Monday, November 28, 2011

Profile: Hergé - Comics Writer and Artist

Georges Prosper Remi (May 22, 1907 – March 3, 1983), better known by the pen name Hergé, was a Belgian comics writer and artist. His best known and most substantial work is the 23 completed comic books in The Adventures of Tintin series, which he wrote and illustrated from 1929 until his death in 1983, although he was also responsible for other well known comic book series such as Quick & Flupke (1930–1940) and Jo, Zette and Jocko (1936–1957).

Born into a middle-class family in Etterbeek, Brussels, he took a keen interest in Scouting in early life, something that would prove highly influential on his later work. Initially producing illustrations for Belgian Scouting magazines, in 1927 he began working for the conservative wing newspaper Le XXe Siècle, where he adopted the pen name "Hergé" [ɛʁʒe], based upon the French pronunciation of "RG", his initials reversed. It was here, in 1929, that he began serialising the first of the Adventures of Tintin, Tintin in the Land of the Soviets.

The notable qualities of the Tintin stories include their vivid humanism, a realistic feel produced by meticulous and wide ranging research, and Hergé's ligne claire drawing style. Adult readers enjoy the many satirical references to the history and politics of the 20th century. The Blue Lotus, for example, was inspired by the Mukden incident that led to the Chinese-Japanese War of 1934. King Ottokar's Sceptre could be read against the background of Hitler's Anschluss or in the context of the struggle between the Romanian Iron Guard and the King of Romania, Carol II; whilst later albums such as The Calculus Affair depict the Cold War. Hergé has become one of the most famous Belgians worldwide and Tintin is still an international success.

Hergé is a prominent national hero in his native country, to the extent where he has been described as the actual "personification of Belgium". The long-awaited Hergé Museum was opened in Louvain-La-Neuve on 2 June 2009. Designed by Pritzker Prize-winning architect Christian de Portzamparc, the museum reflects Hergé's huge corpus of work which has, until now, been sitting in studios and bank vaults. His work remains a strong influence on comics, particularly in Europe. He was inducted into the Comic Book Hall of Fame in 2003.

Read More: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hergé


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