This year Comic Con Africa brings you StreetCon, the perfect collaboration of Urban x Pop Culture, with a programme showcasing the freshest streetwear and gear, urban art, street culture and more, all inspired by Pop Culture, from 22 to 25 September at the Joburg Expo Centre, Nasrec. It is co-located with Comic Con Africa.
“We see massive inspiration drawn from comic and pop culture in the streetwear and apparel industries as well as in street art and culture, so it was time to bring it all together at the festival,” says Carla Massmann, Show Director of Comic Con Africa.
StreetCon will offer guests an immersive experience. Centred around the StreetCon Stage guests will be able to connect with artists, brands, industry leaders and creatives sharing their insight through a series of talks, interviews and panel discussions.
This platform for local and upcoming street brands features the best in local talent with live graffiti and sketch battles, a one-of-a-kind tattoo alley, special activations, and the StreetGear Pavilion, a concept store where fans will be able to buy the latest and best StreetCon and Pop culture merchandise, including caps, sneakers, t-shirts and accessories. Expect massive specials and exclusive drops!
“We see pop culture characters, comics, and anime embedded in most of the fashion in youth culture today, and it only makes sense to open a space at the show to give this audience access to it,” says Massmann.
The first year of StreetCon will shine a spotlight on local brands and change-makers who are shaking things up. These include street artists like Bushy Whopp and That Damn Vandal, and other up-and-coming brands looking to showcase their genuine and unique styles. Bathu Sneakers will be one of the spotlight brands at the show. They have an amazing and inspirational story of being one of the first African sneaker brands to rise to success whilst staying authentic to Africa.
According to Thabo Manenja, the Brand Manager of Bathu Sneakers, it made perfect sense for the brand to exhibit at StreetCon. “We were born in the streets, meant for the streets, and people [are] always wanting to reach greater heights. Street culture and pop culture are big, and it is a market that keeps on growing. We want to be leaders in that space. Most South Africans do not know about the story of Vans, yet they wear it. StreetCon presents a chance for us to influence some of these choices [,share our band story] and have people in the streets rock Bathu sneakers” says Manenja. The Bathu Sneakers stand will feature its new range, the Switch 1120, which is designed for people on the go.
Tattoo Alley will host some of South Africa’s best tattoo artists and StreetCon visitors will be able to get inked there and then or commission their dream design for later. Everyone will be able to celebrate their favourite series, anime, movie, or other character, by getting a work of art created by one of the artists on-site.
StreetCon will also feature Graffiti battles throughout the show presented by Grayscale Store. Hosting various rounds from the first day of the show and culminating in a hotly-contested final, the battles will see new and established artists go head-to-head.
StreetCon will have something for everyone. It adds to the already rich creative offering that the show has. Klipdrift, one of South Africa’s favourite brands will also be at the show with a barber shop set-up where visitors can get a fresh style or even have a character trimmed into their new fade. Offering a place to relax and take in everything StreetCon has to offer, and the Klipdrift barber activation and retro gaming area will also be something to come through and enjoy while kicking back with a refreshing drink as you take in the show.
About Comic Con Africa: Comic Con Africa is Africa’s largest multi-genre pop-culture, gaming, and fan festival. The festival features a large range of pop culture and entertainment elements including cosplay, comic books, anime, manga, tech, film and series, gaming (including video, mobile and esports) toys, gadgets, clothing, collectable card games, fantasy/sci-fi books and authors as well as the ever-popular Artists’ Alley. The inaugural 2018 event welcomed over 42 000 visitors (ABC Audited) and 2019 saw over 70 000. In 2019 KidsCon was a new addition to the festival, allowing for the festival to be the ultimate family day out with loads of activities for all to enjoy. A single Comic Con Africa ticket gets you access to both Cons at Johannesburg Expo Centre NASREC on 22 – 25 September 202. www.comicconafrica.co.za