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Paul Mavrides: It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time

Paul Mavrides: It Seemed Like a Good Idea at the Time

Friday, February 2, 2018, 12:00pm – 2:00pm
Location: Ann Arbor District Library (Downtown), 343 S 5th Ave, Ann Arbor, MI 48104
Calendar: Stamps Events

On Friday, February 2, join us for a talk by artist Paul Mavrides at the Ann Arbor District Library’s downtown branch. Mavrides, a long-time resident of San Francisco’s Mission district, will discuss his peripatetic comics, graphics, paintings, and artworks that expose, explore, and exploit the cultural oddities, conspiratorial mysteries and all-too-human fiascos of contemporary society.

Mavrides is a member of the ZAP Comix group, as well as a founding associate of J.R. “Bob” Dobbs’ SubGenius Foundation. His many collaborators have included Gilbert Shelton, Robert Crumb, Harvey Pekar, film directors Alex Cox and Ron Mann, Survival Research Laboratories and The Residents, among others.

Mavrides is a Witt Visiting Artist at the Stamps School of Art & Design January 31 - February 3, 2018. This event is co-sponsored by the Transnational Comics Studies Workshop.


Paul Mavrides is a San Francisco-based cartoonist and painter. His work has been published in various comics anthologies, including Z​AP​​, Young Lust, Anarchy Comics,​ ​and Real War Stories, and he collaborated with underground cartoonist Gilbert Shelton on The Fabulous Furry Freak Brothers in the ‘70s and ‘80s. He also illustrated several Harvey Pekar stories for American Splendor. ​His comics have also appeared in The Village Voice, The New Yorker,​ The San Francisco Chronicle, ​Heavy Metal Magazine, and many more.​ He’s collaborated on projects with Spain Rodriguez, Robert Crumb, S. Clay Wilson, director Alex Cox (Repo Man), and many other artists.

He was active in the San Francisco punk scene, contributing to RE/Search Publications (SEARCH AND DESTROY, RE/Search Magazine, and many other titles), and collaborating with Survival Research Laboratories.

​Notably, Paul was one of the founding members of “The Church of the Sub-Genius,” and created much of the artwork associated with the organization. A film about the church is in now in production.

In 19​96​, ​after a 5-year battle, ​Mavrides successfully won a court ruling that banned the state of California from levying a sales tax on comic strips and comic books. Following the ruling, Mavrides said, “It’s gratifying that, after five years of struggle, the State of California, through the decision of the Board of Equalization, has officially and rightfully recognized that what cartoonists and comic creators trade in are ideas, not pieces of paper.” ​ ​ He subsequently was awarded the ​J​ames Madison Freedom of Information Award by the Society of Professional Journalists and the Defender of Liberty Award from the Comic Book Legal Defense Fund​.

He was involved in the production of several films, including Ron Mann’s Comic Book Confidential.

​He has given lectures at the ​San Francisco Art Institute, ​ University of California Berkeley, ​ Stanford University, ​ The Art Academy of San Francisco, and many others.​

Upcoming Occurrences:

No upcoming occurrences in the timeframe specified for this event.