Last week you were able to see some pictures Bob De Moor took when Johannes Stawowy stayed at the Studios Hergé back in 1986. On two of these pictures you were able to see the not so well known poster and sticker created for the Belgian pavilion at the Vancouver Expo of 1986. Today we’ll take a close look at that item since it was completely drawn by Bob De Moor in 1986.
For the 1986 Expo Belgium decided to go for the transportation theme and they really took it to heart by naming Tintin “the first man on the moon”. A life sized model of Tintin welcomed guests to the pavilion from the moon’s surface, a picture you can also see in the poster we are commenting today. The poster is – as far as the greeting Tintin characters are concerned – based on the 1969 drawing Bob De Moor made for the Studios Hergé when Neil Armstrong first set foot on the moon. We say ‘based’ because there are quite some differences to be noted with the first version from 1969.
The 1986 poster holds the following differences:
- The eyes of Tintin, Professor Calculus, Captain Haddock and Snowy have been moved more to the left (so that they look into the eyes of the visitors and not in the eyes of Neil Armstrong). You could wonder why Bob De Moor didn’t completely redrew the scene putting the 4 Tintin characters in front.
- Tintin is holding the sign up in the Expo ’86 poster (in his right hand) and not Captain Haddock. As a result both Tintin‘s right hand and Captain Haddock‘s left hand have been redrawn.
- Also Professor Calculus sees his left hand redrawn as he is no longer holding flowers.
- The crater close to Neil Armstrong was drawn completely in the 1986 version as was the mountain which Armstrong was blocking.
- The earth has been put lower so that it fits in the drawing.
The stickers created for the event didn’t all use the same changes. As you can see Professor Calculus again sees his left hand redrawn as he is no longer holding flowers but you can see that neither Tintin or Captain Haddock are holding up a sign. As a result Captain Haddock‘s left hand was also redrawn. The most noticeable difference with the poster are the eyes and the text balloon saying “Meet Tintin and Snowy at the Belgian pavilion.”
Back to the poster which also depicts the Belgian pavilion, as drawn by Bob De Moor. If you look well, all of the windows in the pavilion hold Tintin and parts of Hergé‘s moon rocket. As we all know De Moor was responsible for drawing the scaffolding as presented in Tintin albums, and we are pretty sure that he must have had the same feeling when having to draw the Belgian pavilion…
In a reaction Pierre Gay , the last cartoonist ever to be hired by Studios Hergé, confirms that he also collaborated on the poster: “I had forgotten this drawing, looking well now, I think I did the inking of the background — I always had that problem that my straight lines were somewhat shaky… Generally for this kind of work Bob made a very detailed sketch then I detailed it further, and depending on the difficulty or the importance of the project he inked the drawing himself or let me do it. Bob inked all the characters. I notice that I did the ‘E’, it’s slightly imperfect. Bob would have rounded it perfectly… but I was very young back then! Haha!”
Talking of the pavilion, in the main exhibit area, a sophisticated, working model of Antwerp‘s harbour was displayed complete with robotic cranes and ships. Also displayed was the Belgian canal system linking several seaports as well as innovations in urban transit. In the middle of it all, visitors could view a model of Europe’s first train. A 28 screen video presentation focused on transportation and culture. It also explained why Belgium is the only country on earth that could be seen from space as in the past Belgium had the lights on all night along its motorways. Since the crisis that is no longer the reality due to austerity measures.
We’ll be updating this article as we are awaiting some extra information. Also if you have a better scan of this poster, please let us know.