Comic books have the super-heroic ability as an artform to transform us, and the Crocker Art Museum is proud to celebrate the local achievements of our comic book community. Each year, the Crocker invites a local cartoonist, artist, or illustrator to reimagine the CrockerCon mascot, CrockerTron. This year’s CrockerTron was created by artist Dom Fambro and is available for purchase in the Museum store.
Past CrockerTron artists will also be onsite, including D. Bethel Comics & Art, Robert Love, Nooligan, and Nate Flamm of Drawcademy.
Pulitzer Prize Winners and Esteemed Guests
This year, CrockerCon is excited to present a suite of esteemed guests. At 7PM in the Setzer Foundation Auditorium, James Israel of the Humor Times joins Pulitzer Prize winning cartoonists Darrin Bell and Jack Ohman for a conversation about the state of political cartooning, insights into the profession, as well as a look inside Bell’s new graphic novel “The Talk.” Special thanks to Capital Books for hosting Bell’s book signing at 8 PM.
Also at 8 PM, Sacramento-based artist, Nooligan, presents insights into developing his signature and iconic style. In a saturated field of comics and pop arts, many artists must find their own distinctive style and voice to stand out and truly express themselves. Nooligan has collaborated with major comic brands including DC and Marvel while standing out in Artist Alleys across the country and publishing his own line of comics and artworks. He also illustrated the CrockerTron poster for 2022’s edition of ArtMix | CrockerCon.
In addition to these headlining conversations, we are thrilled to welcome five-time Eisner nominee Dan Brereton, who shares his award-winning graphic novels and art books alongside Comic Book Historians. David Andry and Christopher Alvarez debut their new book, Dead Blood, and share past works published by Vault Comics and other anthology series. We are also pleased to welcome back to CrockerCon Justin Greenwood, whose comics Stumptown, Crone, and The Fuse are published by Oni Press and Image Comics.
Many local artists and organizations are making their very first appearance at CrockerCon this year, including Cartoon Art Museum, Ranger Ralph Comics, Mortern Comics, and Amber Rankin, as well as local booksellers like Wild Sisters Book Company, A Seat at the Table Books, and Amatoria Fine Art Books. We are particularly excited to announce Noodle Pop, a youth cartoonist who has attended every CrockerCon but will have a table for the first time this year!
In addition to these CrockerCon Newbies, we celebrate the return of long-time favorites such as the artist and publisher Taurus Comics, who features works by Kyrun Silva. Explore work from Full Groan Comics, Pencil for Hire and his Cardboard Ironman, Sarah Rene Kraft, XAVIER, and Jeremy Rathbone. Artist Jesse Baggs shares some of his insights as a comic book educator, and Jared Konopitski returns to CrockerCon with an all-new gallery of wood panel paintings. Cody Vrosh and Binary Winer Press, a watercolor artist fusing sci-fi and fantasy elements into playful creatures, has a new art book, Noctilucent, and the mother-and-daughter team behind Lionel’s Place offers essentials for every Sacramento-land fan and urges you to Choose Weird!
What’s a zine? Zines are a low-cost and highly underground form of comic making and short-form magazine. In our Zine Zone, we’ve welcomed several artists who make zines, stickers, and art prints including the spooky cute work of M. Chiladas and the adorably glittery Single Pickles. Remontant Press and Andrew Jason Santos join CrockerCon for the first time.
Beyond the Pages
CrockerCon is about bringing fans together through art, and that doesn’t end with comics. Welcome back to CrockerCon the Central California Garrison of the 501st Legion and Rebel Legion, devoted Star Wars fans who custom-build screen-accurate costumes from the Star Wars franchise. League of Heroes Inspired, Star Trek fans of the The USS Independence, and Sacramento Ghostbusters use their fandom to volunteer in the community, and there is a Barbie Jeep thanks to the California Automobile Museum.
Explore the prop-making magic of Odin Makes and the work of artist Brock Alexander via the Moon Café Gallery. There is also an opportunity to learn more about the art of swordplay and sign up for classes with Sacramento Historic Fencing Academy and explore a whole different dimension of comics and pop art courtesy of Art of Toys.
The Art of Games
Nintendo joins There and Back Again Café in the historic ballroom to host video games and board games alike, and Sacramento Brick Builders showcase some of their latest LEGO builds. Local community groups like the Junior League of Sacramento and The Alchemist CDC share how to be a superhero by standing against food insecurity. Sign up or join SacGeeks to learn more about geeky events and nerdy meetups in the community. Plus, Havenhurst Press shares their latest game, RUN!, now on Kickstarter!
2023 Crocker Con Activities
Ongoing | It would be hard to imagine a CrockerCon without the eclectic and nerdy-fused beats from The Sleeprockers DJ Collective (Main Stage). Join The Reclaimist to make your own artwork with local artists using comics to make one-of-a-kind collages (EKD Courtyard), or visit the game lounge where Nintendo offers insights into Pikmin 4 and other games for the Switch and The Lord of the Rings-inspired café, There and Back Again, shares exciting board games (Ballroom).
6:15 PM | Artist and founder of Drawcademy, Nate Flamm, explores drawing fundamentals for beginners. Learn some basics that can help set you up for success! Nate Flamm was the CrockerTron artist in 2017.
6:30, 7:30, and 8:30 PM | Join Sacramento Historic Fencing Academy to witness classic swordplay duels from three iconic films: The Lord of the Rings (6:30 PM), A Princess Bride (7:30 PM), and A Long Time Ago, in a Galaxy Far Far Away (8:30 PM).
7 PM | The Crocker Art Museum is pleased to welcome Pulitzer Prize-winning cartoonists Darrin Bell and Jack Ohman for a conversation about the state of political cartooning, insights into the profession, as well as a look inside Darrin Bell’s new graphic novel “The Talk.” Moderated by James Israel of the Humor Times. Special thanks to Capital Books for hosting Darrin Bell’s book-signing at 8pm. (Setzer Foundation Auditorium)
8:30 PM | Host of the 4Tails podcast and publisher of Taurus Comics, Kyrun Silva, presents a live recorded version of the 4Tails Podcast interviewing two local comic book makers: artist Robert Love, who has published creator-owned comics through Dark Horse, Image, and other publishers; and independent webcomic creator D. Bethel, who notably created the long-running Western-webcomic, Long John, which is now in development as an animated series for FX. Love and D.Bethel illustrated CrockerTron in 2020 and 2019, respectively.