Arthur Berckmans

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Arthur Berckmans
Born (1929-05-03) 3 May 1929 (age 89)
Leuven, Belgium
Area(s)Writer, Artist
Notable works
Awardsfull list

Arthur Berckmans (born 3 May 1929), better known as Berck, is a Belgian comics author, best known for Sammy.


Arthur Berckmans was born in Leuven in 1929.[1] He studied drawing at the Art academy of Leuven and at the Institut Saint Luc in Brussels. His first job as an illustrator was in 1948 for the Flemish Jesuit magazine Pro Apostolis. He also illustrated some youth novels, and started to work at PubliArt, a publicity division of Le Lombard, where he made many drawings and a few publicitary comics, appearing in many Belgian newspapers and magazines.

In 1958, Berck was asked by Tintin magazine to collaborate with René Goscinny on a new comical series, Strapontin. The series became a moderate success, and Berck created a few other series for the magazine, the most notable being Rataplan.[1]

In the meantime, he also started working for Zonneland, the youth magazine of Altiora Averbode, the editor of the abbey of Averbode. In later years, he contributed to Sjors, one of the major Dutch comics magazines, where he created the series Lowietje.

But his main breakthrough came when he worked for Spirou magazine. His first series, Mulligan, did not make much of an impact, but when he teamed up with Raoul Cauvin for Sammy, a series about an unlikely pair of bodyguards in Chicago at the time of Al Capone and Eliot Ness, he quickly became one of the more popular artists of the magazine, and the albums got impressive sales. Berck ceased his work on all other series to focus solely on Sammy.

In 1994, Berck announced that he would retire. While this is usual in Belgium at the age of 65, it was an almost unprecedented move for a comics artist. Sammy was continued by the experienced artist Jean-Pol.[1]


Series Years Volumes Scenarist Editor
Strapontin 1962–1975 9 René Goscinny and Jacques Acar Le Lombard and Dargaud
De Sjeik van de Woestijn 1964 1 Yves Duval Parein
Rataplan 1965–1973 9 Yves Duval Le Lombard and Dargaud
De Zwartepinken 1970 2 Maurits Renders Altiora Averbode
Sammy 1972–1994 31 Raoul Cauvin Dupuis
Rolf Kauka's Mischa 1972–1975 0 Studio Berck Kauka
De Donderpadjes 1973–1981 2 Rudy Jansen Oberon and De Dageraad
Lowietje 1976–1982 7 Raoul Cauvin Oberon
Lombok 1978–1985 3 Daniël Janssens Standaard Uitgeverij and Bédéscope
Mulligan 1983 1 Raymond Macherot and Yvan Delporte Bédéscope
Het H.A.P.-mysterie 1986–1987 4 Raoul Cauvin De Ruijter

This bibliography only lists the comics Berck made which were published as an album in French or Dutch. He further made many short stories, illustrations, and comics for magazines only (e.g. 59 short comics featuring Mischa). His work has been translated into Danish,[2] Finnish,[3] German[4] and Spanish.



  1. ^ a b c De Weyer, Geert (2005). "Berck". In België gestript, pp. 91-92. Tielt: Lannoo.
  2. ^ Michigan State University Libraries. "Index to the Comic Art Collection: "Béraldi" to "Berets"". Archived from the original on 23 February 2007. Retrieved 13 February 2007.
  3. ^ "Sammy Day". Archived from the original on 7 June 2011. Retrieved 13 February 2007.
  4. ^ "Sammy & Jack (Salleck Publications)". Retrieved 13 February 2007.
  5. ^ "STRIP Turnhout". Archived from the original on 23 February 2007. Retrieved 13 February 2007.


  • Béra, Michel; Denni, Michel; and Mellot, Philippe: "Trésors de la Bande Dessinée 1999-2000". Les éditions de l'amateur, Paris, 1998. ISBN 2-85917-258-0
  • Matla, Hans: "Stripkatalogus 9: De negende dimensie". Panda, Den Haag, 1998. ISBN 90-6438-111-9

External links[edit]