Rembrandt: Art Masters Series

Typex. SelfMadeHero, $29.99 (240p) ISBN 978-1-906838-69-0
By the time this earthy and chaotic graphic biography of Rembrandt catches up with him in 1642, the cantankerous painter is already famous and somewhat sick of the attention. Looking at the teeming mass of drunks in a bar, he cynically muses “I could immortalise those fools, too.” Typex (Andy: The Life and Times of Andy Warhol) emphasizes the hurly-burly of a crowded, pestilential mercantile Amsterdam, much like Rembrandt himself did. The author’s Rembrandt is no atelier-dwelling aesthete, but a cranky, lusty old grump with a big scowling mustache who likes his wine, his women, and spending money. Typex favors a broad style, his wide frames often packed with movement (one sequence shows a conversation where the drawing focuses entirely on the hands, not faces) with figures in various stages of grotesque comedic exaggeration. Characters drop in without preamble—such as Hendrick Uylenburgh, who offers Rembrandt a gallery showing, or Banning Cocq, the Amsterdam mayor pictured in The Night Watch. The narrative pandemonium mirrors that of Rembrandt’s life, lived always for the moment: “I paint,” Typex has him say, “I leave the arse-licking to others.” Bawdy but respectful, this biography focuses more on the man than his art. (Nov.)
Reviewed on : 10/04/2019
Release date: 11/01/2019
Genre: Comics
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