Almost 200 originals by the Japanese artist Osamu Tezuka, known as the God of Manga due to his contribution towards the Japanese cartoon strips, can be seen in this exhibition that will make known the work of this creator, essential for understanding the evolution of Japanese comics after the Second World War, and also one of the most prestigious and prolific authors of comics in the world.
Even though the manga, or Japanese comic, forms part of the great comic family, a series of aesthetic and narrative elements identify it with the comics produced in Japan. Osamu Tezuka shaped the modern manga when he started publishing manga shortly after the war. In 1947, the manga Shin Takarajima (published in English under the name New Treasure Island) would become a success. More than 400,000 copies were sold, in a period in which buying a manga was a luxury. His work was surprising due to its very innovative visual narrative, which was inspired by cinema and animation, and which provided a speed and movement that had rarely been seen in a comic book. They were long stories and highly developed, which were baptized as story-manga, which contrasted with the manga of humour, told in just a few pages or vignettes.
This work and the following ones had a major impact on many readers who they themselves decided also to become mangaka: manga authors. The influence of Tezuka was very important on a whole series of authors who would end up leading the manga industry over the following decades: names such as the duet Fujiko Fujio (the creators of Doraemon), Shotaro Ishinomori (author with the Guinness record for the number of comic pages published) or Yoshihiro Tatsumi (one of the main authors of gekiga), who have all recognized this. And nowadays in the latest creations, this influence can still be seen.
Astro Boy, Thr Princess Knight or Kimba, the White Lion, authentic icons of manga and also of Japanese animation, are some of his creations. Shortly afterwards, he would begin working on more adult characters: Adolf, Buddha, Phoenix, and one of his last major characters, the surgeon Black Jack.
Osamu Tezuka won the right to be called the God of Manga, he popularized genres and revolutionized Japanese animation. He’s probably one of the best known manga authors throughout the world, and without any doubt whatsoever, one of the most admired by the critics. This exhibition represents a unique opportunity to see his creations close up and to be able to get to know and admire the work of one of the most important comic authors of all times.
To learn more, see the topic guide on the exhibition.
In the inauguration of this exhibition we will count on the presence of the cinema director Macoto Tezuka, son of the author, who forms part of the current management of Tezuka Productions. Over the years, Macoto Tezuka has dedicated himself to supervising the adaptations and other things derived from the work of his father, and he himself has been commissioned to direct some adaptations.
This exhibition forms part of the collaboration agreement between FICOMIC and the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya, thanks to which the exhibition Corto Maltés by Juan Díaz Canales and Rubén Pellejero was produced, or the more recent El Víbora. Comix countercultural. With this new project FICOMIC and the Museu Nacional will continue working so as to spread the comic and make the relations visible that exist between the different arts.
Exhibition produced by FICOMIC, thanks to the close collaboration of the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya and Tezuka Productions and the Festival de la Bande Desinneè d’Angulema.