A New Exhibition Explores The Legend Of Blue Mamba

Posted: 18 October 2013
Category: Features
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An exhibition featuring Blue Mamba, a character created by cartoonist and comics creator Andy Mason, has opened in Cape Town and features 15 years' worth of work that is explored in the new graphic novel The Legend Of Blue Mamba.

Andy Mason (N.D. Mazin)'s seminal character Blue Mamba is a hedonistic surfer who becomes the face of the monolithic, capitalistic empire Toxacorp before having a spiritual awakening that enlightens him to the evils of his ways and causes him to reject the deal with the corporation, with dire consequences. Andy recently published a graphic novel, The Legend Of Blue Mamba, that collects the Blue Mamba work that he has completed over the last 15 years, which has been published in numerous magazines and anthologies, and even comprises artworks and surfboards.

The exhibition, which opened last night at Alive Café Creative Experience Hub in Muizenberg, comprises original artwork from the book (some of which is for sale), prints, posters, paintings, and the four Blue Mamba surfboards that Andy produced for the annual Wavescape Surf Art Auction. All the pieces in the exhibition are incorporated in some way in the book (even the surfboards), which are a particular treat to see as they are all privately owned and this is the first time they've been exhibited.

The Legend Of Blue Mamba
Blue Mamba Exhibition: an Azaniamania strip

Blue Mamba Exhibition: self portrait

Blue Mamba Exhibition

Blue Mamba Exhibition

Blue Mamba Exhibition: stuck in the 60s

Blue Mamba Exhibition: a close-up view of the stuck in the 60s art

Blue Mamba Exhibition

The Legend Of Blue Mamba was launched at this year's Open Book Comics Festival and I will be posting a summary of that launch, as well as more about the book, in future articles on brainwavez.org.

Blue Mamba Exhibition: surfboard

Blue Mamba Exhibition: close-up view of a surfboard

Blue Mamba Exhibition: surfboards

Blue Mamba Exhibition: surfboard

Blue Mamba Exhibition: close-up views of two surfboards

Longboard Auction For The Parallel Lives Project
Blue Mamba Exhibition: Andy Mason and Steve Pike with the auction longboard

Part of the opening night's festivities included an auction of a longboard that Andy has painted. The proceeds are going towards his new initiative, Parallel Lives, which will bring teenage comic artists from all over Cape Town together to work on a graphic storytelling project.

There was a not-so-secret reserve price on the longboard so the first few bids were just amusements to rev up the crowd but once the price was reached the auction became very serious and intense. It finally came down to two people who slowly pushed up, taking more and more time to consider each new bid, until a winner finally emerged at R12 500, which is a great amount to help the project.

Blue Mamba Exhibition: close-up view of the auction longboard

The aim of Parallel Lives is to get disparate lives, whether they are from Constantia, Khayelitsha, Woodstock, or Mitchell's Plain, to work together, fostering opportunities for cultural experience and growth. Cape Town suffers from a problem of "parallel lives", in which people from different classes and races tend to drift next to each other as they go about their daily lives but never really intersect, and one aim of this project is to address that, particularly in a suburb, Muizenberg, that is a great equaliser - whatever your background, everyone goes there to surf; everyone has that experience in common.

Parallel Lives will form part of the 2014 Muizenberg Festival so look out for that next year. In the meantime, make a point of visiting Alive Café in Muizenberg to visit the Blue Mamba exhibition.

The Blue Mamba exhibition runs until 30 October 2013 at Alive Café Creative Experience Hub (contact details below), 11 Atlantic Road, Muizenberg, Cape Town. Copies of The Legend Of Blue Mamba are also available there.

Tags: #arts_and_culture, #books, #cape_town, #comics, #speculative_fiction

On The Internet
Alive Café Creative Experience Hub: Official Site, Facebook, YouTube

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