your are at Comic Art & Graffix Gallery Your source for comic books, comic art, pulps, auctions and more History of Comics | Artist Biographies | Collecting How To
Museum of Comic Art | Search this Site | Web Links
About | Art For Sale | Comics For Sale
Comics On CDRom | Movie Posters | Pulps For Sale
We Buy Collections | Contact Us |Home Page

Biographies of the Stars

Hugo Pratt

Hugo Pratt lived an eventful life from an early age! Born near Rimini in 1927, he lived

in Venice until the age of 10 while his father Roland worked in Italian Abyssinia. In 1942, 5 years after the family had reunited in North Africa, Roland Pratt died of an infection in a British internment camp and the surviving Pratts were repatriated to Italy. Hugo then began studies at the Venice Academy of Fine Arts, but was drafted into the Fascist army. The end of World War II found him in an Australian internment camp.

Returning to Italy in 1945 he created his first comic strip, "Asso di Picche", a collaboration with Mario Faustinelle and Alberto Ungaro. In 1950 Pratt moved to Argentina where he created the popular comic strips "Sgt. Kirk" (1953), "Ernie Pike" (1956), and "Anna della Jungla" (1959), a jungle adventure. From Argentina Pratt moved to England, working for several London newspapers. After a brief return to Argentina, where he edited the magazine "Mister X", Pratt moved back to Italy, working for the Corriere dei Piccolo in Milan, then for the monthly "Sgt. Kirk" in 1967. While working on several other strips he created "Una Ballata del Mare Salato", a tale of WWI in the Pacific, for the French comics weekly "Pif-Gadget". This strip introduced Pratt's most famous character, the roguish sea captain Corto Maltese. In 1970 Corto's adventures began to appear as a regular feature of the famed Belgian comics magazine "Tintin", and were published as collections by Casterman.

Pratt has been described as a 'difficult' artist. Not only does his style seem odd or sloppy, the whole pace of his stories is much slower than most comic books. A whole page can be devoted to "talking heads" or captionless pictures creating atmosphere, and Pratt often displays action without text. Heavily influenced by Milton Caniff, Pratt was a teller of complex, typically fatalistic stories with subtly depicted characters motivated by tragic compulsions interacting in a carefully-researched historical period. Although many of his stories can be read as adventures they are essentially Proustian explorations of the atmosphere of vanished eras.

Pratt created a number of independent comic strip series in the last 20 years of his life, the most notable being "Cato Zulu" (1984), a tale of the colonial wars in South Africa; "Jesuit Joe", (1978-1984), about a Canadian Mountie who is a law unto himself; and "West of Eden", an adventure story set in East Africa. He authored two graphic novels illustrated by Milo Manara; "Indian Summer", a tale of Puritans and Indian conflicts in 17th century New England, and "El Gaucho", a tale of early 19th century Argentina. He also wrote several novels and an autobiography.

Pratt died of cancer at his home near Lausanne, Switzerland, on August 20, 1995.

written by Andy Etris

Downlaod-able golden age comics for Adobe acrobat. Get them now!!! Movie Poster Auctions,  comic book auctions, pulp auctions, art auctions and more...

This site created & maintained by Graffix Multimedia ©1992-2006
This is the HTML Web Counterth page view on this website since 1994.