The Belgian Passport - An Out of the Ordinary Passport



© CBBD/Daniel Fouss © Dupuis, 2021 © 2021 – www.atomium.be – SOFAM

BKK Comics Art Festival aims to shine a light on Thailand’s rich comic book culture. In the framework of the Festival, the Embassy of the Kingdom of Belgium in Bangkok is very happy to present an exhibition about the new Belgian passport, highlighting the strong role of Belgian artists in the history of comic strips. The Festival, including the Belgian exhibition, will take place on the 5th Floor of the Bangkok Art and Culture Center, from the 10th to 22nd of May 2022. You will find all the details about the Festival in the press release of BKK Comics in annex. 

Belgium was the main driving force of global comic strips production from the end of the Second World War to the mid-70's. The history of comics in Belgium didn’t start with the famous reporter Tintin. His author Hergé had already a solid basis in Belgium to rest his art on, but he was the first to publish full comic books as we know them today. Tintin – published for the first time in 1929 - remains until today an essential cornerstone of the Belgian comics history and probably the most famous Belgian.  

The new Belgian passport, unveiled by the Deputy Prime Minister and Minister of Foreign Affairs Sophie Wilmès on January 27 2022, tells the story of this popular art, also called “the 9th art”, in which Belgium played an essential role. Tintin, The Smurfs, Blake and Mortimer, Spirou and Fantasio, the Marsupilami, Largo Winch and many more are inviting you not only to travel around the world but also to discover one of the jewels of our culture. The passport is a real immersion in the comic strips’ world. From the first page to the last, even the page numbers appear in a comic-style bubble!  

© CBBD/Daniel Fouss © Erven Bob Mau © Editions Blake & Mortimer / Studio Jacobs, 2021

It goes without saying that the new passport is also more secure thanks to new security and personalization techniques. As Deputy Prime Minister Wilmes said “The Belgian passport is one of the best in the world, it is a source of pride for us, but also an object of desire for counterfeiters. This is why we are constantly working to improve its security.”

For a sneak preview of the new Belgian passport click on the following link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XiexwlLvvyk 

As one medium summarized it at the time of the launch, “Belgium has now the coolest passport in the world!”. Come and discover it at the BKK Comics Art Festival. 

At the Festival, you will also learn about the history of the Thai comics with a lecture given by the Belgian University lecturer Nicolas Verstappen, lecturer and comics scholar, author of the book “The Art of Thai comics. A Century of Strips and Stripes”. 

Do you want to learn more about the Festival, the unique Belgian passport and the history of Thai comics? Do you want to learn about the links between Belgian and Thai comics art?  

© CBBD/Daniel Fouss © Hergé-Moulinsart 2021