Doujin Market 2017 reinforced its position as Singapore’s top youth arts & illustration event last weekend, with over 17,000 visitors flocking to Suntec Convention & Exhibition Centre for a two-day extravaganza of original and derivative fan content.
The show featured more than 200 creators from Singapore and around the region, including Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, Taiwan and Thailand. Some 60 of these were first-timers, and included students eager to explore arts entrepreneurship.
“Doujin Market has been an excellent avenue for aspiring artists to showcase their works to a receptive audience and to network with other more experienced artists,” said KC Ng, account manager of Collateral Damage Studios. “CDS is proud to have been a supporter and contributor to the convention since Day 1.”
This year, the event also saw the launch of World Doujin Day – a social media campaign on Facebook, Twitter and Tumblr to connect creators around the world, spotlighting their struggles, triumphs and dedication to improving their communities.
“What’s pop culture today will be the fine art of tomorrow,” said Jason Koh, convention producer for Doujin Market and account director of Neo Tokyo Project. “It’s important for young artists to take ownership of this burgeoning space and to canonize their creative journey as they usher in a new, disruption-driven age for comics and illustration in Singapore.”
Initiatives like World Doujin Day also help creators craft a shared history. The inauguration of Singapore’s first Doujin Archive, a time capsule for artists and visitors at Doujin Market, saw 152 original submissions, including hand-drawn illustrations, art books, handcrafted trinkets and even soft toys. These contributions will be exhibited in five years’ time, at the 10th anniversary of Doujin Market, to celebrate the community’s growth, imagination and resilience.
As part of its efforts to bring industry-relevant content to visitors, this year’s show boasted live demos, panels and seminars by veteran practitioners, including keynote segments presented by Wacom and InkInk Collectibles. Rounding out the mix of exhibitors were homegrown independent game studios Kaiju Den and Gazia Games, as well as private arts institutions MAGES Institute of Excellence and Lionheart Studio and publishing startup Animeludium.
The event will also continue its collaboration with local gaming convention GameStart Asia. Last Saturday marked the launch of submissions for the Alyse Art Contest, where artists who redesign the GameStart mascot in cyberpunk style could walk away with a free booth in the Doujin Market x GameStart 2017 artist alley.
Doujin Market is supported by Noise Movement, a part of Noise Singapore’s efforts which supports organisers whose initiatives encourage arts creation and participation among youth.
Next year’s Doujin Market will take place on 5-6 May 2018. Registration to exhibit at the event will begin early November 2017.