It all started in 1999 with a Team of experts of African cultural heritage and contemporary creativity in search of new ways and ideas of showing Europe the richness of the contemporary African cultural environment. An environment that takes us far beyond the usual idea of Africa as just a continent in need of help, funds and assistance, to overcome the traditional stereotypes of wild safaris, touristic art and “tribal” communities.

With that in mind, Africa e Mediterraneo and Lai-momo – two organisations working on the research and development process of African contemporary cultural movements – decided to focus on one of the most expressive and globalised forms of art from recent decades: comics.

We then started to establish partnerships, involve African cartoonist, develop projects and share ideas that culminated in the “Africa e Mediterraneo Award for Best Unpublished Comic Strip by African author”, a Pan-African competition that in 6 editions between 2002 and 2015 helped to launch new authors and spread African comics worldwide with exhibitions in Bologna, New York, Brussels, Maputo and Dakar – to name just a few.


Physical Collection

As part of the numerous initiatives with African comics carried out over the years we have received, acquired and collected a large number of original comics, drawings and publications. The catalogue now consists of more than 2500 drawings originating from almost all African sub-Saharan countries and now represents one of the richest collections of African comics in the world.

The physical collection is stored in our Study Centre in Sasso Marconi (Italy) and is open to academics, students and experts who wish to view the original drawings for study and research purposes. If you wish to visit please email and request an appointment. We will respond to your request as soon as possible and arrange the visit.


Online Database

This capital of images, stories and thoughts – built thanks to the contribution of many African comics professionals – can be an important tool for studying and understanding Africa. We have decided to make it available online as we think it could be very helpful to scholars, academics or to people who are simply interested.

The online database that you find on this website contains most of the drawings found in the physical collection. Using it is relatively easy: just type a keyword into the search bar and you’ll get results containing that specific keyword. You can also refine your search by adding the author’s name or country under the section “filter”. We hope you enjoy it!



C. Cassiau-Haurie, “Chic Planète”, in P. Gaumier (ed.), Le dictionnaire mondial de la bande dessinée, Larousse, Paris 2010

C. Cassiau-Haurie, Îles en bulles, histoire de la bande dessinée dans l’Océan Indien, Centre du monde editions, île de la Réunion 2009

C. Cassiau-Haurie, Histoire de la bande dessinée congolaise, L’Harmattan, Paris 2010

C. Cassiau-Haurie, Histoire de la bande dessinée au Cameroun, L’Harmattan, Paris 2016

S. Federici, De la Jungle à l’Italie et retour. La diffusion de la bande dessinée populaire d’origine italienne au Congo, in D. Comberiati, P. Halen, R. Iounes-Vona (eds.), Des Italiens au Congo aux Congolais en Italie, forthcoming

J.P. Jacquemin, Bande dessinée africaine: masques, perruques, in «L’année de la bande dessinée», N. 10, 1986, pp. 185-192

P. Halen, Tintin, paradigme du héros colonial belge? (À propos de Tintin au Congo), in A. Soncini Fratta (ed.), Tintin, Hergé et la belgité, CLUEB Editrice, Bologna 1995, pp. 39-56

N. R. Hunt, Tintin and the Interruptions of Congolese Comics, in P. S. Landau, D. D. Kaspin (eds.), Images and Empires. Visuality in Colonial and Postcolonial Africa, University of California Press, Berkeley, Los Angeles, London 2002, pp. 90-123

S. Langevin (ed.), “BD d’Afrique. Dossier”, in «Africultures», n. 22, 2000, p. 90-123

J. A. Lent (ed.), Comic Art in Africa, Asia, Australia, and Latin America. A Comprehensive International Bibliography, Greenwood Press, Westport (Connecticut), London  1996

A. Mason, What’s So Funny? Under the Skin of South African Cartooning, Double Storey Books, Cape Town 2010

H. Mbiye Lumbala, Cases et bulles africaines. Introduction à la bande dessinée africaine francophone, Dalimen, Alger 2009

B. Mehta, P. Mukherji (eds.), Postcolonial Comics: Texts, Events, Identities, Routledge, London 2015

L. Pinhas, Éditer dans l’espace francophone, Alliance des éditeurs indépendants, Paris 2005

M. Repetti, Gulp!… un fumetto africano?, in S. Federici, A. Marchesini Reggiani (eds.), Matite Africane, Lai-momo, Sasso Marconi 2002, pp. 23-24

M. Repetti, African wave: specificity and cosmopolitanism in African comics, in «African Arts», vol. 40, n. 2, Summer 2007, pp. 16-35

M. Repetti, “Il fumetto africano, Dossier”, in «Africa e Mediterraneo», n. 37, 2001

M. Repetti, Ligne claire e inchiostri neri: il fumetto dell’africa francofona, in «Constellations francophones», Publifarum, n. 7, 2007

S. Riva, Rulli di tam-tam dalla torre di Babele. Storia della letteratura del Congo-Kinshasa, Milano : LED, 2000, chapter “Una letteratura per tutti“, pp. 331-332

R. Thierry, Le Marché du livre africain et ses dynamiques littéraires. Le cas du Cameroun, Presses Universitaires de Bordeaux, Pessac 2015

AA. VV., “La bande dessinée. Dossier”, in «Notre Librairie. Revue des littératures du Sud», n. 145, 2001