On the occasion of the “year of comic books”, French authors and illustrators were supposed to tour North America in Spring 2020 – an event polarized by the comic festivals in the cities of New York, Quebec, Moncton, Toronto, Vancouver and Montreal. Because of the current COVID-19 pandemic the program is now going digital as #BD2020 is joining #CanCAF, the first-ever cross Canadian comics festival.
The “2020 Comic book” focus was initiated by the French Ministry of Culture, as a means to acknowledge and legitimize the creative turmoil which now characterizes the ninth art. French comics represent a particularly thriving area in an otherwise ailing book market, which makes them a key element in redefining a cultural policy abroad, all the more since the representatives of this artistic field are, for the most part, young and dynamic.
This new generation, which proves just as uncompromising and innovative as its predecessors – such illustrious figures as Goscinny, Hergé, Moebius or Gotlib – extends beyond the traditional Franco-Belgian borders to Switzerland, Quebec and North Africa: “the year of the comic” thus crowns the technical expertise and cultural vitality of the French-speaking world as a whole.
Consequently, the Services of cultural action and cooperation in Canada, Quebec and the United States have decided to collaborate in order to promote the specificity of the French comic-book in North America : seizing the opportunity of multiple comic festivals organized all across the North American territory – New York, Moncton, Halifax, Ottawa, Montreal, Quebec, Toronto, Vancouver – and now going digital, the cultural services have asked several French authors to create original content now broadcasted by the Canadian Comics Art Festivals.
This series of online events starts with VanCAF with the following authors: