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La Légende d'Albert Ier: Book illustrations by Hergé

jock123
Moderator
#1 · Posted: 11 Nov 2017 15:33
Over on Facebook, in honour of Armistice Day, I've posted two of Hergé's illustrations for La Légende d'Albert Ier, roi des Belges, by Paul Werrie, depicting a First World War battlefield in Belgium.

Published in 1934, it's a biography of the late King Albert the First of the Belgians, who had perished in a climbing accident in February of that year, to be succeeded by his son, Leopold III.

Hergé provided a series of small illustrations and plates, in a style reminiscent of lino- or wood-cuts, which he often used in the production of covers and editorial pictures for the Petit Vingtième, notably his series for Treasure Island and Bambi.
These were actually skilfully rendered in black India ink, with touches of white gouache, to give the appearance of a print.

It's work such as this which is a notable reminder of the fact that the loose style of the early comic strips, both Tintin and Quick & Flupke, for example, was a conscious choice by Hergé, and not just down to lack of skill. It also shows how during that period Hergé was a reasonably prolific source of all kinds of commercial art.

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