Announcing New Frontiers Anthology Inspired by the Life of George Takei

The team behind the groundbreaking Asian American superhero anthologies Secret Identities and Shattered, in partnership with the Japanese American National Museum, have issued a Call for Submissions for New Frontiers: The Many Worlds of George Takei, an original graphic novel anthology that will serve as a companion volume to JANM’s historic exhibition of the same name (running through August 2017), which showcases Takei’s life and the cultural landscapes through which he has traveled. The anthology’s target publication date is July 2017.

Diverse creators with stories to share that speak to the themes and issues Takei has confronted in his life are encouraged to pitch them at the Submissions Form located at here before the pitch deadline of April 24, 2017. Relevant issues include, but are not limited to: unlawful incarceration, status as an “illegal” alien and the push for LGBTQ equality and civil rights for all, yellowface, whitewashing, media stereotypes, and the rise of digital culture and social media.

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Amy Chu Live at the CTRL+ALT Reading Lounge

In another live edition of Hard NOC Life recorded exclusively from the NOC Reading Lounge at CTRL+ALT — the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s pop-up culture lab in the former Pear River Mart location in SoHo — writer Amy Chu stops by to talk about angry Asians, adding diversity to the world of Poison Ivy, and being a woman of color in the comics industry.

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Vishavjit Singh is the Captain America We Deserve

We continue our special editions of Hard NOC Life recorded exclusively from the NOC Reading Lounge at CTRL+ALT, the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s pop-up culture lab in the former Pear River Mart location in SoHo. Today’s one-on-one conversation features Sikh Captain America himself, cartoonist Vishavjit Singh.

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Black Friday Special: Jamal Igle at CTRL+ALT

Earlier this month, we were part of CTRL+ALT, the Smithsonian Asian Pacific American Center’s pop-up culture lab in the former Pear River Mart location in SoHo. Along with Clark University’s Betsy Huang, our fearless leader Keith Chow co-hosted a reading lounge in which they held workshops, panels, and salon discussions with other artists. We’ll be bringing you these sessions over the next few weeks, starting with this one-on-one conversation between Keith and renowned comic artist Jamal Igle.

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CTRL+ALT: A Culture Lab on Imagined Futures, This Weekend in New York City

Like the rest of the nation, I woke up this morning to an unfathomable reality. Despite our best efforts, the country has chosen hate and division. Those dystopian science-fiction novels don’t feel so far off anymore. Still, we at The Nerds of Color must soldier on. I’m doing that by participating in CTRL+ALT, the Smithsonian’s pop-up Culture Lab on imagined futures this weekend in New York City. Though, to be honest, I’m having a difficult time imagining the present, much the less the future.

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#CrossLines Takes Over the Smithsonian This Memorial Day Weekend

This weekend, the historic Arts & Industries Building at the Smithsonian will be the place to be when over 40 artists and scholars participate in a pop-up culture lab on intersectionality called CrossLines. And The Nerds of Color will be there all weekend conducting podcast interviews (Hard NOC LIVE, if you will) with artists and writers like Shawn Martinbrough, Ellen Oh, and more. And on Sunday evening, bring a sci-fi/fantasy book or graphic novel and join in on the NOC Book Swap.

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Milestone Media Returns

The Washington Post broke the news this morning, but it looks like Milestone Media will be making its long awaited return in 2015. This time, filmmaker Reginald Hudlin will be joining original co-founders Denys Cowan and Derek Dingle in rebooting Milestone 2.0.

Coincidentally, Geppi’s Entertainment Museum recently announced it would be extending its “Milestones: African Americans in Comics, Pop Culture, and Beyond” exhibit — curated by original co-founder Michael Davis and Tatiana EL-Khouri — through February. (Here’s my recap of the exhibit’s opening in December 2013).

Needless to say, NOC HQ is very excited about these events.

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Hello Kitty, Not Actually a Kitty — Or Asian

In a stunning development, it has been revealed that Hello Kitty, Sanrio’s iconic — and forever mouthless — character is not, and has never been, an actual cat. How is that possible, you ask? Beats me.

The Los Angeles Times broke the news today — in advance of a special exhibit at the Japanese American National Museum in Little Tokyo — in an interview with noted Hello Kitty scholar Christine R. Yano:

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My Visit to the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka

by Martin Hsu | Originally posted at MartinHsu.com

[Ed. Note: Two Februarys ago, the artist Martin Hsu made a pilgrimage to the famed Ghibli museum outside Tokyo. Since it’s Miyazaki Week, I asked Martin if we could republish the recap of his visit here. So enjoy! —KC]

As a self- proclaimed Studio Ghibli nut, the Ghibli Museum in Mitaka, Tokyo has got to be one of my favorite places in the world. It’s a magical and heartfelt place anyone can enjoy even if you don’t believe in Totoro.

Unlike the usual commercialized theme parks which are built upon revenue, the Ghibli Museum clearly stays true to the visions of Miyazaki-sensei with the sole purpose to inspire, educate, and entertain. The scale of the museum would not be considered large according to traditional standards, but every panel of the wooden floor, every curve of the craftsman metal, and every piece of the stained glass windows is made and placed with precision, intention, and lots of love. It’s very much a reflection of Studio Ghibli films.

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Denys Cowan’s Art Has Been Found

Quick update on the artwork that UPS “lost” en route to Geppi’s Entertainment Museum in Baltimore. It appears that all 28 pieces have been returned to Denys Cowan. Unfortunately, they have not been returned in the same condition in which they were shipped. Still, it’s good to know that this injustice has been rectified in some small way.

Cowan took to social media to deliver a special message to his fans and all involved in holding UPS’ feet to the fire. His message, as posted on Michael Davis’ website, is after the jump.

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