Monday, March 12, 2012

The Legacy of Jean "Moebius" Giraud In Five Essential Videos

Monday, March 12, 2012 - by Maurice Mitchell 0

Over the weekend Jean Giraud, also known as Moebius, died from illness. Another of my top ten concept artists has died. He's not as well known as other artists because some of his best works were on films that were never made.

In Europe, he has best known as the artist of the popular comic book Blueberry. He developed concept art for classic films of cinema like The Fifth Element (1997), TRON (1982) and The Abyss (1989).

Jean Giraud was born in Nogent-sur-Marne, in the suburbs of Paris, in 1938. When he was three years old, his parents divorced and he was raised mainly by his grandparents. The rupture between mother and father, city and country, created a lasting trauma that he explained lay at the heart of his choice of separate pen names.
In 1955 at age 16, he began his only technical training at the Arts Appliqués art school, where he started producing Western comics. He became close friends with another comic artist Jean-Claude Mézières.
In 1956 he left art school to visit his mother in Mexico and he stayed there eight months, after which he returned to work full time as an artist. In 1959-1960 he served his military service in Algeria, where he collaborated on the army magazine 5/5 Forces Françaises.
Giraud died in Paris, on 10 March 2012, aged 73, after a long battle with cancer. Fellow comic artist François Boucq stated that Moebius was "master of realist drawing with a real talent for humour, which he was still demonstrating with the nurses when I saw him in his hospital bed a fortnight ago".  - Wikipedia

1. In Search of Moebius: Jean Giraud Part 1/3 
The first part of the BBC documentary Moebius Redux: A Life in Pictures.
Documentary about Frenchman Jean Giraud, one of the most influential comic strip illustrators and authors of all time and also one of the genre's best kept secrets. He achieved his greatest fame under the pseudonym/alter ego Moebius, and his artistic influence extends beyond Europe to the USA and Japan. Features interviews with Giraud himself, Marvel Comics legend Stan Lee, American comic book artists Jim Lee and Mike Mignolla and many others.


You can watch part 2 here and 3 here .

2. Jean Giraud (Moebius) & Jijé - Tac au tac (1972) 
The first video shows his incredible drawing speed. Even in his later years this talent for fast focused drawing skills would be talked about. 
Jean Giraud (Moebius and Gir) and Jijé (Joseph Gillain) outline a history of cowboy and Indian huts and four alternates. GIRAUD starts and Jijé conclude this story to return to for a coffee break completely shifted to the universe of the Wild West. Tit for tat - 29/04/1972 In 1961, Giraud became the apprentice of Jijé, which at that time enjoyed a solid reputation in the world of European comics. As such, GIRAUD handles the inking of an episode of Jerry Spring, The Road to Coronado, a western series published in the magazine Spirou.



3. Moebius Redux: Jodorowsky's Dune
Back in 1975 surrealist director Alejandro Jodorowsky started work on an adaptation of Frank Herbert's Dune. He hired an amazing collection of artists including Moebius. The film was never made, but it is treasured among fans of Moebius and concept artists.(
In this section from the wonderful "Moebius Redux" Documentary, director Jodorowsky, and artists Moebius, H.R. Giger, Dan O'Bannon and Philippe Druillet discuss their work together on Dune.



4. Making of Tron Moebius by The Computer Graphics Museum 
Tron is his most famous work and this video shows some of his work on the film Tron. Some really nice screen to storyboard comparisons.If anyone can translate I'd appreciate it, since I can't understand a word.


5. Moebius & Sylvain
In his later years he developed his first animated film Thru the Mobeius Strip (2005). In this clip he talks about his incredible focus while drawing and his development of the film. He does an interview with fellow artist Sylvain Despretz who also worked on the film.

We've lost a great artist. You can see more of his work of Jean Henri Gaston "Moebius" Giraud at http://www.moebius.fr .

What thoughts did you have about Moebius? Did you learn anything from the videos you didn't know?

About the Author

Maurice Mitchell
Lover of science fiction and art.

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