Kendal, 1st April 2016: Not an April Fool’s hoax! Not a dream! The Lakes International Comic Art Festival is delighted to reveal this year’s Festival art by top artist Ken Niimura – who is also one of the lead guests at the event (14th-16th October).

Winner of the Golden Prize in the 5th International Manga Award and nominated to the Eisner and Eagle Award for his work in I Kill Giants (2009), Ken Niimura is also the author of the illustration book Zero (2010), the short story collection Traveling (2014) and Henshin (2014), published by Shogakukan in Japan.

He currently lives and works in Tokyo and recent work includes a strip for DC’s Gotham Academy #16, “Boring Sundays”.

“It’s my first time there, so I’m already crossing my fingers to have good weather and go to see the Lakes,” says Ken.

“If it rains though, I hope I’ll manage to get a cosy and warm table with nice views inside a pub.

“Feel free to come and say hi – we can draw something together! Or talk about comics! Or even just chill and enjoy the views.”

In addition to his appearance at the Festival, there will be an exhibition of Ken’s work, alongside an exhibition of the work of five rising stars from Japan which he is curating.

“He’ll be doing lots at the Festival to exploit his diverse talents,” enthuses director Julie Tait.

Ken will be joining previously announced guests Joe Kelly (I Kill Giants, Deadpool), Bryan Lee O’Malley (Scott Pilgrim, Seconds), 2000AD‘s Mick McMahon and Benoit Peeters – Britain’s first Professor of Graphic Fiction and Comic Art, at Lancaster University – for this year’s prestigious event.

Many more international and British comic creators will be announced over the coming weeks, joining a host of writers, artists, publishers and retailers for a long weekend in the Lakes crammed with panels, exhibitions, children’s events and other activities. The town will be entirely given over to comics, with business owners lining up to support the Festival’s famous “Windows Trail”, giving over store front space to display comics art created by artists and local groups and school children.

The October weekend is just one of a number of comics projects from the Festival on its way this year, with the world premiere performance of Black Dog – the Dreams of Paul Nash by Dave McKean already announced, taking place at Kendal Town Hall on 28th May.