The Adventures of Herge: Creator of Tintin

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Editorial Reviews

Steven Heller
The book is a stunning collection of artifacts, including pre-Tintin drawings, Tintin sketches, newspaper clippings, magazine and book covers (including some for the children's supplement Le Petit Vingtieme, in which the comic strip originally appeared in 1929), pictures of puppets (originally created for animated cartoons) and personal photographs; much of the material was unearthed in the archives of the Studios Herge, where the strip and its offshoots were produced in the later years…The amazing feat of creating and propagating the Tintin brand is certainly the focus of this rich illustrated biography, but Herge was also an accomplished graphic designer and typographer who tried his hand at advertising. His bold pen-and-ink drawings, in the manner of woodcuts or linocuts, show a graphic side rarely seen. Likewise, his interest in abstraction, minimalism and Pop Art (all of which are curiously exhibited in his own work) suggests Herge was not entirely content being a comics artist. Yet it was his greatest gift.
—The New York Times
School Library Journal

Adult/High School -Published on the centenary of Georges Remi's birth, this introduction to the creator behind comic-book hero Tintin serves as an excellent introduction to and provides fine background material on European-and to a degree, international-popular culture in the 20th century. In addition to the requisite biographical information about Remi (whose pen name is the French phonetic spelling of his initials reversed), there are details about his political travails, his devotion to the avant-garde art scene (he and Andy Warhol became friendly enough to exchange portraits of each other), and the role and growth of scouting during the 20th century. With brief chapters on such topics as journalism and cinematography, the text is richly illustrated with archival photos, well-chosen drawings from "Tintin" and other works by Hergé, related or relevant artwork by others (including both friends and contemporaries), and reproductions of publications beyond the comics world in which Remi involved himself. Although the author tellingly makes no mention of the controversy-then or now-around Tintin in the Congo , he does address other aspects of how politics and art came a cropper of one another in both Tintin's adventures and Remi's professional life. Accessible and engaging, this is a good first serious biography of the Belgian artist.-Francisca Goldsmith, Halifax Public Libraries, Nova Scotia

Copyright 2008 Reed Business Information.
The Barnes & Noble Review
The Adventures of Hergé is a follow-up volume to Michael Farr's Tintin: The Complete Companion (2001). The revelatory first book laid bare the genesis of a globally beloved comic-book hero, the boy reporter called Tintin, created by the Belgian artist known as Hergé (born Georges Remi); the current project seeks to unwrap the artist himself. But success is more problematical for Farr's second trip to the Hergé well, for a number of reasons. First, anyone expecting a complete, linear biography of Hergé is doomed to disappointment. Instead, these are isolated essays based on "seven key aspects" of Hergé's life, such as "A Passion for Art" and "Be Prepared: A Lifelong Boy Scout." This scattershot approach results in a diffuse repetitiveness (we hear more than once that Tintin's moon landing preceded Neil Armstrong's) and occasional confusion of well-known facts and recondite references. But the main hurdles to a truly deep and satisfying portrait of Hergé are the subject's own reclusiveness and his work-bound, largely unadventurous life. Farr -- granted access to many papers and Hergé acquaintances -- does his best to penetrate the barriers the artist erected. Hergé had only two real "adventures" in his life: the fallout surrounding his seeming collaboration with the Nazis during WWII and his interrupted friendship with a Chinese artist named Chang Chong-chen. Farr covers both of these issues in good depth, and the latter becomes the emotional high point of Hergé's life story. But aside from these two "crises," the artist, like so many creators, lived an outwardly bland life defined by his dreams. And it's hard to turn those interior moments into a rousing chronicle. Nonetheless, with its slew of intriguing photos and raw artwork, this book still offers at least a teasing glimpse into the life of one of the 20th century's most talented comics creators. --Paul DiFilippo
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780867196795
  • Publisher: Last Gasp of San Francisco
  • Publication date: 3/1/2008
  • Pages: 128
  • Sales rank: 849,545
  • Product dimensions: 9.00 (w) x 11.90 (h) x 0.60 (d)

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