Thursday, September 26, 2013

Francesco Guccini's and Guido Buzzelli's Colpo di Stato

Today I received an obscure short story by Francesco Guccini (w) and Guido Buzzelli (a). It's "Colpo di Stato" [coup d'état], published for the first time in Undercomics # 0 (June 1973) and republished in French in the album Démons (1980). The French edition is good enough, but the only reason I'm writing this is because the Italian edition is a tabloid (!). What a joy it is to look at this great artist's work at this size! What I ask myself over and over again is why is Buzzelli so underrated? In any other medium he would have been considered a great master. But comics are something else... we all know that, right?...


7 comments:

mahendra singh said...

The inking is superb. These panels are delicious. You have lifted my spirits today!

More and more Buzzelli, please.

Isabelinho said...

I'm glad Mahendra!

I greatly enjoyed your latest post at the HU, by the way... I would like to discuss some related ideas (see my post about Pim and Francie above, for instance; maybe I'll expand on that...).

As for Buzzelli, search for him on this very blog, but I guess that you did that already.

mahendra singh said...

Many thanks for the kind words … I also have always enjoyed Al Columbia's work, it is a sort of parody of a parody of a parody.

There is one thing I notice, and I think YOU might write a good essay on it … the way that different cultures value draftsmanship. In UK and North America, it is of little worth or often made into a skillful joke (like Pim and Francie) … but in Hispanophone/Italie/France, it is still taken seriously by many readers ?

Isabelinho said...

Contemporary art is everywhere, so, it's the same thing wherever it is, Europe included. The deskilling that Kailyn mentions started in the United States (and it really boomed there in the fifties with Pop Art), but an European artist started it all: Marcel Duchamp. He didn't do it alone, of course, the Fauvists and Expressionists have a place in deskilling's history, I guess... Another problem is that Modernism linked illustration (commercial art, etc...) with kitsch. That's not completely unfair in my view. Great skill was not in repeating old techniques (so, traditional ways of representation inherited from the Renaissance were out). Great skill had to be what Francis Bacon called technical intelligence: finding new forms of representation with new materials (think Bacon himself and Jackson Pollock, or Anselm Kiefer, for instance).

Isabelinho said...

By the way, the only comics artist that fits this Modernist description of a great technician is Alberto Breccia, methinks. Buzzelli was too much of a traditionalist to be considered great, but there's where my po-mo self and Modernism differ.

mahendra singh said...

Much to think over … in certain aspects, illustration tends towards kitsch, which is why, for me at least, comix is the ultimate and best form of illustration.

There is also this to consider: some artists have such good technique that the technique itself is the message (like classical musicians). Buzzelli is this sort of artist.

His inking is like listening to Bach … structure, structure, structure!

Isabelinho said...

Buzzelli was a painter, that's why he was such a great inker. But he was also a great writer in a Kafkaesque vein. He should be translated into English, but foreign comics don't sell in America. We need a Kim Thompson for Argentine-Italian comics.