Brainded India presents Ecomixer II: Sthree Sthree September, a month of celebrating women through comics. This time we are looking to highlight the incongruity of women in India who are elevated as goddesses in rhetoric, yet dehumanised in their homes and in the streets. Playing on superheroes as a significant part of the mainstream visual language, through Sthree Sthree September we want to disrupt the tired old maternal or hypersexual images to create a new and subversive vocabulary.
The event was held online in a week-long event that featured original Indian ‘superheroines’, their powers, costume, name, insignia and origin story. The entries were featured on Brainded India over a period of ten days beginning 20 September to 30 September 2018.
The second edition of Ecomixer was curated by Catherine and Appupen.
Phase 1: An open call to our readers to send in their original superheroine sketches, detailing their powers.
Phase 2: We invited artists to create and illustrate a superheroine for the second edition of Ecomixer.
The Doodle Mafia ravishes women with unapologetic bounty, and popping colours. She also makes drawings illustrations, comics, and cutesy zines.
Miss Pummela by Annada Menon
She owns a bakery where she kneads, folds and stretches the dough; the place is her haven. The process of baking kind of trickles down to her methods of fighting goons as well. She kneads, pulls and stretches their body like a rubber band with her bare hands.
Loosely based on the artist’s mother, Miss Pummela does all the heavy lifting – takes care of her family, plants and the bakery business. She fights crime and solves problems with her bare hands, the hands of a mother, rough, worn and marked with burns but nurturing, strong and powerful.
The Girl Not From Madras by Neha Dixit and Orijit Sen
The comic follows Sakina, a 17-year-old from Assam who is sold as a ‘bride’ to a family in Haryana. Her brother with the help of an NGO is trying to rescue her. The story is told by the caped crusader Laadli (Beloved Daughter), who accompanies us through this chilling narrative that is warmed by a glimmer of hope.
First published in First Hand Graphic Non-Fiction From India. With special thanks to Arpita Das and Yoda Press
Nimona by Noelle Stevenson
Nimona is a shapeshifter with her own ideas, most of which involve blowing things up. Her entry into the ‘evil’ Lord Ballister Blackheart’s life means that he may finally accomplish things and do justice to his ilk. Nimona is now part of his cause, to show that the good guys aren’t as good as they seem. Written and drawn by Noelle Stevenson, Nimona now exits in a book.
Poonam 3000 by Xishnu.
This short but magnificent story is about a mother who does more than what is generally expected of her. A heroine in two roles, no one greater than the other.
Iota by Malavika Pc
Superheroine Iota emerges from the carnage that remains after a fire-breathing and concrete-crunching reptilian troublemaker wreaks havoc and chaos. In the wordless world that Malavika Pc creates, Iota is effortless, elegant, and efficient.
And that’s the end of Brainded’s Ecomixer Edition 2. Do also check out ECOMIXER Edition 1: 12 Comics, 12 Artists, 12 Hours