New Exhibit! Facing Feelings: The Art of Raina Telgemeier opens May 24 at the Billy Ireland

For Immediate Release: April 13, 2023

Media Contact:
Nancy J. Colvin

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum presents
Facing Feelings: The Art of Raina Telgemeier


(Columbus, OH) – The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum presents Facing Feelings: The Art of Raina Telgemeier May 24-Nov. 5. This retrospective exhibition showcases original artwork spanning over 20 years of Telgemeier’s career, including her graphic novels and earlier works.

Emotions are complicated, nuanced and messy. In comics and cartoon art, the link between emotion and expression has become an important visual language, as facial expressions can give us a clue into a character’s internal world. Facing Feelings explores how Telgemeier’s comics combine impeccable pacing and an approachable cartoon style with real-life experiences to carefully balance challenging emotional journeys with warmth and affirmation. Her work focuses on feelings, and relationships to drive the plot forward, resonating strongly with readers of all ages.

Telgemeier is the author and illustrator of the graphic novels Smile, Drama, Sisters, Ghosts, and Guts, all #1 New York Times bestsellers. She also adapted and illustrated four graphic novel versions of Ann M. Martin’s Baby-Sitters Club series and has contributed short stories to many anthologies. Raina’s accolades include six Eisner Awards, a Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor, a Stonewall Honor and many best-of and notables lists.

About the exhibit, Raina Telgemeier states: “Facing Feelings offers exhibition visitors the chance to see what shapes a life in comics. Sharing art from my childhood, my early attempts at short story comics, and the thought process behind some of my favorite graphic novel pages, the exhibit connects the ‘Raina’ on the page with me, Raina: the cartoonist!”

In addition to Telgemeier’s work, Facing Feelings also includes works by artists who influenced her and show great skill in depicting human emotions, including Keiji Nakazawa, Lynn Johnston, Bill Watterson, Lynda Barry, Jeff Smith, Charles Schulz, Ernie Bushmiller, Robb Armstrong, Will Eisner and more.

Curated by Anne Drozd, the exhibition consists of works on loan from the artist and from the collections of the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum at The Ohio State University.

“We’re thrilled to share the first major retrospective of Raina Telgemeier’s work with our communities,” said Anne Drozd, curator of Facing Feelings, “by telling stories from her own youth — in an accessible manner, and with brave vulnerability —Telgemeier changed what comics for young audiences could be. Her graphic novels like Smile (2010) were read by adolescents who are now Ohio State students, and they remain beloved bestsellers for young people around the globe.”

A public event and reception for the exhibition will be held on Saturday, June 17 at the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum. Details forthcoming.

For more information on this exhibition and related programming, visit


About The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum

The Billy Ireland Cartoon Library & Museum, part of The Ohio State University Libraries, houses the world’s largest collection of materials related to cartoons and comics, including original art, books, magazines, journals, comic books, archival materials and newspaper comic strip pages and clippings.


  1. OMG this is in my area! YAY! Very prestigious space for an outstanding artist who is so innovative. I’m going!

  2. Willl you have an opening for her?

  3. Yes, Raina will be in Columbus on June 17th for a program and reception to celebrate the opening of this exhibition. We’ll be announcing the full details and schedule soon.

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