Click to search the Andrew Heiskell Braille and Talking Book Library Skip Navigation

Registration Opens for Schomburg’s 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival


Ayofemi Kirby |

December 19, 2017 (Press Photos) – The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture has opened registration for its 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival that will be held on January 12-13, 2018 at the Schomburg Center. Registration is free and open to the public and is available at

The 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival will include a cosplay show, screenings, panels and discussion on topics including diversity and social justice in comics, black comics in digital spaces, black masculinity in comic books, and much more. In 2017, more than 12,000 participants visited the Schomburg over the two-day community event that connects comic readers, creators, bloggers, nerds, independent publishers, and collectors of all ages. 

The upcoming festival will also feature exclusive content from Black Panther: Soul of a Machine, a graphic novel created by Lexus and Marvel, who partnered on the car featured in the upcoming Black Panther movie. Lexus is the presenting sponsor of the 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival. 

“Comics and graphic novels have long entertained and educated, and continue to have always had significant mass appeal in encouraging and improving literacy among readers of all ages,” said Schomburg Center Director Kevin Young. “As a library, archive and cultural center dedicated to the global Black experience, the Schomburg is proud to be home of the Black Comic Book Festival, where the comix community can continue elevating discourse around comics as literature, and about diversity on and behind comic book pages.” 

“We’re extremely excited to bring the comic book festival back to Harlem for its 6th year and to offer a program that excites and engages thousands of comix creators and fans from all over the world,” said Jerry Craft, co-founder of the Black Comic Book Festival. “This is a program created and driven by the community, and its support continues to grow, showing that appetite for comix and creators of color is stronger than ever before.”

Participants in this year’s Black Comic Book Festival are encouraged to wear their favorite cosplay costumes, and to contribute to the Schomburg Center’s growing collection of black independent comic books by bringing single copies of old or new titles from their home collection. All donations will become part of the Schomburg’s permanent collection and will contribute to a unique and growing archive documenting comics and the black speculative arts movement. 

The 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival is presented by festival co-founders Jerry Craft (Mama’s Boyz), John Jennings (Black Kirby /University of California-Riverside), Deirdre Hollman (Black Comics Collective), and Jonathan Gayles (White Scripts and Black Supermen /Georgia State University), and with generous support from Lexus. 

For more information on the Schomburg’s Annual Black Comic Book Festival, please email

For all interview and on-site media requests please email

The 6th Annual Black Comic Book Festival program is below: 

Note: Times and panelists are subject to change. 


10:00AM | All Locations
Exhibitor Tables Open to the Public

10:00AM - 10:15AM | Langston Hughes Auditorium
Welcome to Day 1

10:15AM - 12:30PM | Langston Hughes Auditorium
Youth Program:  Heroes of Color & Super Kids!
*Free books for kids!

  • Part 1: 10:15AM-10:45AM
    Screening of Heroes of Color Animated Shorts
    Presented by David Heredia
  • Part 2: 10:45AM-12:30PM
    Super Kids! Panel Presentation
    Presenters: Jamar Nicholas (Leon), Jamal Igle (Molly Danger), Micheline Hess (Malice and Ovenland), David Miller (Khalil’s Way), and Jerry Craft (Mama’s Boyz)

1:30PM - 2:45PM
Black Characters Matter: Social Justice and Representation in Comics
Moderated by Deirdre Hollman (Black Comics Collective)
Panelists: Dawud Anyabwile (Brotherman Comics), Tony Medina & Stacey Robinson (I Am Alfonso Jones), and Eric Velasquez (Schomburg: The Man Who Built a Library)

Digging Through the Crates: Chronicling Black Comics Culture
Moderated by Professor William Foster
Panelists: Sheena Howard (The Encyclopedia of Black Comics), and Joe Illidge (Black Comix Returns), Brother Kendu Cheek (Konscious Comics)

Screening: Exclusive Clip from Black Panther presented by Florence Kasumba

Black Panther: A Hero and A Movement
Moderated by Kevin Young
A conversation with Schomburg Director Kevin Young, Florence Kasumba (Black Panther), Professor Jonathan Gayles ("White Scripts and Black Supermen"), Professor Kinitra Brooks (“Searching for Sycorax: Black Women in Contemporary Horror”), Illustrator Alitha Martinez ("World of Wakanda") exploring the context, impact, and legacy of Black Panther as a ground-breaking character and a social-political movement.


10:00AM | All Locations
Exhibitor Tables Open to the Public 

10:00AM - 10:15AM | Langston Hughes Auditorium
Welcome to Day 2

10:15AM - 11:15AM
Film Screening: White Scripts and Black Supermen: Black Masculinities in Comic Books by Jonathan Gayles

11:30AM - 12:45PM
Differential Powers in the African Diaspora
Moderated by Jonathan Gayles (White Scripts and Black Supermen, Georgia State University)
Panelists: William Jones (Afrofuturism Network), Grace Gibson (University of California Berkeley), Julian Chambliss (Rollins College)

1:45PM - 2:45PM
Reimagining the Past: Historical Fiction and Alternative Histories 
Moderated by Ebony Elizabeth Thomas (University of Pennsylvania)
Panelists: Greg Burnham (Tuskegee Heirs), Ray Felix (Bronx Heroes), Kamau Ware (Black Gotham)

3:00PM - 3:30PM
Cosplay Showcase

3:45PM - 4:45 PM
The Brown Universe: Diversity in Comics
Moderated by M’Shindo Kuumba
Panelists: Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez (Boriquena), [Laserman by Rajive Anand?] and Marcus Williams (Tuskegee Heirs).

5:00PM - 5:45 PM
KickStarter Workshop
Presented by Greg Elysee (Is’Nana the Were-Spider)

5:45PM - 6:45 PM
Black Comics and the Digital Community: How Black Geekdom has taken over the Worlds of Social Media
Moderated by Karama Horne (The Blerdgurl)
Panelists: Kwanzaa Osajeyfo (Black), and Regine Sawyer (Locketdown Productions and Women in Comics Collective)

*Festival program subject to change

Akinseye Brown (Sokoya Productions); Andre Batts (Urban Style Comics); André LeRoy Davis (artist & writer); Anthony Pugh (Kid Buster); Chuck Dragon Black Collins (Bounce, DSX); Corey Fields (Nukleus Comics); Dashen (Nukleus Comics); David Heredia (Heredia Designs); Dawud Anyabwile (Brotherman: Revelation, Monster); Dedren Snead (Sorghum & Spear); Deirdre Hollman (Black Comics Collective); Dewunmi Roye Okupe (E.X.O.-The Legend of Wale Williams); Edgardo Miranda-Rodriguez (Boriquena); Eric Wilkerson (Illustration); Gerard Griffith (Premiere Comics); Greg Anderson Elysee (Is’nana the Were-Spider); Greg Burnham (Tuskegee Heirs); Jamar Nicholas (Leon: Protector of the Playground); Jason Reeves (KADE: Prodigal Sun, One Nation: Black Lotus); Jerome Walford (Nowhere Man, Gwan, Forward Comix); Jerry Craft (New Kid / Mama’s Boyz); Joel Christian Gill (Strange Fruit & Tales of The Talented Tenth); Kamau Ware (Black Gotham); Karl Bollers (Watson and Holmes); Keith Knight (The K Chronicles, The Knight Life, (Th)ink); Keith Miller (RatRonin Studios); Khary Randolph (BLACK); Kurt Bollers (Black Watch Books); Kwanza Osajyefo (BLACK); Maia Crown Williams (MECCA Con, BSAM); Marcus Williams (Tuskegee Heirs); Maya Grant-Richardson (Sheeba Maya artist); Michael Brantley (; Michael White (aka Miguel Blanco); Micheline Hess (Malice in Ovenland); N Steven. Harris (illustrator); Naseed Gifted (P. B. Soldier);Onli Studios (Malcolm 10); Paris Cullins (Blue Devil, Blue Beetle); Prof. William Foster (Finally in Full Color, comic historian); Rajive Anand (Laserman); Ray Felix (The Greatest Hero Black Power, Bronx Heroes); Regine Sawyer (Lockett Down Productions / Women in Comics Collective); Robert Garrett (Xmoor Studios); Sarah Litt (BLACK); Shauna Grant (Princess Love Pon); Shawn Alleyne (Pyroglyphics Studio); Sheena C. Howard (The Encyclopedia of Black Comics); Stacey Robinson (I Am Alphonso Jones);  Stephane Metayer (Tephlon Funk); T.J. Sterling (RAE Comics);Tim Fielder (Matty's Rocket); Tim Smith (BLACK); Tony Medina (I Am Alphonso Jones);Whitney Taylor (Ghost Stories); Yesenia Moises; Yorli Huff (Superhero Huff); Yumy Odom (ECBACC)


About the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture 
The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture, a research unit of The New York Public Library, is generally recognized as one of the leading institutions of its kind in the world. For over 90 years the Center has collected, preserved, and provided access to materials documenting black life, and promoted the study and interpretation of the history and culture of peoples of African descent. Educational and Cultural Programs at the Schomburg Center complement its research services and interpret its collections. Seminars, forums, workshops, staged readings, film screenings, performing arts programs, and special events are presented year-round. More information about Schomburg’s collections and programs can be found at 

About the New York Public Library 
The New York Public Library is a free provider of education and information for the people of New York and beyond. With 92 locations—including research and branch libraries—throughout the Bronx, Manhattan, and Staten Island, the Library offers free materials, computer access, classes, exhibitions, programming and more to everyone from toddlers to scholars, and has seen record numbers of attendance and circulation in recent years. The New York Public Library serves more than 18 million patrons who come through its doors annually and millions more around the globe who use its resources at To offer this wide array of free programming, The New York Public Library relies on both public and private funding. Learn more about how to support the Library at 

About Lexus 
Lexus launched in 1989 with two luxury sedans and a commitment to pursue perfection. Since that time, Lexus has expanded its line-up to meet the needs of global luxury customers. Lexus is now going beyond its reputation for high quality vehicles with the integration of innovative technology, emotional exterior and interior designs, and engaging driving dynamics and performance. With six models incorporating Lexus Hybrid Drive, Lexus is the luxury hybrid leader. Lexus also offers eight F SPORT models and one F performance model. In the United States, Lexus vehicles are sold through 236 dealers who are committed to exemplary customer service.