The Lakes International Comic Art Festival has announced its involvement in the Comic Art Europe project, working with the Lyon BD Festival in France, the Escola JOSO in Spain and the Belgium Comics Centre.
Comic Art Europe is an international pilot project bringing together 4 European organisations promoting and championing the power of Comics and Graphic Novels.
Comic Art Europe is led by Lyon BD Festival and includes a higher education establishment, the Joso Comics School in Spain, a museum, The Belgium Comics Centre, as well as the Lakes International Comic Art Festival.
The project aims to strengthen the comic book sector in Europe by experimenting with collaborative working methods. It promotes the transnational mobility of artworks, workers and creators and prefigures a European comics community capable of positioning creators and organisations at a European level, challenging the historical dominance of the American and Japanese giants.
Comic Art Europe will include professional training (summer camps and residencies), creative assistance (grants), dissemination of results in Europe and outside Europe (European comic book catalogue, large-scale dissemination channels) and research about the transformational power of comics (in particular through literacy workshops with comics).
This project, supported by the European Commission, runs until 31st December 2023. Both EU and UK creators can apply to be involved.
“We’re delighted to have the opportunity to broaden our international partnerships with our involvement in Comic Art Europe,” says LICAF Director Julie Tait. “International cooperation in the arts is all the more important during these difficult times, and we’re looking forward to working closely with project partners in 2021.”
The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is the only one of its kind in the UK, centred on events and comics projects brought to you from one of the country’s most beautiful areas – the English Lake District, in the market town of Kendal.
Modelled on European-style festivals, such as Angoulême in France, the annual Festival usually takes over the whole town for a weekend of comic art every October – but is going virtual in 2020 with LICAF LIVE.
The Festival’s aim is to celebrate the whole spectrum of comic art, inspiring existing comic art fans and creators and, it hopes, generating new audiences and creators too. It invests in creators through a commissioning programme and has an emphasis on developing international collaborations.
Since 2006, the Lyon BD Festival has continued to develop and welcome authors to the metropolis of Lyon. The first such event on the Croix-Rousse plateau, the Festival quickly took over the Palais de la Bourse, then the entire peninsula, bringing together more than 200 authors in the city’s largest cultural institutions.
For a few years now, Lyon BD has crossed borders and developed partnerships across the four corners of the world, to develop ambitious projects, original creations, and take an international perspective on comics.
Founded with the desire to give the city a great comic book festival, Lyon BD Festival is today one of the unmissable events of the 9th art by bringing together more than 270 artists and 80,000 visitors in 2018.
José Solana, a cartoonist with a long professional career that includes work for magazines published Editorial Bruguera and publications such as Dicen y Lecturas, founded the Escola JOSO in Barcelona in 1982.
Until then, apart from some correspondence courses, there had never been a school in Spain that specialised in teaching the technique of comics.
Over three decades later, JOSO has trained nearly 10,000 students, offering a wide range of courses, both in comics and other artistic disciplines, and has been present in classrooms, schools, civic centres and many leisure events with its contests, workshops. It offers teachers who include some of the best professionals in the world of comics, design, illustration or 3D animation.
A pioneer in the teaching of comics, the school has also adapted to the changing needs of the visual and entertainment industry, training high-level professionals thanks to the quality of its technicians and teachers. It also offers courses in design, digital creation, 3D animation, web design, manga, illustration and tuning, among others.
A non-profit organisation, the Belgian Comic Strip Centre project was created in 1984. It is a private initiative, composed of French-speaking and Dutch-speaking members, half originating from the comic strips world or from professional associations of comic strip artists.
The Belgian Comic Strip Centre’s aims are twofold: to promote the comic strip as a valuable cultural medium and to maintain the architectural masterpiece which it is housed in.
Located in the heart of Brussels, in a majestic Art Nouveau building created by Victor Horta in 1906, the Belgian Comic Strip Centre opened its doors to the public on 6th October 1989. This impressive museum quickly became one of the main attractions in Brussels, today attracting more than 200,000 visitors, who visit to explore both its permanent and temporary exhibitions.
• Lakes International Comic Art Festival 2021: 15th – 17th October 2021
• Lakes International Comic Art Festival: www.comicartfestival.com
• LyonBD: www.lyonbd.com
• Escola JOSO: escolajoso.es
• Belgium Comic Centre: www.comicscenter.net