The International Comic Salon of Erlangen, the most prestigious comics festival of the German language, will take place this year from May 31st until June 3rd. And even though the beating heart of the festival is a fair with no less than 200 publishers and more than 500 creators, it also presents a number of pretty interesting exhibitions.
The main show, Zeich(n)en der Zeit, focuses on the different types of non-fiction comics and comic journalism that have sprung up of late. The show includes work by pioneer Joe Sacco, but also Guy Delisle, Sarah Glidden and Germany’s own Ulli Lust and Olivier Kugler (one of the masters of the annotated image). A second exhibition may predominantly appeal to a German audience, as it showcases the work of the German topical cartoonists duo Greser Und Lenz (with some 350 original works of art). French formalist Marc-Antoine Mathieu has cobbled together a number of multimedia installations that brings his fairly intricate, but never not intelligent, works to life, and in a final show, Canadian writer and artist Jeff Lemire is put in the spotlight as one of those rare cartoonists who work in popular mainstream comics as well as literary graphic novels.
On the evening of Friday, June 1st, the Salon also hosts the Max Und Moritz Gala, a glitzy do during which the Max Und Moritz Preis is awarded to one of 25 nominees from around the globe (including Guy Delisle’s haunting Hostage and Lewis Trondheim and Stéphane Oiry’s excellent Maggy Garrison, but also quite a number of manga and the most recent books by Germany’s mainstays Ralf König and Reinhard Kleist). A special prize will be awarded to Valérian artist Jean-Claude Mézières for his entire body of work.
All in all, a nice little programme to spend the weekend with. If you happen to be in the South of Germany in a month, you may want to spend a day in this temporary Comic Welt.