Angoulême does not merely tolerate the Festival, does not even give it the grudging welcome accorded to an event which must be encouraged to continue to bring hundreds of thousands of tourists to the town in the off-season. The city has embraced the Festival with every sign of genuine enthusiasm, getting into the spirit of things and describing itself as not only "la ville de la BD" (comics city) but also "la ville de la BD dans la ville" (the city of comics in the city).
In 2003, Angoulême celebrated the 30th anniversary of the Festival by renaming its main street; the former rue Marengo became rue Hergé, in tribute to the creator of Tintin. Many of the street signs are in the shape of a stylised speech balloon.
Not to mention the murals. There has been a continuing programme of adorning the walls of the city with murals designed for their specific locations by major comics artists: take a virtual tour (in French) or come for a stroll...
Click the thumbnail to see a larger image.
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