People of Steel: Heroism vs. Activism and the Queer Origin Story Saturday, May 14, 2016 6:00pm / The ArQuives / 34 Isabella Street, Toronto Followed by the Toronto Comic Arts Festival (TCAF) 2016 Queer Mixer at Buddies in Bad Times Theatre. Every superhero has an origin story: a typically epic account of the circumstances under which they gained their powers and emerged as heroes. So what is the queer origin story? Who or what gave contemporary queer heroes the powers they have today, and how can real life queer activists become the stuff of comic book legend? This The ArQuives-hosted panel discussion will call upon the powers of three extraordinary queer comic artists (moderated by superhero comics expert, Neil Shyminsky), to discuss their own practices as well as prior groundbreaking representations of nonfiction heroics by marginalized peoples. The conversation will address hands-on strategies for picturing strong queer protagonists as grounded in real life histories. Panellists include: Coco Guzman (, Ronnie Ritchie (, Sfé R. Monster (, and Moderator Neil Shyminsky ( This TCAF event coincides with Toronto-based photographer Tania Anderson’s retrospective photo exhibit, We Could Be Heroes (Just for One Day), currently on view at The ArQuives. * Accessibility Note: The ArQuives is undergoing changes to its facilities with respect to accessibility. We regret that the panel discussion space is up one flight of stairs.