Zamara is a planetary exchange student (think Erasmus, but further away) from Liquaria. She is also the first Liquarian to leave the planet for an exchange! Earth is so different from her planet – she had never heard of such strange concepts as “war” and “gender” but she is slowly learning how humans work. Although Liquarians do not distinguish different genders, Zamara has decided to identify as female during her stay on planet Earth. She is bursting with curiosity to understand everything she possibly can about her human friends in Luxembourg. This can sometimes get her into trouble when chasing her best dog friend Yso.
Yso (pronounced why-so?), Zamara’s faithful companion, is as adventurous as our dogs on Earth – but when he eats (Yso has decided to identify as male) something he shouldn’t, we see his inner workings! He can also change shape and turn to liquid when he wants! Cool, right? It would be, if he didn’t keep running off all the time and slipping through cracks – causing Zamara to chase him all around the University!
Zamara & Yso - To New Horizons
Zamara & Yso's Space Odyssey

Creative Commons (CC) BY-ND 4.0

© University of Luxembourg



Valérie Minelli is a Luxembourgish cartoonist, living in Germany. She writes and draws the international webcomic “Mrs.Frollein“, which hopefully brings some love and joy to her readers. For DESCOM she drew all the portraits, designed Zamara and Yso, their comic as well as the cover of this comic booklet. When she’s not busy creating comics, Minelli loves to draw illustrations, especially for children’s books, or is busy fangirling about whatever band she likes the most at the moment.

Saarbrücken, Germany

Artistic Focus
Slice of life webcomics


Contributions to LUX:plorations:
Zamara & Yso – To New Horizons
Design Zamara & Yso
Cover Illustrations

Why did you participate in LUX:plorations?
“I sometimes feel that Luxembourg isn’t using its full comic potential. So whenever I hear about a comic project, I gladly join in!”

What did you like most about LUX:plorations?
“The best thing was seeing the characters I created, being drawn by all the amazing artists in their own unique styles!”

What was the biggest challenge for you?
“The biggest challenge was definitely drawing the portraits of the PhD Students and the comic artists. Making people recognize themselves while using my very simplistic drawing style is always a big challenge. I hope I did them all justice and they liked it. :)”



in collaboration with Veronika Mischitz, Serge Haan, Bruno Teheux, Nicole Paschek and Oliver Glassl


Jessica Burton is a researcher at the Luxembourg Centre for Contemporary and Digital History (C2DH), working on the relationship between European comic transfers in the 1960s within the Popkult60 project. She previously worked as a comic editor for Titan Comics, on titles such as Doctor Who, before embarking on her PhD. She is a mentor for LUX:plorations, wrote the comics “What is a Phd?” as well as “Zamara & Yso’s Space Odyssey” and teaches classes on comics history at the University.

Research Focus
Comics, History, Cross-cultural Transfers, Popular Culture


Contributions to LUX:plorations:
What Is a PhD?
Zamara & Yso’s Space Odissey
It’s About Time!
One Ome To Rule Them All
The Future Is Now
Beware the Eye in the Sky
Becoming an Agent of Change
Chronicles from Platform 6
Inside the Solar Cell
Microglia: Guardians of the Brain?

Why did you participate in LUX:plorations?
“I truly believe in the power of comics to inform and educate, so jumped at the chance to help fellow doctoral candidates learn how to tell their research through comics form.”

What did you like most about LUX:plorations?
“Watching the doctoral candidates work on their ideas and seeing them engage with the artists for an amazing end product.”

What was the biggest challenge for you?
“Finding the balance between suggesting ideas and allowing participants maximum creativity.”

To be continued

Find out more about Zamara and Yso in Volume 3 of LUX:plorations!