A lineup of up-and-coming Taiwanese comic artists is set to awe visitors at the 47th Angoulême International Comics Festival taking place from Jan. 30 to Feb. 2 in western France, bringing their creative passion to one of Europe's largest comic festivals while expanding the foothold of the nation's comic culture worldwide.
In addition to Taiwanese comic artists Penpoint (筆頭) and NIN, who have been selected as the 2019-2020 artists-in-residence of La Cité internationale de la bande dessinée et de l'image in Angoulême, cartoonist Stellina Chen (陳筱涵), who is serving residency at bd BOUM Maison de la BD in Blois, will also attend the festival.
Moreover, the four featured artists who will be stationed at the Taiwan Pavilion are: Monday Recover (星期一回收日), winner of the Comic of the Year at Taiwan's 2019 Golden Comic Awards, illustrator and book cover designer Animo Chen (阿尼默), indie publisher-artist Gao Yan (高妍), and 2019 Golden Comic Best New Talent Wu Yu-shi (吳宇實).
Furthermore, Liu Chien-fan (劉倩帆) and Peng Jih-yun (彭日畇), who are respectively shortlisted by the Young Talents and #DrawMeComics contests at the prestigious festival, are also scheduled to appear at the event. Angoulême's #DrawMeComics competition is held exclusively on Instagram and open to all comic creators. The winners of both competitions will be announced on Jan. 30.
This year marks the ninth time that the Taiwan Pavilion is being showcased at the festival under different annual themes. The 2020 theme "Passion of Taiwan Comics" will see the pavilion unfold in three sections — with the first presenting the works of the four featured artists, and the second for recommended comic books and publishers.
The third section, a retrospective exhibition recounting significant events at Angoulême's Taiwan Pavilion from 2012 to 2020, is the highlight of this year's Taiwanese showcase. It also sets out to illuminate Taiwan's success in copyright negotiations by showcasing Taiwanese publications whose international copyrights were sold at previous editions of the festival.
Chen Ying-fang (陳瑩芳), director of the Ministry of Culture's Department of Humanities and Publications, said the Ministry has aspired to foster the development of Taiwan's comics industry in recent years through subsidy programs and projects that support Taiwanese participation in overseas residency projects as well as international exhibitions.
After the festival, an exhibition displaying Taiwan Pavilion's fruitful achievements from the last nine years will be held at the Taiwan Comic Base, the nation's first-ever comics headquarters in Taipei. Featured artists from over the years will also share their Angoulême experiences.
Held annually since 1974, the Angouleme International Comics Festival has become a highly respected event featuring exhibitions, fan meetups, and conferences. The four-day event is also notable for awarding prestigious prizes for comics.