Graphic Lives, an exhibition featuring the art work of renowned Brighton-based comic-strip artist, Joe Decie and University of Cumbria Lecturer in Illustration and Graphic Design, Dwayne Bell.

Graphic Lives explores autobiographical subject matter of the two contributors expressed through the medium of graphic images and text.

The exhibition opens 12 October and runs until 10 November, 10-4pm and admission is free.