Greetings Dieselfunkateers! I’ve been doing our year end reviews for a second. Each year as eventful as the last. 2018 has turned out to not only be a continuation of this trend, but also a transitional year for things to come. Black Panther opened to world wide acclaim and massive box office. Most importantly, the movie ushered in what is clearly the Age of Afrofuturism. Being a lifelong Visual Afrofuturist myself, I can say it still is very much an out of body experience. Sometimes the world does indeed catch up. The media attention allowed Dieselfunk to become much more prominent in the media landscape. I became a part time journalist for Bleeding Cool with The Dieselfunk Dispatch. Matty’s Rocket: Book One, which came out last year, continued its in-house manufacturing/production and proceeded with vigor. Very happy to report the book has been a very positive critical success. To such an extent that we showcased the work at this years Book Expo, and Brooklyn Book Festival. A tremendous honor no doubt. We pushed very hard to sell it in a guerrilla style which had a bit of success. However, as the year wore on we have had to retool to accommodate ongoing changes in circumstances. Times require flexibility and change. More on that in the coming weeks and months.
As before we had fantastic experiences at The Schomburg Black Comic Book Day, SOL-Con/CXC, Women In Comics, and Kidscomicon Festivals. We also attended the new kid on the block, The Black Comics Collective. There are more venues available to comic creators of color than ever before. My work has gathered audiences overseas as demonstrated with The Black Speculative Arts Movement. As an artist, individually, I have have begun production on what I feel is my greatest work yet, INFINITUM. Further, I have done more book covers in the effort to diversify my output. Most importantly, BLACK METROPOLIS, my one man career retrospective show, revived for a run at the Hammonds House Museum in Atlanta, GA. The show was successful enough that it will travel out west for the new year. More on that as details are finalized. 2018 has been great.
Finally, the year has brought on many personal changes. I now find myself the head of an empty nest as my children are now grown and in college. The wife and I are no longer newlyweds. My parents are growing gracefully as they get older, and I cherish the time I have with them like never before. I shall give them their flowers while they are here. And then we lose our elders as well, like my wonderful Aunt and the arrival of a young nephew with tons of energy.
As the Religion in Octavia Butler’s ‘Parables’ series describes, the only constant is change. We can be certain that GREAT change is both coming and expected.
Greetings Dieselfunkateers! BUCKET LIST LEVEL ACHIEVED!
NPR’S CLOSER LOOK WITH ROSE SCOTT ON
BLACK METROPOLIS: 30 YEARS OF AFROFUTURISM, COMICS, MUSIC, ANIMATION, DECAPITATED CHICKENS, HEROES, VILLAINS AND NEGROESEMILIA BROCK / WABE https://www.wabe.org/episode/closer-look-black-metropolis-exhibit-of-comic-book-artist-tim-fielders-work-stockbridge-mayor-anthony-ford/We talked about Afrofuturism and my experience. Also, special tip: on the site you’ll see a preview of INFINITUM. As an artist I have longed to be recognized for my work on a deeper level. For me, this extends beyond the borders of the comic industry into the deeper community at large. To achieve this goal I have my ‘goto’ outlets, one of which was always to be interviewed by National Public Radio. This wonderful experience was conducted by the Great Rose Scott. Scott is known for hard-hitting journalism on both the local and international scene. She brought it and I barely hung on from her probing queries. Bah…I LOVED EVERY MINUTE as can be seen below:
This was a fulfillment of the highest magnitude. I’d like to thank NPR, Rose, and crew, and WABE for all of their wonderful support and attention.
From the Hammonds House: Join us for the opening night of Black Metropolis. Black Metropolis presents decades of published and unpublished work by artist Tim Fielder. The primary focus of this show is to bring to light work that was part of the visual foundation that exists in this present ’Age of Afrofuturism’. Black Metropolis is the visual and emotional ideal, not necessarily the physical construct, of an infinite cosmopolitan space where Black People can be anything or anyone they choose in the PAST, PRESENT or FUTURE. https://www.hammondshouse.org/events/2018/10/12/opening-night-black-metropolis-30-years-of-afrofuturism-comics-music-animation-decapitated-chickens-heroes-villains-and-negroes
Obviously I am immensely proud of the show. It has always been a fascinating idea of my art being viewed in a gallery space. In America, comic books have largely had a disposability applied to it. Occasionally, some aspects of comic art have made its way into the work of fine artists such as in the case of Russ Heath’s panels in Roy Lichtenstein’s pieces. In this instance, my sector of art-making has always been involved around the depiction of Black People within science fiction and comic book environments. This present period, which I call The Age of Afrofuturism, has bound together the characteristics of Speculative Art and Sequential Art with the binding glue of Afrocentricity. The context of my, now 30+ year career touching on the music industry, animation, game design, film, and comics is a time capsule that is both enjoyable and moving. Further, I will be showcasing previews of my next upcoming graphic novel, INFINITUM. The fact that the Hammonds House has chosen to feature my life’s work as the finale for their 30th year of existence is humbling and I am very thankful. Expect more events surrounding the show as the WEEKS go on. Very exciting times.
Masterminded by Curator, Boston Fielder, and shepherded by Hammonds House Executive Director, Leatrice Ellzy Wright, the show revives into a world where audiences are clamoring for its specific brand of content. Black Metropolis initially premiered in 2016 at New York University’s Gallatin Galleries with the guidance of Keith Miller and Meredith Theeman. Black Metropolis has always been an initiative to showcase my work in a traveling show. I am so happy and proud to have this project continue at the Hammonds House Museum.
Greetings Dieselfunkateers! The lab is in heavy workmode on INFINITUM. But, sometimes we gotta make a journey out the door to talk about all things Matty’s Rocket. I have the honor of participating in a wonderful panel discussion moderated by NY Times Children’s Book Editor, Maria Russo. Fellow artists, Ibi Zobo, Jen Wang, and myself will be present at the Brooklyn Historical Society libary at 5:00 PM! Tremendous THANKS to Calvin Reid and Liz Koch!