Our main assets to become UNESCO's Creative City

1 Angoulême has always
loved literature
City of literary tradition since the chronicles of Adhémar de
Chabannes in the 11th century, through the royal family of
Valois-Angoulême in the Renaissance, or Jean-Louis Guez de Balzac
in the Great Century and Honoré de Balzac in the 19th century,
the comic strip continues this tradition to which it has breathed
new life for almost 50 years.
2 an ancient paper
Since the 16th century, Angoulême has been
an important paper house with a varied and
high-quality production of the letter paper with
the famous Angoulême vellum to cigarette paper.
3 a comic book festival
as a world reference
The International Comic Strip Festival (FIBD), linked in the territory
since 1974, with a worldwide record, is Angoulême's emblematic event.
In 2019, nearly 250,000 visitors, 2,000 authors, 1200 publishers
985 journalists make it the meeting place of the planet Comic Strip!
4 an eco-system that revolves
around the 9th Art
Since the creation of the FIBD, an ecosystem has been built around
the Charente River. Today, nearly 200 cartoonists have settled around
the city. 30 companies are directly linked to the Comic Strip (publishers,
authors' workshops, artists' collectives, distribution structures...) not
to mention the 75 companies dedicated to animation, digital and
multimedia. It is estimated that nearly 1,000 jobs are generated by
the cultural and creative industries.
5 An original urbanplanning
«Comic Strip»
Over time, comics have become entrenched in the territory: the former
industrial district on the banks of the Charente river has converted into
comics and media art and many urban development projects have emerged
such as the new circuit of the 28 painted walls, the façade of the Archives
signed by François Schuiten, the Goscinny obelisk in front of the railstation,
the statues of Lucien, Hergé, Corto Maltèse, the street signs in the shape
of phylactery, or the numerous comics illustrations on buses, bus
shelters, mailboxes and other "boxes" to read."
6 The Comic Strip
at the University
With its 12 high schools institutions, the Image Campus is one of the
major hubs of comics and media art training in Europe. The European
High School of Image (EESI) is the only one to train from the undergraduate
to the Doctorate on comics! Each year, 1200 students prepare one of the
thirty diplomas on offer. The Image Campus is part of a particularly dense
international network: Europe, Quebec and Montreal,
Guadalajara (Mexico), Dakar (Senegal), Hanoi (Vietnam)...
7 Culture accessible
to all
Angoulême has tools and devices to make comics accessible to as
many people as possible: the Alpha, the bran new media library, offers an
important collection to readers of all ages, the International City of Comics
and Image (CIBDI) is a unique place of diffusion, between museum and
cultural animator, between facilitator of innovation with the New Factory
and creation with the House of Authors. But it is also the Franquin
Space, the Angoulême Museums and Paper and the socio-cultural
centers in the neighborhoods...
8 The Comic Strip,
medium of social bonding
In Angoulême, the pedagogical use of the Comic Strip is a nationally
recognized specificity and has developed in schools from kindergarten
to high school allowing everyone to access cultural culture and practices
and Works. The school comic competition supported by UNESCO's
French National Commission involves more than 400 schools and
5,000 students from all over the world each year.
9 an opening to all the arts
(music, cinema and gastronomy)
Comics is not the only annual event in Angoulême :
Music: Métis Music (May), Piano en Valois (autumn),
Cinema: The Francophone Film Festival (August), Courant 3D (October),
Gastronomy: Gastronomades (June and November),
Literature: Angoulême Book Festival (December).
This gives Angoulême the nickname of the City of Festivals.


As a Creative City of Literature-ComicStrips, Angoulême envisages 9 proposalsfor developing the Ninth Art


Leading international discussions on Comic Art

Open at 2019 national comics meetings at the international


Sharing know-how on Comic Art

Supporting the development of events abroad, Network of Comic Strip Festivals


Developing hosting capacity for creation

Writers’ residencies, network of writers, assign grants of authors to facilitate the reception of authors…


Protecting creation on the international stage

International Market of Rights


Organising spatial planning of the city through Comic Art

Reinforce urban planning around the comic strip (concerted strategy, development of the image district, inclusion of comic strips in daily life…) and create an international prize for urban creation around the comic strip and implement the award-winning projects


Facilitating access to Comics-based university

Developing the reception of foreign students on the image campus and propose an UNESCO Chair comic in connection with the research Federation around the EESI, the CNAM and the University of Poitiers.


Defending women-led creation

Promoting the place of women in artistic creation (Residences, exhibitions, valorization of productions and awards of authors…)


Promoting creation and heritage with an international dimension

Develop co-productions of exhibitions, cross-residencies of authors, scientific co-operation…
Enhancing the international heritage of comics with UNESCO’s memory of the world programme in connection with Belgium, Asia and America


Shoring up social ties with young people through Comic Art

Exchange on pedagogical experiments centred on the comic as a social link (Resource Centre for artistic and cultural education, art and cultural education, culture bubble in schools, colleges and Heritage, project of establishment in the framework of a school grouping in sensitive urban area, competition of the school comics, establishments with option, internship of excellence comic, ESAT graphic arts…)
Fostering exchanges between schools and their openness to the UNESCO schools network
Sensitize young people to the preservation of cultural and natural heritage from comics and image with the international Odyssey project



The Mayor of Angoulême

Since it was founded in 1974, Angoulême’s International Comic Strip Festival (FIBD) has given rise to a whole new ecosystem in the conurbation, which is now a fully-fledged driver for socioeconomic and urban development. The city has transformed its sometimes struggling industrial economy into a predominantly tertiary activity grounded in visual arts-focused cultural industries.

The Visual Arts Campus has taken shape with 12 specialist graduate schools. An economic development centre, Magelis, has been set up to support and strengthen the growth of this industry. Specialist cultural facilities (such as the International Centre for Comic Strips and the Visual Arts, Musée de France accredited Comic Strip Museum or L’Alpha media library) have sprung up, and support schemes (including design grants, Centre for Writers, aid for corporate real estate, business incubators and more) now foster creativity and the creation of cultural businesses.

Urban planning projects take this new dimension into account (redevelopment of brownfield sites, repurposing the Saint-Cybard neighbourhood and Charente riverbanks for the visual arts, integration in the “Action Coeur de ville” national scheme for revitalising mid-sized city centres, street furniture, street signs, etc.).