The First Art Newspaper on the Net   Established in 1996 United States Tuesday, September 17, 2019

Top comics festival honours Charlie Hebdo in France
Jean-Claude Menu, president of the Friends of Charlie association, receives a special Grand Prix award honouring late French cartoonists Cabu, Wolinski, Charb, Tignous and Honore who were killed during an attack on the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo on January 7. AFP PHOTO / PIERRE DUFFOUR.

By: Laurence Benhamou

ANGOULÊME (AFP).- One of the world's leading comics festivals opened in France on Thursday under tight security as it dedicated this year's event to the murdered cartoonists of Charlie Hebdo.

The festival in the southwestern town of Angouleme also created a first when it gave its coveted Grand Prix lifetime achievement award to a manga artist, with Japan's Katsuhiro Otomo scooping the prize.

This year's guests -- including some of the biggest names in comics and graphic novels from around the world -- found themselves under unprecedented protection after the attacks on satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo in Paris on January 7 that left 12 dead.

"The 2015 festival will be a time for remembering but we also want to show that life goes on," festival director Franck Bondoux said.

Graphic novel writers, press cartoonists and animators were among the stars in attendance at the festival, which this year features special displays on Asian cartoons and Jack Kirby, creator of "Captain America", "Hulk" and the "X-Men".

Spirit of Charlie 
Comic books are hugely popular in France, with 35 million sold in the country last year.

But three weeks on from the attacks in Paris, it was "the spirit of Charlie" that weighed heaviest on this 42nd edition of the festival.

A number of special commemorations were planned, including the inauguration of a new "Charlie Award for Freedom of Expression".

The prize will this year go to the cartoonists killed in the assault on the magazine, whose past caricatures of Prophet Mohammed have sparked controversy and were cited by the attackers as the reason for their killing spree.

In the future, the prize will be awarded to artists fighting for free speech around the world.

The festival organisers also collected over a thousand contributions from artists around the world in homage to Charlie Hebdo and a special album entitled "Comics are Charlie" was being prepared with the help of 173 well-known cartoonists.

Past front pages from the magazine were plastered all over the town in the style of an electoral campaign.

And an exhibition gathering together documents and drawings by Charlie Hebdo's cartoonists -- dead and alive -- attracted the crowds.

Priests, rabbis, the pope, imams, presidents, left-wing and right-wing politicians. Everyone was a target for satire in cartoons that denounced issues as serious as homophobia, paedophilia or racism.

"Their death had an awful impact on the world of cartoonists. Some called me in tears. For many, they were role models," Jean-Pierre Mercier, one of the managers of the exhibition, said.

Japan in the limelight
On Thursday night, Japan's Otomo, creator of the cult manga series Akira, was awarded the Grand Prix, which last year went to "Calvin and Hobbes" creator Bill Watterson.

Set in a post-apocalyptic Tokyo built on the ashes of a city that was destroyed by a blast that triggered World War III, the Akira series are known the world over.

The awarding of the prize to Otomo highlights the importance of mangas in France, where they represent a quarter of all comic book sales.

The festival also awarded a special Grand Prix to the Charlie Hebdo cartoonists killed in the attack -- Cabu, Wolinski, Charb, Tignous and Honore.

Among other stars in attendance was godfather of manga Jiro Taniguchi, presenting a retrospective in Europe for the first time.

In an interview with AFP before he left Japan for Angouleme, Taniguchi said he constantly had in mind the impact his drawings may have on others.

"The human being is an animal for whom the visual sense reacts first, and words and analysis come after," he said in his little Tokyo workshop.

"I know the expressive power of drawings and their risks, which is why I always did my utmost to handle them with precaution by always keeping in mind the impact that my story and my way of drawing may have on certain people."

© 1994-2015 Agence France-Presse

Today's News

January 30, 2015

Outcry in UK as Natural History Museum's Dippy goes the way of the dinosaurs

Seattle Art Museum and Clark Art Institute wager major works of art on Super Bowl XLIX

Exhibition recognises Alan Cristea's significant contribution to print publishing

Rediscovered preparatory work for one of Constable's most celebrated masterpieces soars to $5.2 million

The Story of Disneyland: Huge collection goes to auction celebrating 60 years of Disneyland

Banksy prints star as Bonhams Contemporary Auction fetches over £1 million

Exhibition of new paintings by Luc Tuymans opens at David Zwirner London

Hauser & Wirth to represent Mike Kelley Foundation for the Arts worldwide

Exhibition of recent photographs by Vera Lutter opens at Gagosian Gallery in New York

Eli Wilner & Company framed a Benjamin-Constant for the Montreal Museum of Fine Arts

Birmingham Museum of Art presents paintings by Dutch and Flemish masters

Broad Art Museum at Michigan State University appoints Caitlin Doherty as Curator

Exhibition of work by Harold "Doc" Edgerton opens at Sikkema Jenkins & Co.

Exhibition at Yancey Richardson presents a selection of works by Finnish photographer Esko Männikkö

Exhibition explores the relationship artists have with their own image

Kirsty Buchanan named new Curator for The Rockwell Museum

'Santu Mofokeng: A Metaphorical Biography' opens at The Walther Collection Project Space

A focus on quality keeps sales on track at London Art Fair 2015

Top comics festival honours Charlie Hebdo in France

First exhibition devoted to Kazuo Shiraga in juxtaposition with Satoru Hoshino opens at Dominique Lévy

Nanette Jacomijn Snoep appointed new Director of the State Ethnographic Collections of Saxony

Lamplighters keep London's history burning

Exhibition of works by Mark Leckey opens at Haus der Kunst

Most Popular Last Seven Days

1.- Holocaust 'masterpiece' causes uproar at Venice film festival

2.- To be unveiled at Sotheby's: One of the greatest collections of Orientalist paintings ever assembled

3.- Bender Gallery features paintings by up and coming Chicago artist Michael Hedges

4.- Lévy Gorvy exhibits new and historic works by French master in his centenary year

5.- Artificial Intelligence as good as Mahler? Austrian orchestra performs symphony with twist

6.- Fascinating new exhibition explores enduring artistic bond between Scotland and Italy

7.- Exhibition explores the process of Japanese-style woodblock production

8.- Robert Frank, photographer of America's underbelly, dead at 94

9.- The truth behind the legend of patriot Paul Revere revealed in a new exhibition at New-York Historical Society

10.- Hitler bust found in cellar of French Senate

Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .


Ignacio Villarreal
(1941 - 2019)
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez

Royalville Communications, Inc
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
to a Mexican poet.

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site
Tell a Friend
Dear User, please complete the form below in order to recommend the Artdaily newsletter to someone you know.
Please complete all fields marked *.
Sending Mail
Sending Successful