The Lakes International Comic Art Festival has over 70 guests lined up for its first out in October. As the event is on our doorstep (downthetubes is based in Lancaster), we thought we’d try and spotlight as many as we can in the run up to the event…
The highly rated Argentinian artist Jose Muñoz has had a strong influence on a number of other leading comic artists. Muñoz, who lives and works in Milan and Paris, is noted for his influential black and white artwork and his graphic novel series Alack Sinner was the inspiration for Frank Miller’s Sin City comic series.
Born in 1942 in Buenos Aires, Argentina, as a child he quickly developed a passion for design, with particular interest in the comics.
At twelve he attended the Escuela Panamericana de Arte, tutored by comic masters Alberto Breccia and Hugo Pratt. At the same time he studied sculpture and painting in the studio of Humberto Cerantonio.
He made his debut in comics as an assistant to Francisco Solano López and illustrating stories written by Héctor Oesterheld for the magazines Hora Cero and Frontera. His fiorst major break came in 1963, drawing the detective series Precinct 56 (Spanish comics blog), written by Eugenio Zappietro for the magazine Misterix. (The title, if not the content perhaps inspired by crime writer Ed McBain’s classic 87th Precinct novel series?)
In 1972 he left his home country for Europe, first living in London, then to Barcelona and finally taking root in Italy. In 1974 he met the Argentinian writer Carlos Sampayo, an encounter that marked the beginning of a long and fruitful collaboration, sparking the birth of the character Alack Sinner, a private detective whose adventures and wrapped in jazz, describe misery and nobility, in a New York so well imagined it could be real.
His ensuing credits include a long series of characters and stories such as Sudo Sudaca, Tango y milonga, Sophie, Gioche di luce (Games of Light), Europa in fiamme (Europe in Flames), Billie Holiday, Il Poeta (The Poet), Nel Bar (In the Bar) and Carlos Gardel.
In 1994 he drew De la Tierra del Fuego a Alaska by Andreu Martin and more stories by Jérôme Charyn: El colmillo de la serpiente (The Bite of the Snake) and Panna Maria. In 1995 he produced the colour comic The Magolfa with Paul Bertelle Farnetti and a series of political cartoons.
Starting in 1999, he published a series of collections of texts and drawings in black and white and colour: Orillas de Buenos Aires (1999), Carnet Argentin (2000), Féminin pluriel (2002), Paris Parenthèses (2004) and La Pampa y Buenos Aires (2006).
He has illustrated many posters, book covers and magazines, and illustrated books such as Pirates by Arthur Conan Doyle, Les damnés de la Pampa by Manuel Prado, Las fieras Cómplices by Horacio Quiroga, El perseguidor by Julio Cortázar, The nine billion names of God by Arthur C. Clarke, The Stranger by Albert Camus and others.
• The Lakes International Comic Art Festival runs from 18th – 20th October 2013. For all ticket booking information as well as details about the host of free events over the weekend throughout Kendal visit www.comicartfestival.com/ticketsbookings
• Jose Muñoz official web site: www.josemunozdessins.com