Comics, interview with Paolo Gallinari, President of ANAFI

How has the world of comics changed over the years? Who are the fans? How will the Mostra del Fumetto take place at Fiere Reggio Emilia on Saturday 27th May? The interview with Paolo Gallinari, President Anafi (National Association of Friends of Comics and Illustration) explores what turns around a world mistakenly considered the prerogative of children. Quite the contrary. The most avid consumers of a sector with a timeless appeal are male adults.

Paolo, Saturday will take place the Mostra Mercato del Fumetto at Fiere Reggio Emilia, what will offer to the visitors ?

It simply offers the largest collection of collectible cartoon market in Italy, now almost unique in its kind, which is repeated twice a year in Reggio Emilia; rare books, precious magazines, collections that can not be found elsewhere, comics, but also figurines, movie posters, postcards, etc., all having the common denominator of the paper, which will not be eternal but in the meantime will last tens, or even hundreds of years, where modern technological supports must be renewed or risk cancellation after a few years. Or simply you can find that comic you miss.

What are the peculiarities of this year?

In particular, there will be as guest Sergio Tisselli, cartoonist and illustrator from Bologna, a pupil of Magnus; Tisselli will be available in the morning and early afternoon to sign two prints he has specially prepared for the occasion. At the same time, there will be a personal exhibition entitled L’Arte della Copertina, with several original comics pages.

In the afternoon there will be the award ceremony of the winners of the annual Referendum. What is it?

Every year, the members of Anafi (National Association of Friends of Comics and Illustration) vote the best of the previous year, choosing from five candidates in the style of Oscar, in six distinct categories: comic artist, screenwriter, complete author, essayist, initiative editorial, volume. On Saturday, at the Conference Hall of the Fair, the winners will be awarded, all leading exponents of the world of Italian comics, in the presence of a rich parterre of colleagues and fans.

How have the comics changed in the years?

On the one hand, comics became a powerful vehicle for communicating social, political and commercial messages, while on the other it suffered a strong contraction in the number of readers and therefore in sales, which saw the traditional newsstand less and less a driving element and showcase, even if alternative places and ways of fruition (comic books, online sites, self-promotions) find it difficult to impose themselves.

Who is the typical reader of comics?

Despite the classic myth of the comic book considered as “children’s stuff”, in reality the major consumers and comic book readers are adults, both male and not young. Young and very young, girls and women are a public largely to be conquered.