14 Oct 2022

Following the success of the first Bologna Grand Tour of the world’s top book fairs in 2021, we’re now starting out on a new world tour. Developed with the support and collaboration of ITA – The Italian Trade Agency promoting Italian companies abroad and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and International Cooperation, the 2022 Grand Tour aims to strengthen Bologna Fair’s global reach, promoting new international publishing opportunities. It also kicks off celebrations to mark the 60th Bologna Children’s Book Fair, which, together with its brand extension BolognaBookPlus (BBPlus) – general adult trade publishing and developed in partnership the Italian Publishers’ Association (AIE) – and Bologna Licensing Trade Fair/ Kids, will be held in Bologna from 6 to 9 March 2023.

The Tour begins at the Frankfurt Book Fair (19 – 23 October), moving on the Sharjah International Book Fair (2-13 November), followed by the Salon du Livre de Montreal (23-27 November) and finally, to the Feria Internacional del Libro de Guadalajara (26 November – 4 December).

In Frankfurt (Hall 4.1, stand H26), BCBF will be presenting what’s in store for 2023. First off, the Literary Agents Centre – traditionally reserved for children’s book agents – now becomes a new Bologna Rights Centre, designed together with BolognaBookPlus, to include general trade publishing agents and rights professionals of all exhibiting publishers.

Our booth will also host two exhibitions.

Curated by Accademia Drosselmeier, Out of Silence. Yesterday, today, tomorrow, narrating through wordless books brings together a series of extraordinary Italian wordless story books, one of the most dynamic genres in children’s publishing. 39 wordless picture books by both internationally renowned artists and Italy’s youngest generation of authors and illustrators, show how silent books reach beyond language barriers to children of all ages, allowing them to tell their own stories of what they see, developing creativity and an ability to read the world.

The second exhibition, A glimpse at Italian illustration. A selection from the Bologna Illustrators Exhibition, features 20 of the most outstanding Italian artists selected for the Bologna Illustrators Exhibition in recent years, who have gone on to international careers.

Guided tours of the exhibition by Grazia Gotti of Bologna’s Accademia Drosselmeier, and illustrator and critic Anna Castagnoli, a former Illustrators Exhibition juror, have been organised for: 19 and 20 October at 4 p.m., and 11 a.m. on 21 October at the BCBF booth.

Also on show, and organised together with Bologna Licensing Trade Fair/Kids, are two examples of licensing excellence in children’s book publishing, created entirely in Italy: an illustration that has become an educational game, and a book that led to an animation film. The fertile exchange in recent years between the publishing industry and the world of educational games has led to the creation of several outstanding products. In Frankfurt, two examples of this transition will be on show: the educational game based on an illustration by Giulia Orecchia – awarded at the Toys Awards as Best Italian Game of 2022 -, and the animated film based on the acclaimed novel Nel Mare ci sono i coccodrilli by Fabio Geda (translated into more than 30 languages) that director Rosalba Vitellaro and screenwriter Alessandra Viola adapted using illustrations by Annalisa Corsi, and which won the Best Short Film Award at the Giffoni Film Festival. The TV special will in turn become a book, this time inspired by the cartoon images.

Giulia Orecchia, Rosalba Vitellaro and Alessandra Viola will facilitate a series of informal meetings, “A coffee with” to discuss how the publishing industry can work more closely with the licensing sector to create top-of-the-range products. Roberto and Alessandra will be on hand on 19 October at 3.00 p.m., while Giulia Orecchia will be present on 20 October at 3.00 p.m. and on 21 October at 12.00 a.m.

The meeting BolognaBookPlus: A Briefing. Calling All General Trade Publishers! – 19 October at 2 p.m. – will detail BBPlus’ 2023 programme and the many exhibition and training opportunities on offer.

The international book community is invited to the Bologna Grand Tour’s networking party on the first day of Frankfurter Buchmesse (19 October, 5.30 pm) at the Italy booth (Hall 4.1, stand F31) to celebrate the many new features planned for BCBF’s 60th anniversary, and hear the announcement of the inaugural BolognaBookPlus Market of Honour.

For further information, please click here.