TCAF Welcomes Manga-ka Usamaru Furuya to the 2011 Festival

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival presents…
Debuting the English-language edition of his manga LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB

The Toronto Comic Arts Festival
At the Toronto Reference Library, 789 Yonge St.
Saturday May 7th 2011, 9am-5pm
Sunday May 8th 2011, 11am-5pm


TORONTO, CANADA: The Toronto Comic Arts Festival is pleased to welcome acclaimed manga creator Usamaru Furuya to the 2011 Festival! Furuya-san will be on hand to support English-language debut of his manga LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB, published by Vertical Inc. Usamaru Furuya appears at TCAF with the support of publisher Vertical Inc., and with thanks to Japanese publisher Ohta Books.

Usamaru Furuya launched his comics career within the legendary pages of GARO magazine with his debut work Palepoli. He would follow that experimental work by vigorously releasing a number of titles that displayed his elaborate artwork, and exceptional creativity. A unique ability to render a wide range of designs earned him the undying support of readers across the globe. Furuya has penned more than a dozen series since his debut, including – The Lychee Light Club (Vertical, Inc.), Genkaku Picasso (VIZ Media), The Children's Crusade, The Music of Marie, Teiichi's Empire, and Osamu Dazai's No Longer Human. Furuya's Lychee Light Club will be receiving a theatrical adaptation in the winter of 2011.

Furuya's work in English includes selections from the manga Palepoli in the anthologies Secret Comics Japan (2000, VIZ Media) and Japan Edge (1999, Cadence Books), and his hilarious look inside Japanese youth culture Short Cuts (2 volumes, 2002-2003, VIZ Media). 2010 saw the beginning of the publication of his young-adult horror series Genkaku Picasso, part of the Shonen Jump Advanced line from VIZ media. A three-volume series (completing in May 2011), the series' dual settings of a mundane junior-high classroom and the rich inner dream worlds of its young inhabitants perfectly suit Furuya-san's abilities to expertly render reality and fantasy.

Usamaru Furuya is quite popular in France as well, and accordingly he has additional works available including Tokyo Magnitude 8, La Musique de Marie, and Le Cercle du Suicide. Other works include the experimental, nearly-wordless colour manga Plastic Girl, and a collection of Furuya's paintings titled Flowers. Furuya's work has also appeared in Chinese, German, and Korean.

As mentioned, Furuya-san is at TCAF to promote his newest work, LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB, a stand-alone, 300-page graphic novel published by Vertical, Inc. LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB is considered Usamaru Furuya's breakthrough work. Originally designed as an experimental project, LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB's youthful rebellion, copious destruction, and attractive designs have won over a new generation of readers and critics, leading the way for Furuya to take on his many recent high profile properties. A surreal and touching horror comedy set in modern-day Tokyo, LLC mixes elements of the Théâtre du Grand-Guignol with modern day pop culture tropes. Shocking, sexy and innovative, LYCHEE LIGHT CLUB is at the pinnacle of modern day Japanese seinen manga (young adult comics). In North America, it is suggested for more mature readers.

Selected works from Furuya-san's career in English, French, and Japanese will be available for sale at TCAF and in the months leading up to the festival courtesy of The Beguiling.

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