THE SMITHSONIAN and IDW Partner for History/Science-Inspired Comic Book Line

The Smithsonian Institution
Credit: Nate Powell

The Smithsonian Institution - yes, that Smithsonian, or at least its parent company Smithsonian Enterprises - has teamed with IDW Publishing to launch a line of all-ages graphic novels with historical and scientific themes.

The line kicks off with a series of young adult-focused OGNs titled Time Trials, based on an eponymous video series from the National Museum of American History, followed by a series of historical OGNs similar to IDW's March and They Called Us Enemy.

The line will also include both youth and adult coloring books. The promotional art for the partnership, seen here, is an image of the Smithsonioan Institution building by Nate Powell.

“The most energizing thing about working with the Smithsonian’s curators, researchers, and zookeepers is that these are not just experts in their fields: they’re storytellers,” says Chris Ryall, IDW’s President, Publisher, and CCO. “Together, we’ll use the unique power of comics to entertain, inspire, and educate readers of all ages about the wonders of history, science, technology, culture, and more.”

“We’re excited to work with the IDW team and share the full breadth of the Smithsonian’s extraordinary collections and research with readers around the world,” says Carol LeBlanc, President of Smithsonian Enterprises. “We can’t wait to see world-class writers and artists bring the Smithsonian mission to diverse audiences in innovative, accessible, and engaging new ways.”

“Comics can communicate complex ideas in the blink of an eye,” says Justin Eisinger, IDW’s Editorial Director, Graphic Novels & Collections. “As our art form becomes increasingly central to the work of educators and librarians, this program presents a unique and important opportunity to align IDW’s mission of quality graphic storytelling with the Smithsonian’s quest to share information with curious minds everywhere.”

“Award-winning books like March and They Called Us Enemy have demonstrated the massive potential of graphic nonfiction that’s infused with literary richness, visionary artwork, and personal passion,” says Leigh Walton, Editor and Marketing Director for IDW’s Top Shelf imprint. “With the brilliant minds at the Smithsonian, I’m thrilled to apply those same values to explore untold stories and new frontiers around the world and throughout the universe.”

The untitled line kicks off in Fall 2020.

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