Tag Archives: Johan de Moor

‘De Leeuw van Vlaanderen’ in a reworked version by Johan De Moor

“De Leeuw van Vlaanderen”, probably one of the best known (and appreciated) album ever created by Bob De Moor has seen several reeditions overtime since it’s creation almost 70 years ago. Bob De moor always took care of the cover artwork which changed with almost every edition.

However, when in 2002 the BCB (Belgisch Centrum van het Beeldverhaal) and the Belgian Post released a brand new pocket edition of the album, many thought that the coverartwork had been taken from the 1952 version as edited by the Standaard. However, if you look really close you can see that it bares some details which you’d never find with Bob De Moor but rather with the work created by his son Johan De Moor.

When I first bought the album it was the first thing I noticed when scrutinizing the drawing. This had to be Johan. And that is precisely what has happened. For the occasion Johan De Moor recreated the 1952 coverartwork.

We found the original black and white drawing of that cover and although we only were allowed to use the picture the owner took (which is cropped unfortunately), you can distinguish some elements that show this is Johan De Moor at work. It most of all definitely shows the more ‘freeway style’ which Johan De Moor uses, the best example being the body of the fallen soldier (and especially his hands) where Johan De Moor decided to let his style take over instead of following the clear lines which his father set out for this drawing.

You can judge for yourself below: The original drawing versus the version by Johan De Moor.

'De Leeuw van Vlaanderen' in a reworked version by Johan De Moor

'De Leeuw van Vlaanderen' in a reworked version by Johan De Moor

The lost 2nd part of the ‘De witte maw-maw’ album cover

In March 1999 a black and white version of the Snoe and Snolleke album “De Witte Maw-Maw” saw the light of day.

It was a collaboration between 3 comic strip festivals and the Brussels based Enigma publishing house and it seems they had really big plans keeping the Bob De Moor fans busy for quite some time collecting all the different parts, because yes, they had split up the album in 2 parts.

The second part was to be released on the Comic Festival of Ganshoren later that year, on may 15th, to be followed by 3 parts compiling “De Spaa-motor”.

Below the copy we have (thanks to Alain Demaret for giving this!).

de-witte-maw-maw-enigma

‘Was’ because alas, nothing materialised except for this first part. Why? We’re not sure, but we have contacted some people to get some more info on this.

Nevertheless, we know this, Johan De moor had drawn a cover for the first part and – and this many people don’t know – he also completed the 2nd cover artwork, which in fact together with part 1 composed one single drawing. We have known this for a while, but it was only when we stumbled on this blog post by the Brussels based comic store Het B-Gevaar that we discovered the 2nd part too.

de-witte-maw-maw-deel-1-2

de-witte-maw-maw-fenixAs you will see the cover artwork for the Fenix album version published in 2005 by Brabantstrip is quite different too from this 1999 version by Johan De Moor. Especially Snoe and Snolleke have been redrawn for the later version and added into the first cover, which creates a better balance. At the same time Johan De Moor gave them a more Bob De Moor style.

We’ll update this story when we get extra information.

Johan De Moor pays tribute to Bob De Moor’s Balthazar for the upcoming Comic Strip Festival in Brussels (02-04/09)

From September 2 through September 4 you can visit the Brussels Comic Strip Festival in the Brussels park.

The festival has been celebrating comics of all kinds in Brussels since 2010, and welcomes more than 100,000 visitors each year. Young or old, amateur or specialist, there is always something for everyone among the many activities on offer.

For the 2016 edition, the Brussels park will be hosting comic museums, dozens of publishing houses, exhibitions, book shops, comic sellers, conferences, workshops and hundreds of authors signings. The Brussels Comic Strip Festival also includes a night-time show at Brussels Park, the Balloon’s Day Parade, the Comic Strip Festival’s Rally, comic strip exhibitions and activities throughout the city.

From September 2 through September 4 you can visit the Brussels Comic Strip Festival in the Brussels park. The festival has been celebrating comics of all kinds in Brussels since 2010, and welcomes more than 100,000 visitors each year. Young or old, amateur or specialist, there is always something for everyone among the many activities on offer. For the 2016 edition, the Brussels park will be hosting comic museums, dozens of publishing houses, exhibitions, book shops, comic sellers, conferences, workshops and hundreds of authors signings. The Brussels Comic Strip Festival also includes a night-time show at Brussels Park, the Balloon's Day Parade, the Comic Strip Festival’s Rally, comic strip exhibitions and activities throughout the city. We have been there for the past few years and it's always a delight meeting authors, publishers and friends. For Bob De Moor fans, there is a big chance you'll be able to complete your collection there as there are always shops present which also cater to the more 'conservative' comic strip fans. But, let's get back to Bob De Moor, or more precisely his son Johan De Moor who has completed the official artwork for the Festival's posters. On the poster we not only Tintin, the Smurfs, Ric Hochet, Thorgal, the Chevalier Ardent, etc., but also Balthazar. I'm sure you will recognise a lot other characters including a reference to Willy Vandersteen ("De schat van Beersel"). We all know that especially Balthazar is one of Johan's favourite characters, so that doesn't come as a surprise. Quite a nice poster this one is!

We have been there for the past few years and it’s always a delight meeting authors, publishers and friends. For Bob De Moor fans, there is a big chance you’ll be able to complete your collection there as there are always shops present which also cater to the more ‘conservative’ comic strip fans.

From September 2 through September 4 you can visit the Brussels Comic Strip Festival in the Brussels park. The festival has been celebrating comics of all kinds in Brussels since 2010, and welcomes more than 100,000 visitors each year. Young or old, amateur or specialist, there is always something for everyone among the many activities on offer. For the 2016 edition, the Brussels park will be hosting comic museums, dozens of publishing houses, exhibitions, book shops, comic sellers, conferences, workshops and hundreds of authors signings. The Brussels Comic Strip Festival also includes a night-time show at Brussels Park, the Balloon's Day Parade, the Comic Strip Festival’s Rally, comic strip exhibitions and activities throughout the city. We have been there for the past few years and it's always a delight meeting authors, publishers and friends. For Bob De Moor fans, there is a big chance you'll be able to complete your collection there as there are always shops present which also cater to the more 'conservative' comic strip fans. But, let's get back to Bob De Moor, or more precisely his son Johan De Moor who has completed the official artwork for the Festival's posters. On the poster we not only Tintin, the Smurfs, Ric Hochet, Thorgal, the Chevalier Ardent, etc., but also Balthazar. I'm sure you will recognise a lot other characters including a reference to Willy Vandersteen ("De schat van Beersel"). We all know that especially Balthazar is one of Johan's favourite characters, so that doesn't come as a surprise. Quite a nice poster this one is!But, let’s get back to the subject of this article. Johan De Moor has completed the official artwork for the Festival’s posters (thanks to Alain Demaret for the info). On the poster we not only find the characters such as TintinSmurfette, Ric Hochet, Thorgal, the Chevalier Ardent, etc., but also Balthazar. Yep, that funny abstract character which De Moor developed in 1975. We all know that especially Balthazar is one of Johan’s favourite characters, so that doesn’t come as a surprise.

I’m sure you will recognise a lot other characters including a reference to Willy Vandersteen (“De schat van Beersel”). Quite a nice poster this one is!

Dirk Stallaert completed the new cover for the reissue in black and white of the original version of “The secret of Vulcania”

site cover VulcaniaFrom 1 February 1954 until 25 May 1954 the newspapers De Nieuwe Gids, De Antwerpse and ’t Vrije Volksblad published the Snoe & Snolleke story “Het geheim van Vulcania”. The album has since the publication in 1954 never been published in album format, at least not in its original form, black and white that is.
In 1993 the album saw a coloured album release via the Standaard Uitgeverij, however many of the drawings had been adapted to fit a coloured version – as we have shown several times already – so for many people it was still a mystery how the album actually looked like in black and white.

9a41c4e6-7414-11e4-8f09-3cf49d99a6e1We also have to mention that a version of the black and white album had been spread by Het Belgisch Stripgenootschap, albeit in a not so good copied format, and according to our information, this version (which has been reprinted for years) is an illegal one.
But luckily there is the team of Brabant Strip who have now released the black and white version of the album in their Fenix series, including the announcements as published in the newspapers. The album comes with a real cover on top. When looking at the cover you should be able to immediately recognise the hand of no-one else but one of Flanders (even Belgium’s) best comic artists, Dirk Stallaert (Nino, Mieleke Melleke Mol, Plankgas en Plastronneke, …).

I contacted Dirk for some feedback.

BDM: Normally it’s Bob De Moor’s son Johan who takes care of the cover artwork (after the work of his father) for the Fenix reissue series of Snoe & Snolleke. Why did you make the cover this time?

Dirk Stallaert: I honestly have no idea why Johan didn’t draw it this time. I know via Brabant Strip that he didn’t mind me drawing the cover. Maybe he just didn’t have the time for it.

(Editor’s note: In a phone call we had with Johan De Moor, he confirms that it was a lack of time but he also stresses that he was pretty sure that Dirk Stallaert was the perfect man for the job. Case proven.)

BDM: Have you chosen the scene (visible in the strips 37, 38) on which the cover is based or was it suggested to you?

Dirk Stallaert: It was Yves Kerremans from Brabant Strip who suggested to use that scene.

BDM: I suppose it’s not an easy task to invent a cover for an album, which is not yours to begin with. Were there elements in this album that made it a difficult task?

Dirk Stallaert: Aaaah, it’s always a difficult task to try and get things right. Even for my own work it’s always a difficult task to make a cover and when I have to work in someone else’s style it’s even more difficult. I have just received the album yesterday and what stands out I think is the thickness of the lines… it’s quite heavy I must say and the fish isn’t flexible enough to my taste. But like I said, there’s always something to complain about. “Le plaisir de se voir imprimé” is a pleasure which I haven’t had this time. I quite like how the sky looks though. I nicked the idea from “The Black Island”. But don’t tell anyone!

BDM: Ha, as always you have succeeded in perfectly representing the style though as used by Bob De Moor in the album, but keeping your own ‘schwung’ (the sawfish that is).

Dirk Stallaert: I’m quite glad you have discovered the ‘schwung’, because I missed that flexibility. I had documented me really well and had first made a few sketches of the sawfish.

(Editor’s note: Dirk Stallaert sent us the sketches below.)

Zigomar schetsen

As always the pencil sketches are a lot more fluent and expressive. The shark which you can see in the sketch didn’t make it in the final version. It’s often a problem when using the clear line, you only have one line, and that one has to be the perfect one.

Tric goes fishing in 1951, slightly corrected by Johan De Moor in 2012

When Jean-Michel Boxus, boss of the Brussels based editor BD Must, started work on the reissue of the Monsieur Tric albums (available here), he also decided to include all of the Monsieur/Professeur Tric/Troc stories which never had been published before in album format. The stories concerned are the ones which never had been published as a one page story in Tintin. What followed was a lot of time going through each and every Tintin issue in order to get hold of each and every ‘missing’  Tric story. They would be added in volume 1 of the Monsieur Tric collection.

The story as published on the 2nd page of the Tintin of 17 February 1951.
The story as published on the 2nd page of the Tintin of 17 February 1951.

One of those stories, titled “Il faut savoir se borner” which can be freely translated as “You must learn to know when enough is enough”, has some extra information attached to it. Published on the 2nd page of the Tintin of 17 February 1951, the 3-case strip sees Tric out on a fishing trip which looks very successful in the first case. Too successful because his boat sinks in the 3rd and final case because of the huge amount of fish he has caught.

The cleaned out first case of the one-strip story.
The cleaned out first case of the one-strip story.

You can see that the first case is ‘incomplete’ because the Tintin Stamp was placed in the left bottom corner of the page – not by Bob De Moor, but probably by the same person who also added Snowy in this drawing (it is commonly believed that these “La classe sans maitre” drawings were the precursors to Professeur Tric since the Tric character would appear only a few weeks later). A Tintin Stamp in a Monsieur Tric album? That would have been a no go, so BD Must had to find a solution in order to get the story published.

The corrected corner, later melted with the cleaned out first case.
The corrected corner, later melted with the cleaned out first case.

Since the original drawing was lost, Jean-Michel Boxus asked Bob De Moor‘s son Johan De Moor to restore the drawing to what could have been its original version before it was printed in Tintin. As we all know, this isn’t the first time that Johan De Moor has been restoring drawings from his father in order to be published so the request was a very logical one. In case you missed it, for the last version of “De schele zilvervos” (dutch for”The squint-eyed silver fox”) out via Standaard Uitgeverij, Johan De Moor even completely redrew the cover.

On August 7, 2012, 3 days after the initial request was made, Johan De Moor sent the missing corner of the 1st case to BD Must. You can see the replacement on the left. The drawing was then placed in the cleaned out scan from the Professeur Tric strip and coloured with the rest of the cases.

Thanks to Jean-Michel Boxus for helping out with this article.

Barelli in Madrid with Citroën and the Coconuts

As you all know, Citroën was a brand of cars which always have had a special place in the over of Bob De Moor. The Citroën cars pop up in almost every Barelli album plus he also made a special Citroën cover for the book “La 22, Enquête sur une mystérieuse Citroën” by Hervé Laronde and Fabien Sabatès published by Rétroviseur in 1994. And that wouldn’t be the only Bob De Moor related Citroën drawing which would hit the market around that time.

Barely in Madrid with Citroën and the Coconuts
Barely in Madrid with Citroën and the Coconuts

For the 1994 Citroën calendar, the car producer (via Le Lombard) had asked Johan De Moor to offer a drawing for the June page. The idea was that each comic author would make a drawing representing a Citroën car placed in one of the most beautiful lanes the world had on offer at that time. The text on the front of the calendar was “En 1994, tous les chemins ne mènent pas à Rome. Cette année, Citroën défile sur les plus belles avenues du monde” (freely translated as: In 1994 not all roads lead to Rome. This year Citroën passes through the most beautiful lanes in the world.).

Back to Johan De Moor. The son of Bob De Moor found no better way than to create a drawing featuring not only Barelli driving a Citroën AX on the Gran Via in Madrid, but also the famous spy trio The Coconuts (from the Barelli album “The secret agents”) offering a ‘devilish’ soundtrack as the text underneath the drawing explains.

Johan De Moor signed with this put below his signature: (Bob De Moor Inv.). We tried getting Johan on the line tonight for the meaning of that ‘Inv.’ but he was unreachable, we’ll update when we get hold of him :).

Black day for artists worldwide as freedom of speech ends in bloodbath at French office Charlie Hebdo

With over 12 people killed and several severely injured during a terrorist raid by Islam extremists on the offices of the satirical magazine Charlie Hebdo, January 7th, 2015 will go into history as the 9/11 of art. So far the shooting cost the lives of 5 cartoonists: Charb, Cabu, Wolinski, Philippe Honoré and Tignous.

Johan De Moor's answer to the barbaric killing at the Charlie Hebdo HQ.
Johan De Moor’s answer to the barbaric killing at the Charlie Hebdo HQ.

When we reached out to Johan De Moor yesterday afternoon he was in shock, having known several cartoonists personally. He promised to send us a cartoon and this morning we received these 2 drawings, the first being a rework of Charb‘s last drawing, drenched in very dark cynical humor. We’re sure that Charlie Hebdo would have loved it

"Mercredi 7 janvier", the second cartoon by Johan De Moor.
“Mercredi 7 janvier”, the second cartoon by Johan De Moor.

The second marks the day of terror. Voicing a thought can mean the end of your life, also in Europe. Freedom of speech in Europe is under threat and it remains to be seen if other magazines and cartoonists will censor their work in order not to end up dead themselves. For those opposing to the freedom of speech, always remind these words (often erroneously quoted as being from Voltaire): “I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it.”

And this morning Johan sent us this picture of Belgian cartoonists united for Charlie Hebdo and the freedom of speech and art. You can see Johan De Moor, second on the right.

Belgian cartoonists united for Charlie Hebdo.
Belgian cartoonists united for Charlie Hebdo.

The Mole Empire in 2 very different publications (part 1)

On December 31st 1954, the Flemish newspaper Het Nieuws van de Dag (not to be confounded with the Dutch newspaper De Courant/Nieuws van de Dag) announced a brand new story of Bob De Moor‘s ‘De avonturen van Nonkel Zigomar, Snoe en Snolleke’: “Het Mollenrijk”. It would take 26 years before it would be released in an album format – in french via Bédéscope on 2000 copies – under the title “L’empire des Taupes”, and 48 (!!) years before it would finally see a publication in its original Flemish form, on 775 copies; and this thanks to the work of the people behind Brabant Strip who dug the material up from their archives.

The 1980 Bédéscope version on the left, the Brabant Strip version on the right.
The 1980 Bédéscope version on the left, the Brabant Strip version on the right.

There are quite some differences between both versions which you don’t see on first sight, but they do jump forward when you look closely. Today we’ll handle the cover artwork and tomorrow we’ll take a closer look at the content.

In both cases the cover of the album was a cover Bob De Moor had drawn in 1979/1980, with minor differences. First of all, the cover of Brabant Strip seems to hold the complete ‘borders’ too, which were hidden on the Bédéscope version. As a result you see some extra details on the left and right, and on the top and the bottom. But don’t mistake, some corrections were made too, for instance the Bédéscope version has stalagmites on the right which were cut off in the Brabant Strip version to put the title. The Brabant Strip version also has 2 extra stalactites added in the upper right corner (probably drawn by Johan De Moor – we’ll confirm this). You will also see in the Brabant Strip version that the stalactites in the upper left corner have been corrected, for example where originally Oncle Zigomar‘s head was. Again, we think that these corrections were made by Johan De Moor.

Something that also is quite remarkable is the coloring used for both covers. Whereas Brabant Strip decided to go for a more natural coloring of the characters and environment, Bédéscope went Hawaiian style rendering the whole venomously greenish. Up to you the reader to decide which one you prefer the most, but we’ll stick to the Brabant Strip version.

The biggest difference between both versions however can be found inside the album. But that’s for tomorrow’s news when we dive into some local politics that influenced not just Bob De Moor but many others like Marc Sleen, Willy Vandersteen and so on. Especially for this article we did some traveling and you’ll also learn a bit how Flemish cartoonist incorporated politics into their work.

Bob De Moor says goodbye to Hergé in De Zwijger of 1983

On March 9 1983 the Flemish satirical weekly De Zwijger (English: The silent one) invited several comic authors for a tribute to Hergé who had passed away the week before on March 3. For the occasion De Zwijger invited such comic authors as Theo van den Boogaard, Luc Zeebroek (which is another nickname for Kamagurka), Jan, Kamagurka, Mark Smeets, Quirit, Luk Vandevijver, Zak, Dirk Stallaert, Evermeulen, Gal, Marc Sleen, Zak and also Bob De Moor. Good to know, Theo van den Boogaard worked out a 4 page story with Quick & Flupke based on drawings by Hergé.

Where is Bob De Moor?
Where is Bob De Moor?

But back to Bob De Moor. Strangely enough he wasn’t mentioned on the front of the issue as you can see on the left although a tribute was published on page 7. It must have been an odd reason because most of the other comic authors don’t really play in the same league as Bob De Moor.

While we await our copy to arrive to give you a proper scan, we already were sent a first tiny picture, which we have used today.

Farewell to Hergé by Bob De Moor
Farewell to Hergé by Bob De Moor

The drawing sees Hergé walking away towards the sun with the Marlinspike Hall (French: Le château de Moulinsart) on the right. A drawing falls out of his art folder, that of Tintin and Snowy. Below on the right you see the sentence “When the Saints Go Marchin’ In…” taken from an American gospel hymn. First recorded on May 13, 1938 by jazz musician Louis Armstrong and his Orchestra, the hymn itself expresses the wish to go to Heaven, picturing the saints going in through the Pearly Gates. For that reason it is entirely appropriate for funerals. We have asked the family De Moor to have an insight in the music collection of Bob De Moor and we are pretty sure that the version by Louis Armstrong can be found in there. Unless it’s the version which Elvis Presley recorded… we’ll update this story when we know more!

Some more info on the weekly De Zwijger, because there’s an extra link with the family De Moor. It was launched in 1982 by journalist and publicist Johan Anthierens and Herman van Hove. That very Johan Anthierens would later on translate several Johan De Moor albums into Dutch in a way that no other translator ever succeeded in doing.

The weekly would file for bankruptcy in 1984 after it had published a critical article on Roularta. Bad luck because that publisher happened to be a business partner of the publisher Biblo, which edited… De Zwijger. The move resulted in a loss of sponsors. Add to this the massive workload for Anthierens and the recipe for failure was created. Even though the publisher Kritak accepted to release it after they were dropped from Biblio, it was too late for the weekly which stopped being published in June 1984.

The end also meant the end of a Flemish magazine in the style of Le Canard enchaîné or Charlie Hebdo.

Below is the version by Louis Armstrong.

Johan De Moor presents new album “Coeur Glacé” with a tongue in cheek video

Out on the 22nd of August is the brand new album, “Coeur Glacé” (Eng. “Ice cold heart”) by Johan De Moor, son of Bob De Moor, on a scenario by Gilles Dal. The video which Le Lombard has put online is a real pearl as far as promoting a comic album is concerned and shows that Johan De Moor has inherited the joking genes from his father (in case you weren’t convinced already by his many cartoons).

The 6:32 video acts as an interview of Gilles Dal by Johan De Moor but with the duo clearly taking the piss out of… Johan De Moor. Johan De Moor acts as a comic author who is unknowingly plagiarizing Johan De Moor… can you still follow? Things get a lot clearer when you watch the actual video below.

You also will notice some of the pages for the album – and no to serious comments on them, after all ‘he’ is plagiarizing Johan De Moor – and if we are not wrong some clear line influences too… The album “Coeur Glacé” can now be ordered on Amazon France. Recommended reading!

It’s not the first time that Johan De Moor works with Gilles Dal, they also co-worked on “Comment devenir belge en 10 leçons. You can check out some more of Gilles Dal work right here.