July 6, 2016

POP PEELLAERT

Today Spy Vibe celebrates Belgian artist Guy Peelaert. Peelaert (1934-2008) first pursued a career in the arts as a decorator and comic artist in Belgium. Eventually working out of Paris, he rode a wave of sixties psychedelia and Pop Art to create his celebrated comics, Les Aventures de Jodelle (1966) and Pravda (1967). He later became known for his iconic album cover deigns such as included Diamond Dogs (David Bowie) and It's Only Rock 'n Roll (Rolling Stones). Find out about Fantagraphics Books' new editions of Jodelle and Pravda here. Barbara fans will enjoy! May not be suitable for younger Spy Vibers. From the press release: "The Adventures of Jodelle, whose voluptuous title heroine was modeled after French teen idol Sylvie Vartan, is a satirical spy story set in a Space Age Roman-Empire fantasy world. Its then-revolutionary clashing of high and low culture references, borrowing as much from Renaissance painting as from a fetishized American consumer culture, marked the advent of the Pop movement within the nascent "9th art" of comic books, not yet dignified as "graphic novels" but already a source of great influence in avant-garde artistic circles. Visually, Jodelle was a major aesthetic shock. According to New Yorkmagazine, its "lusciously designed, flat color patterns and dizzy forced perspective reminiscent of Matisse and Japanese prints set a new record in comic-strip sophistication. Released a year later and first serialized in the French counter-culture bible Hara-Kiri, Pravda follows the surreal travels of an all-female motorcycle gang across a mythical American landscape, led by a mesmerizing cold-blooded heroine whose hyper-sexualized elastic anatomy was this time inspired by quintessential Gallic chanteuse Françoise Hardy. Pravda's eye-popping graphics pushed the psychedelic edge of Jodelle to dazzling new heights, further liberating the story from narrative conventions to focus the reader's attention on the stunning composition and glaring acid colors of the strips, with each frame functioning as a stand-alone cinematic picture." Below: Images from the books and Pravda cover of German magazine Form 50 (1970). Thanks to Jhalal Drut for putting this cover on my radar. Enjoy!








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