From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
Marcel Gotlieb or Gotlib (born July 14, 1934 in Paris) is a French cartoonist, known as the creator of Gai-Luron, Superdupont and Rubrique-à-Brac. He is famed for his frequent sexual satire and ribaldry.
Marcel Gotlieb was born on July 14, 1934 in Paris to Jewish-Hungarian parents. In 1942 his father was deported and died at Buchenwald. As a kid, he attended classes for animation and illustrations. From the 1950s, he drew for a Disney magazine and illustrated some children books. From 1962 he worked for Vaillant, where his first comics series were short-lived. He created the series Nanar et Jujube, which was renamed Gai-Luron, in 1964, published in Pif.
In 1965 Gotlib met Jacques Lob and René Goscinny (famed for founding Pilote magazine, and co-creating Asterix). From this date, Gotlib worked for Pilote and collaborated with Goscinny. Together they created the series Les Dingodossiers. In 1967, Goscinny incited Gotlib to continue his series alone. Gotlib lauched a new series, Rubrique-à-brac, similar to the Dingodossiers. Trucs en vrac, a series composed of two albums in the same spirit, was also published later. In 1971, he gave up the Gai-Luron series to his collaborator Henri Dufranne. He participated in a radio program with Goscinny, Fred and Gébé, and collaborated with Patrice Leconte, who made a documentary about him in 1974.
In 1972, Gotlib left Pilote and launched the comics magazine l’Echo des savanes with Claire Bretecher and Nikita Mandryka, one of the first comic magazines for adults. It was also one of the first magazines that was owned and published by the cartoonists and authors themselves. His new series became very influenced by sexual matters, such as Rhââ Lovely and Rha-Gnagna. In 1975 he launched a new comics magazine, Fluide Glacial, with Alexis and Jacques Diament. He collaborated with Alexis and Mandryka in the series Hamster Jovial, about an old scout leader, and Pervers Pépère, about a dirty old man. He also drew Superdupont with Lob, Alexis and Solé. In 1986 he went back to Gai-Luron for one album, "la Bataille navale". In 1991, he received the Angoulême Festival Grand Prix and subsequently, in 1992, became the president of the festival. In 1993, he wrote an autobiography, J’existe, je me suis rencontré, which focuses on his youth, and in 2006 a more thorough one with journalist Gilles Verlant: Ma Vie-en-Vrac. In 1994, the documentary "la coccinelle de Gotlib" was broadcast on the French television channel Canal+.
First Gotlib's series are made with a very humoristic tone. Each story consists of two to four strips drawn in white and black. Rubrique-à-Brac and Les Dingodossiers consist of didactic dossiers of short unrelated strips, rawn in black and white. They revisit an extremely wide range of subjects, deal with stereotypes and clichés in a caricatural way. Gotlib use caricature and parodies to depict the everyday life, and greets it with extreme derision. In Cinemastok and Gai-Luron, the same technique is used, while these series are presented in a different manner.
Later, from his departure from Pilote in 1972, Gotlib style changed a lot, the scenario as well as the illustrations. The last tome of Rubrique-à-Brac is already marked by this evolution, but it became more obvious with the series published in L'Echo des Savannes and Fluide Glacial. These two comics magazine were created by Gotlib for an adult audience exclusively, and made it possible for Gotlib to express himself entirely freely, while censorship was present in Pilote, magazine made for a young public. Rhââ Lovely , Rhâ-Gnagna and Pervers Pépère are series exclusively dedicated to sex satire, but sexual matters are also present in Hamster Jovial.
It is notable that most Gotlib's strips are deprived from backgrounds, a large portion of the panels being occupied by elaborate dialogues. Also, the large majority of his series were uncolorized in their original publication. Gotlib's graphic style was much influenced by American and British magazines. In particular, the Dingodossiers and R.A.B. series had as a model the series published by the American magzine Mad.
- 1976: Best French comical work at the Angoulême International Comics Festival for Gai-Luron
- 1991: Grand Prix de la ville d'Angoulême
- 2007: Grand Prix Saint-Michel, Brussels, Belgium
- nominated for the Prix Saint-Michel Press Prize for Gotlib 1: Ma vie en vrac
- Les Dingodossiers with Goscinny (Dargaud, 3 volumes, 1967, 1972, 1975)
- Rubrique-à-Brac (Dargaud, 5 volumes, 1970 to 1974)
- Clopinettes with Mandryka (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 1974)
- Cinémastock with Alexis (Dargaud, 3 volumes, 1974 and 1976)
- Trucs En Vrac (Dargaud, 2 volumes, 1977 and 1985)
- Gai-Luron (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 10 volumes, 1975 to 1982)
- Rhââ Lovely (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 3 volumes, 1976 to 1978)
- Superdupont with Lob, Alexis and Solé (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 5 volumes, 1977, 1980, 1983, 1995)
- Hamster Jovial (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 1977)
- Rhâ-Gnagna (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 2 volumes, 1979 and 1980)
- Pervers Pépère (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 1981)
- Dans la joie jusqu'au cou with Alexis (Audie - Fluide Glacial, 1979