China, guest of honour at the 30th International Comic Fair in Barcelona
The People's Republic of China is this year’s special guest at the 30th edition of the Barcelona International Comic Fair, which runs from May 3rd to 6th at the Fira de Barcelona. An exhibition will showcase the most important works in the history of Chinese comics. Furthermore, this edition is turning the spotlight on robots, dedicating its main exhibition both to entertaining and exploring the relationship between robots and comics, cinema and literature.
Barcelona (ACN).- The Barcelona International Comic Fair has consolidated itself as one of the sector’s largest events in the world. The People's Republic of China is the guest of honour at the 30th edition of the Barcelona International Comic Fair. The convention opened its doors this Thursday and will run until May 6th at the Fira de Barcelona. An important Chinese delegation made up of various government representatives, entrepreneurs in the world of comics and Chinese artists will visit the event. In addition, an exhibition dedicated to the history of Chinese comics is aiming to show the most important works of Chinese creators through pictures, books, magazines, e-books and videos. Furthermore, the 30th edition of the Barcelona’s Comic Fair will be turning the spotlight on robots dedicating its main exhibition both to entertaining and exploring the relationship between robots and comics, cinema and literature. Besides, there is a large list of recognised international authors such as Go Nagai, the creator of Mazinger Z; Milo Manara, one of the greatest masters of European comics; Guy Delisle, author of Pyongyang; Paul Cornell, British screenwriter for the Doctor Who series; and Scott Snyder, screenwriter for the new Batman series and The Swamp Thing.
Barcelona’s International Comic Fair is organised by the Federation of Professional Comic Institutions (FICOMIC), which is taking the opportunity to celebrate its 30th anniversary by presenting an attractive programme. The fair is hosting exhibitions and participations by recognised authors from the international and national comic field, as well as many other cultural and entertainment activities.
The development of Chinese comics
Ficomic reached an agreement with the Department of Culture, Radio and Television of the Government of Tianjin Binhai, one of China’s main economic areas, to participate in the event.
According to the organisers, Chinese comics have evolved as a cultural industry over the last thirty years, strongly supported by the Chinese government, especially because the Ministry of Culture has aided both artists and publishers. In addition, they have organised exhibitions, events and promotional activities with a global market insight and learning from international experience.
From the point of view of art, the Chinese comic draws on the aesthetic sources of the country’s traditional arts, as well as the idiosyncrasies of its culture, while the authors are able to lend it a personality. Many Chinese authors enjoy great popularity at home and it is quite common for the most successful artists to reach sales of 2 million copies.
Four important Chinese artists will take part in the Comic Fair. These include Chen Weidong, screenwriter, theorist and creator of Tianjin Creator World Comic. Also taking part is Benjamin Zhang Bin, a leading figure in illustration work and the author of various covers for Marvel. Another artist in Barcelona is Lotulist, a young Chinese illustrator specialised in traditions, with motifs such as dragons. Although she was inspired by history, she has developed her own style, which has attracted a modern day audience. Finally, Andy Chen, creator of K-ID Studio, is a specialist in comics and illustrations and known for his special sense of humour, with an authentic Beijing style.
More international and national guests
The fair will also present exhibitions dedicated to the winners of last year’s Comic Fair, such as the Main Prize for 2011 won by Jordi Longarón or Paco Roca, who won the prize for best script last year with L’hivern del dibuixant (The Cartoonist’s winter).
The creator of Mazinger Z to attend the fair
There is a large list of recognised international authors such as Go Nagai, the creator of Mazinger Z, the legendary robot with rocket fists who is celebrating his 40th birthday. Also coming is Milo Manara, one of the greatest masters of European comics; Guy Delisle, author of Pyongyang; Paul Cornell, British screenwriter for the Doctor Who series; Scott Snyder, screenwriter for the new Batman series and The Swamp Thing; Rags Morales, the popular cartoonist of Crisis de Identidad (Identity crisis) and illustrator for the relaunched Action Comics and finally, the brilliant Sergio Aragonés of MAD magazine.
Robots will take over the fair
The 30th edition of the Barcelona International Comic Fair will be turning the spotlight on robots dedicating its main exhibition both to entertaining and exploring the relationship between robots and comics, cinema and literature. The visitor will be able to interact with robots as well. This activity has been possible thanks to the collaboration of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC).
The exhibition will show famous robots born out of comics, such as Mazinger Z, the Transformers, Arale from Dr Slump and Astroboy. It will have also a section devoted to the robots from the Star Wars universe entitled Droids from the Galaxies, as well as educational areas and an activities programme that include robotics workshops and classes on how to draw robots.
A celebration in style
This year’s Comic Fair has prepared more surprises. Although the normal ticket costs €6, to celebrate its 30th anniversary all visitors who will turn 30 this year (born in 1982) will have free entry. In addition, on the occasion of the 50th anniversary of Spiderman, there will be a show dedicated to this popular superhero.