Starting out in 1984, people at Zürich based comic magazine Strapazin have made it their mission to feature comic artists who don’t go along mainstream tastes. Vanguard imagery, topics, artists and storytellers frequently have found a home there and when debating European comic art and culture, Strapazin has become an essential part. For almost 30 years the magazine „goes along with, observes, encourages and reflects on the development of the medium and it is this indefatigable commitment that helped facilitate the creation of an independent comics scene in most German-speaking countries of Europe“. A commitment that has not gone unnoticed by the rest of the world. Of course there’s the lost-case person who, once in a while, will bubble out something about Micky Mouse, when the magic word „comics“ is mentioned. But still there is a growing number of people who are fascinated by these exciting ways of storytelling and artistic narrative styles – even if they don’t comply with the classic ideas of the medium at all. This cultural rise and establishment as a modern form of expression we owe – last but not least – to magazines like Strapazin.
„Comics Deluxe!“ – an exhibition organized by curators Christian Gasser and Anette Gehrig – portrays this exceptional magazine and outlines the creation and development of an independent comics scene. Artits like ATAK, Peter Bäder, M.S. Bastian, Isabelle L., Caprez/Schuler, Anke Feuchtenberger, Ursula Fürst, Andreas Gefe, Sascha Hommer, Ulli Lust, Nicolas Mahler, Julia Marti, Thomas Ott, Kati Rickenbach, Anna Sommer, Milva Stutz or Martin Tom Dieck have found a home there – as well as a wide audience. The exhibition at Basel shows a number of their works starting November 10, 2012 until March 3, 2013. The museum's permanent collection consists of almost 3,400 original works of art completed by ca. 2,000 loans of 700 artists of the 20th and 21st century collected from more than 40 countries all over the world. This accounts for a very representative and high quality selection of cartoons and caricatures and a wide and fascinating number of techniques. A collection that is still about to grow: The museum frequently buys more importand works of nationally and internationally renouned artists. It also features a number of promising newcomers. We think: Worth a visit!