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Chicago Alternative Comics Expo

Hollywood’s spandexed comic-book characters take a back seat during CAKE.

 (Artwork: Corinne Mucha)
Artwork: Corinne Mucha

Corinne Mucha
Known for
Flip to the back page of a recent Chicago Magazine and you�ll probably see Mucha�s comics, which playfully satirize Chicago with plots like using the �Bean� as a Chicago River flotation device and naming concepts that Grant Achatz should never try at Next.
Notable work
My Alaskan Summer, an autobiographical comic, won a Xeric award�a grant given to self-publishers to help fund their work.
Favorite superpower
�I wish I could get my laundry done just by staring at it,� Mucha says. �Which I guess would involve laser-soap vision or something.�
Mucha debuts and sells It Doesn�t Exist, which she describes as �a collection of stories about the imaginary or extinct, including one about a unicorn and a dodo bird who throw lavish dinner parties.�

 (Artwork: Jeffrey Brown)
Artwork: Jeffrey Brown

Jeffrey Brown
Known for
A Michigan transplant who now teaches a comics class at the School of the Art Institute, Brown is best known for his whimsical and bittersweet autobiographical comics as well as books about �cute cats� and robots.
Notable works
Brown�s cult-favorite comics include his debut autobiographical work Clumsy, the Ignatz Award-winning I Am Going to Be Small, and his latest work, Darth Vader and Son.
Favorite superhero
�It�s clich�d at this point, maybe, but I�d have to say Wolverine,� Brown says.
Brown will create an eight-page mini comic starting at noon on Sunday 17. He�ll take audience suggestions and answer questions about creating your own mini comic before making copies and distributing them at his table.

 (Artwork: Jeremy Tinder)
Artwork: Jeremy Tinder

Jeremy Tinder
Known for
Tinder is one of the founders of the Trubble Club, a group of artists who meets every week to collaborate and create comics together, and he teaches Indie Comic and Self-Publishing at the School of the Art Institute of Chicago.
Notable works
Cry Yourself to Sleep, a slice-of-life comic, stars a talking rabbit and a robot. Tinder also debuts a series called Elephant Ear at CAKE.
Favorite superpower
�The ability to heal myself and others�like Super Jesus or something,� Tinder says.
Tinder will present Trubble Club #5, a recently published 12-page Sunday-newspaper-style comic, which includes both stickers and an editioned silk-screen print.

 (Artwork: Laura Park)
Artwork: Laura Park

Laura Park
Known for
According to CAKE curator Fake, Park, who writes diary comics, �is one of Chicago�s comic-making gems and one of its most underappreciated artists,� thanks to the flooded genre of autobiography comics. Park is also a member of the local comics collective Trubble Club.
Notable work
Her story Freaks was Eisner-nominated (the comics equivalent of an Oscar) for Best Short Story and it ran in Best American Comics 2009.
Favorite superpower
�Invisibility, all the way!� Park says.
Park hopes to debut a mini comic, but failing that she will be selling a silkscreen print. �My tablemate Lilli Carr� will no doubt have stacks of lovely prints that she�ll be selling for miserly sums, so stock up on those,� Park notes.

You’ve heard the story before: A group of misfits band together to fight crime and right wrongs. In this case, they are Neil Brideau, Edie Fake, Max Morris, Grace Tran and Jeff Zwirek, and together they organized CAKE, the Chicago Alternative Comics Expo. For two years, the indie comic supergroup has met at Wicker Park’s Quimby’s to fight for the return of an alt comics show in Chicago after a 15-year absence. Blood, sweat and paper cuts—plus benefits like “CAKE-AROKE” and an Indiegogo online fund-raising campaign—culminate in two days of workshops, exhibitions and panels. On Saturday 16 and Sunday 17, dozens of independent artists take over Columbia College’s Ludington Building, including these four local creators.

CAKE takes place Saturday 16 and Sunday 17.