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Spain will participate for the first time in the San Diego Comic-Con 2023

Spain will participate for the first time in the San Diego Comic-Con 2023

The San Diego Comic-Con 2023 begins on July 20 in the U.S. city of San Diego.

The Ministry of Culture and Sport, through the Directorate General of Books, Comics and Reading, is participating for the first time in the San Diego Comic-Con 2023, one of the most consolidated specialized comic fairs in the sector. The meeting, which will last four days, begins on July 20 in the U.S. city of San Diego.

The aim of Spain’s institutional presence at this convention is to make the comics industry visible and highlight it. To this end, two professional panels have been designed with the participation of national authors with special relevance in the sector and, specifically, in the North American market.

Aneke, Laura Pérez and Paco Sordo (National Comic Award 2022) will talk about the history, richness, diversity and presence of Spanish comics in the U.S. industry, moderated by Marta Agüero. Meanwhile, Belén Ortega, Pepe Larraz and Álvaro Martínez Bueno (Eisner Award 2022 and nominated again this year in two categories) will talk about their careers, achievements and personal experience in one of the largest comic markets in the world, the United States, in a conversation moderated by Esther Claudio.

In addition, the General Directorate of Books, Comics and Reading will have a stand offering information on the activities carried out by the Ministry of Culture and Sport, including grants for the promotion of translation into foreign languages. Also on display will be a collection of books by the participating authors, a sample of outstanding comic publications in Spain in all the languages of the State and works by the comic artist Carlos Pacheco, who died in 2022 and is considered the most prestigious national cartoonist to have worked in the U.S. industry.

The Spanish participation has counted with the collaboration of the researcher Elisa McCausland and the professor of the University of Alcalá Kiko Sáez, who will participate, together with the professor of the Complutense University of Madrid Fernando Ángel Moreno, in the Comic Arts Conference, an academic meeting that takes place every year coinciding with the Comic-Con.

Promoting comics

With its participation in this fair, the Ministry of Culture and Sport follows the line initiated in April with the change of name of the ‘Dirección General del Libro y Fomento de la Lectura’ to ‘Dirección General del Libro, del Cómic y de la Lectura’. The aim is to make visible and facilitate the public’s perception of the singularity of this medium within the general book ecosystem.

The Spanish presence in San Diego takes place just a few months after the celebration of the first Comic and Comic Book Day, on March 17, following the agreement reached in July 2022 by the Council of Ministers. The declaration recognizes the value of comics and comics, the weight of its history and its importance in the current context, its diversity, creativity and quality. It also aims to show effective support for the sector by recognizing the role of its professionals in social and cultural life, attracting new readers.

Internationalization of Spanish authors

The Ministry of Culture and Sport thus continues to promote the internationalization of Spanish authors following the success of its participation as guest of honor at the Calcutta Book Fair in 2023, as well as at the Frankfurt Book Fair and the Ljubljana Book Fair (Slovenia) in 2022. This internationalization strategy will continue, always hand in hand with the sector, with the participation as guest of honor at the upcoming book fairs of Guadalajara (Mexico) in 2024 and Bogota (Colombia) in 2025.

Text and photography: Ministry of Culture and Sports

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