European Comics in Official and Fan Translations


Philippe Druillet

Philippe Druillet

Philippe Druillet is one of the most influential French authors and is well known for his baroque drawings and bizarre science fiction stories. Druillet was born in Toulouse, Haute-Garonne, France but spent his youth in Spain, returning to France in 1952 after the death of his father. After working as a photographer for a couple of years, Druillet made his debut in comics with 'Lone Sloane, le Mystère des Abîmes', a comic book published by Losfeld in 1966, that drew inspiration from Druillet's favorite science fiction writers Van Vogt and Lovecraft.

Afterwards, he worked as a comedian with the Théatre de Soleil. At the same time, he made his first sci-fi and fantasy illustrations publishers like Opta, including a couple of Lovecraft reissues. Fascinated by 'Elric le Nécromancien', a novel by Michael Moorcock, Druillet made an audiovisual adaptation of the work with Michel Demuth, that was shown at the Museum of Decorative Arts in Paris in 1968.

In 1970, he joined Pilote magazine, and he resumed working on 'Lone Sloane', using an innovative page-setting and contrasted colors for the designs of gigantic structures, that earned him the nickname "space architect". A 'Lone Sloane' collection called 'Les six voyages de Lone Sloane' was published by Dargaud in 1972, and the character also starred in the story 'Délirius', that Druillet made with textwriter Jacques Lob in 1973. He then worked with Demuth again on the Elric-inspired 'Yragaël' (1973) and 'Urm le Fou' (1974). Additionally, he was present in Phénix with a black-and-white comic about the deformed and degenerated character 'Vuzz'.

Together with Bernard Farkas, Jean-Pierre Dionnet and Moebius, he founded the publishing house Les Humanoïdes Associés and the Métal Hurlant periodical in 1975. For this magazine, he created several short stories, that were later collected in the book 'Mirages' in 1976, as well as a second 'Vuzz' story ('Là-Bas', 1976), the 'Lone Sloane' installment 'Gail' (1977) and the first part of his Flaubert adaptation 'Salammbô' (1977).

In 1975 and 1976, he drew 'La Nuit', a cry of revolt after the death of his wife, that was published in Rock and Folk. He also continued working for Pilote with short stories, 'Nosferatu' (from 1979) and the sequel of 'Salammbô' (from 1981). As a comics writer, he worked with artists like Moebius, Gotlib, Alexis, Bihannic, Picotto and Didier Eberoni on stories published in Métal Hurlant, Pilote and Rock and Folk.

At the end of the 1970s, Druillet began expanding his activities and his focus became multimedia. Between 1978 to 1983, Druillet collaborated on Rolf Liebermann's 'Wagner Space Opera' in the Opera de Paris. Les Humanoïdes published his first illustration portfolio, '30 X 30 Druillet', in 1981. He has created bronze sculpture and worked in animation, producing the film 'Le Clone' in 1982. Druillet founded Space Art Création in 1984 and he made his first glass sculptures. He was also involved with the renovation and the architecture of the Parissien Porte de la Villette subway station. Experimenting with film, photography and painting, Philippe Druillet remains an innovative artist.