Between May 31st and June 1st, the third installment of the International Danish Comics Festival, Komiks.dk, will take place in Copenhagen. Its programme is broad and truly international in scope, with guests ranging from the French veterans Pierre Christin and Jean-Claude Mézières (Valerian) and a couple of the more interesting names in American mainstream comics, Duncan Fegredo (Hellboy) and Sean Phillips (Criminal), to such modern masters as David B. (Epileptic) and Martin tom Dieck (Hundert Ansichten der Speicherstadt). And just announced: two mangaka, Kouhei Nishino and Tsugumi Nishino (Cybermanga) — the first time Japanese cartoonists visit Denmark in an official context.
After the successful first festival, in 2004, this event quickly became THE comics event in Denmark, and the second time around only served to consolidate that position, despite a certain amount of criticism for lack of focus and critical attention to contemporary comics from certain parts of the comics community, including ourselves (ie. Rackham). This time around, the organisers have attempted to address the problems of the earlier festivals as best they could and the result is an impressive programme, remarkably inclusive, while still generally maintaining a high level of quality.
Full disclosure: yours truly is on the festival jury and will be participating in the programming. Still, don’t let that hinder you from going. It’s going to be a great time, and — I’m sure — proof that Danish comics culture is still alive, despite what one might otherwise think. I’m psyched already!