Année de la BD
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2020, the year of the comic

  • Monde
1 February 2020
Graphic novel
The “9th art”, a new cultural frontier? From graphic novels to children’s comics, French manga and beyond, French comics are experiencing a renewed artistic energy driven by the diversity of forms and genres.

The so-called “9th art” explores all types of subjects, from the Guide du zizi sexuel (“A Guide to your Willy”) by Titeuf to Culottées (“Cheeky Women”) by Pénélope Bagieu, from a childhood in Mosul in Coquelicots d’Irak (“Poppies of Iraq”) to life in North Korea in Guy Delisle's Pyongyang. In France, comics deal with today's world. They are translated and presented in museums, inspiring cartoons, video games and digital creations and area powerful vector for art and culture from the Francophone world. They have an enormous potential for expansion into global markets.

On the occasion of 2020, the year of the Comic, the Institut français and the French cultural network abroad are shining a spotlight on an in-depth exploration of this “9thart”. Exhibitions focused on remarkable authors and works, a broad overview of the French comic revival with the National Publisher’s Union, film and cartoon screenings, including Alone (“Seuls”) by David Moreau and Bécassine! by Bruno Podalydès, suggestions for their use in teaching French as a foreign language, etc.: in 2020, the Institut français is offering the network a wide range of suggestions and content – mostly free of charge. A selection of digital works thus presents the new faces and uses of comics which are the source of the singular richness of the French industry.

In June 2020, the Institut français is offering a dual training programme for agents from the network and exchanges with professionals from the global comic scene through an International Comic Focus event at the International Centre for Comics and the Image in Angouleme and at the Lyon Comics festival.