Renaat Demoen

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Renaat Demoen (11 June 1914 – 1982) was a Belgian illustrator and comics creator.

Biography[edit]

Renaat Demoen worked for a number of publishers, including Lannoo, when he met Nonkel Fons, editor-in-chief of the youth publications of Averbode, in 1942. Demoen soon becomes one of the main illustrators for the magazines, and lives at the medieval gate house of the Averbode Abbey until his marriage in 1968, when he moves to the village of Averbode.[1]

Demoen was a self-taught illustrator and layouter. When the magazine Zonneland reappeared after the second World War, he redesigned the magazine, provided most of the illustrations, and created a comic for the front page. He created 15 comics between 1945 and 1959, but only a few of those were published in book format at the time.[1] His main work are the illustrations for Zonneland and Petits Belges until the early 1970s, and a few hundred covers for the Vlaamse Filmpjes. Furthermore, he illustrated more than 400 books, mainly destined for the youth. Most of these were published by Averbode as well, but also for Opdebeeck and other Flemish publishers. Two of these books were written by Demoen.

As a comics creator, his early works, from 1945 to 1950, are remarkable due to their experiments with page lay-outs and coloring, and their strong stories. Spits de Durver was one of the few Flemish comics about the war, and described the adventures of a boy whose father was deported to Germany. Following stories were mainly based around the figures of Johnny and Annie, but were less realistic and more escapist. A final masterpiece was De Zwarte Veroveraar (The Black Conqueror), with a story by John Flanders, about the life of Pierre-Jean De Smet. He was one of the main early comics authors in Flanders, together with Marc Sleen, Willy Vandersteen and Bob de Moor, but due to his shorter career and limited audience, he has become largely forgotten.[2]

He also created the images for the Druivelaar, a daily calendar which was very popular in Flanders. As of 2007, his images are still used here.

For his own pleasure, he also painted, both landscapes and brutally coloured scenes with gnomes.[2]

Bibliography[edit]

  • List of 326 books illustrated by Demoen and published by Averbode
  • Comics created by Demoen which were published as albums:
Title Year Scenarist Editor Remarks
Het geheim van Stormwind 1948 Nonkel Fons Averbode Appeared in French as Le Mystère de Hurlevent
Het geheim rond den spookput 1949 René Adriaensens Averbode Appeared in French as La Marmite du dragon
De staf van den tovenaar 1950 Marie-Hélène Averbode Appeared in French as Le Bâton du féticheur
De kat met de gouden staart 1951 Renaat Demoen Averbode
Auto-stop 1953 Nonkel Fons Averbode
Het geheim van het Riethof 1956 Nonkel Fons Averbode
De zwarte veroveraar 1978 John Flanders De Dageraad Reprint of an old story

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Ghesquière, Rita; Quaghebeur, Patricia (eds.). Averbode, een uitgever apart. 1877-2002. Kadoc Artes 6 (in Dutch). Averbode: Universitaire Pers Leuven and Uitgeverij Averbode. pp. 368–370. ISBN 90-5867-232-8. 
  2. ^ a b De Laet, Danny. De Vlaamse stripauteurs (in Dutch). Antwerp: De Dageraad. pp. 74–79 and 205–213. ISBN 90-6371-131-X. 

Sources[edit]

  • Béra, Michel; Denni, Michel; and Mellot, Philippe (2002): "Trésors de la Bande Dessinée 2003-2004". Paris, Les éditions de l'amateur. ISBN 2-85917-357-9
  • Matla, Hans: "Stripkatalogus 9: De negende dimensie". Panda, Den Haag, 1998. ISBN 90-6438-111-9

External links[edit]

  • Biography at Comiclopedia, with some images