The Simpsons creator Matt Groening will make his first visit to Australia for GRAPHIC, a festival celebrating music, film and the illustrated arts
Credit: Supplied courtesy of GRAPHIC

Few figures in the pantheon of popular culture have left as indelible a mark as Matt Groening, the creator of the longest running scripted series in television history The Simpsons and the headline attraction of the Sydney Opera House’s GRAPHIC Festival lineup, announced this morning.

For a festival devoted to the celebration of pop culture in its manifold forms – graphic storytelling, illustration, comics, animation, film and music in particular – you would be hard pressed to find a more worthy headliner than Groening, whose most significant contribution to entertainment has garnered 32 Emmy Awards across 28 seasons.

GRAPHIC co-curator and Head of Contemporary Music at Sydney Opera House, Ben Marshall, acknowledged as much, saying in a statement, “GRAPHIC exists to highlight and champion those singular voices in comics, animation, illustration and contemporary music that are capable of producing great art, but are usually passed over in traditional arts conversations. I think there’s no better embodiment of this idea, dead or alive, than Matt Groening – which is why we’ve been chasing him to appear at GRAPHIC for six years. We can’t quite believe the moment’s finally here and doubly thrilled it’s with his close friend and cartoonist extraordinaire Lynda Barry.”

Groening and Barry will appear in conversation to discuss their illustrious careers and lifelong friendship in a session to be held after Groening’s talk, Secrets of The Simpsons, and a Couple of Milhouse Fun Facts, alongside Australian premiere screenings of George Lucas’ sci-fi directorial debut THX 1138 and two documentaries from Neil Gaiman, Dream Dangerously and Likely Stories in addition to numerous free talks from Australian political cartoonists and commentators Michael Leunig and First Dog on the Moon.

You can view the full program and find out more information here.

The sixth annual GRAPHIC will take place at the Sydney Opera House on November 4 and 5. Tickets go on sale this coming Friday September 16.

Tile and cover image: Supplied courtesy of GRAPHIC and the Sydney Opera House