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A non-governmental Slovenian agency which serves to unite artists from all walks of artistic life, Forum Ljubljana helps video, musical, fine, and comic artists combine their talent and get their work to market.
As far as this database is concerned, its most important subgroup is Strip Core, the branch directly responsible for the publication of comics--and some other forms of unusual sequential art.
The fact that this parent organization promotes several other types of art has undoubtedly influenced Strip Core's work in a way that probably wouldn't have happened had Strip Core been an entirely independent, commercial firm. Imagine if DC were a branch of the Smithsonian, or Dark Horse were run by the British Museum, and you come close to understanding the kind of influence the Forum has on Slovenian comics. While they formally have a "hands off" approach to their comic label, the fact that so many artists from such a variety of different backgrounds (both academic and practical) exist within one organization, inevitably colors the editorial direction of Strip Core.
Thematically, this is evident in their flagship publication, Stripburger. It has done everything from what English-speaking audiences would recognize as a true comic strip, to outright porn, to pro-ecology, anti-war, and anti-Nazi anthologies.
Stylistically, the influence of the Forum is particularly evident. Artists who otherwise would be considered fine artists have often been encouraged to submit sequential art to Stripburger. Some of Strip Core's work clearly would be labeled not Jim Lee-esque or Frank Millerian, but firmly post-modern or even cubist. Other bits would be seen as the work of students. And some would be uniquely Slovenian. The best example of the influence of the academic side of the Forum on Strip Core's work has to be their invaluable research into uniquely Slovenian artistry. This research would bear practical fruit in an issue issue which told a story in the style of an ancient Slovenian bee hive painting.
In addition to influencing the substance and style of Strip Core's work, the Forum probably has something to do with the scope of their comic label's work, too. Their contacts across Europe have allowed them to assist Strip Core in putting together English-language compilation issues featuring the work of Eastern European artists who otherwise wouldn't have been noticed in the English-speaking world.
Without too much doubt, the unique partnership of Forum Ljubljana and the once-underground artists at Stripburger have produced the one of the widest varieties of sequential art from any single publishing arrangement in the history of comics--especially when judged on a per-issue basis.
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