Friday, March 01, 2013

Angoulême - part 2, or the French tour

There were two halfs of our trip to France. Going to the Festival at Angoulême was just the first one, and the second half was definetely the most different.

Using our lovely Parisian apartment as our home base, the Urban Comics crew sent us in a small signing tour around France: four cities in total, including Paris. Every day, we would wake up early, take a TGV train and cross the country to visit another city, give interviews to the local press and sign at a local bookstore, where we were always met with a mix of readers who had already read Daytripper and those who were discovering the book for the first time but, either out of a recommendation from the bookstore owner or out of their habit of going to signings.
France 2013 - Le Mans
It's incredible how every city in France appears to have a great bookstore specialized in Bande Dessinée and comics. We visited Bulle at Le Mans, which I think was the oldest one in our tour and was located in the oldest part of town, a beautiful medieval village near the remains of the wall built during Roman times. In Lyon, we visited Experience, a great bookstore with a ceiling filled with drawings from their visiting artists, a most distinguished collection from all around the world. We saw Craig Thompson's drawing, and Bannister's (he's from Lyon), Cyril Pedrosa's and so many more. Moebius also left his markings on that cave of wonders, and so did we.
France 2013 - Lyon
Nancy, the smallest city in our tour, had the biggest bookstore, La Parenthèse, with a lot of space for the readers to discover all kinds of comics, old and new. One room, where we did our drawings and met the public, was filled with great automates, those wonderful handmade dolls which, when you press a button, move by themselves in the most ingenious ways.
France 2013 - Nancy
In Paris, we visited two bookstores: Bulles en Tète, the newest in our trip, and Apo(K)lyps. Luckly, their were close to each other and we walked the distance from one another, but still that was our longest signing day, signing for three hours on the first and for almost the same time on the second.
France 2013 - Paris
We finished the last night of our tour with dinner with Pôl and François from Urban Comics at a great restaurant, eating well, drinking champagne, wine and talking about comics, past, present and future.

We don't know when, but this wasn't our last trip to France. This was the beginning of our french road. And our work has put us on this road and, if we continue to do good work, it's the work which will keep sending us across the globe. The work is the author's voice, the author's face. Our work is our passport.

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