Concert-con, comic-con… body-con?

Comic book artists, musicians and poets gathered at the Bedlam Theatre on Saturday night for Moving Bodies

Savannah Reising speaks with Artist Carlos Merino about his comic art while performers hit the stage on Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 at the Bedlam Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Easton Green

Savannah Reising speaks with Artist Carlos Merino about his comic art while performers hit the stage on Saturday, Sept. 10, 2016 at the Bedlam Theater in St. Paul, Minnesota.

Gunthar Reising

On one end of the room, a folk quartet sang covers. The other end rang with the nerdy conversations that occur when people congregate over a mutual passion. Tables displaying the works of local comic book artists stretched in-between.

Welcome to Moving Bodies at the Bedlam — a one-time event intended to garner interest in Chance Wyatt’s Kickstarter-funded comic book “Moving Bodies.”

“I don’t know if you’re into comics or if you’re into music or if you’re into booze, but I hope you get into all three tonight,” local comic book writer and the event’s emcee Lucas Munson said.

The eclectic event opened with Nomad, a folk quartet that performed synchronously as the comic book convention heated up.

“I just happen to know some people in music and comics who are losers like me and want to get their work out,” Wyatt said.

The evening’s entertainment continued with Kathleen Towell reading her poetry to the over-stimulated crowd.

Towell, like most of the artists present, was a friend of Wyatt. They met at a local coffee shop.

“We’re just some pretentious nerds getting together and talking about our creations,” Wyatt said with the most charming self-deprecation.

Wyatt’s project and the event’s namesake is a science fiction graphic novel.

“[It’s] an attempt to show the kind of interstellar world we might live in in the future,” Wyatt said. “If we did live in-between stars, what would that look like?”

Despite no background in science or art, Wyatt is determined to combine the two.

“The goal is to have a lot of science that you can look at through a keyhole … it’s stuff to think about,” he said.

Posters of illustrations from “Moving Bodies” gave the venue a dark aesthetic you’d find in a Ridley Scott film. Although his work’s name suggests a zombie apocalypse, Wyatt said he has no desire to make comic books for popular appeal.

“I feel like Kickstarter is the place for me because my comic books aren’t about superheroes,” he said.

The Kickstarter campaign to get “Moving Bodies” published has raised just over $5,000.

“I was asking for $750 … so we’re doing well,” Wyatt said.

On stage, Munson demanded the audience give the performing artists a bigger round of applause. He then took a break from his emcee duties to return to the comic book tables where he was also exhibiting some of his work.

Munson is the author of “Siamese,” a science fiction comic about a man who encounters a woman identical to his late wife.

“I had this dream that I thought would make the most incredible story. I thought, ‘What the hell, I want to try to write one of these things,’” Munson said.

From 10 p.m. until 2 a.m., enthusiastic comic book artists merged with musicians over art and alcohol — just as Munson had
hoped.