Discipline: Literature – fiction

Julia Mata

Discipline: Literature – fiction
Region: Long Beach, CA
MacDowell Fellowships: 2022

Julia Mata is an illustrator and comic book author with roots in Central America and the Eastern European Jewish Pale of Settlement. In her illustrations and comics, she centers nuanced narratives with space for joy, beauty, and emotional growth.

She is one-third of Spicy Mango Comics, a publication collective and independent press run by three friends who make comics, zines, and other publications. Julia writes and draws the comics series, “Crisis!” and creates visuals and imagery for women of color-run projects and initiatives.

At MacDowell in 2022, Mata wrote and completed the first draft of her debut graphic novel Crisis!, to be released by Drawn & Quarterly in late 2023.



Julia Mata worked in the Sprague-Smith studio.

In January of 1976, the original Sprague-Smith Studio — built in 1915–1916 and funded by music students of Mrs. Charles Sprague-Smith of the Veltin School — was destroyed by fire. Redesigned by William Gnade, Sr., a Peterborough builder, the fieldstone structure was rebuilt the same year from the foundation up, reusing the original fieldstone. A few…

Learn more