Interview Roberto Baldazzini
You are an artist. Who are your main influences?
Since when I was little I’ve been a great comic reader, of many and all kinds, the most loved ones were for me Flash Gordon by Alex Raymond, Prince Valiant by Hal Foster, but also the fetish imagination of Willie and Eric Stanton. And also Tintin and Lucky Luke, and between the Italian authors, Roberto Raviola a.k.a Magnus is my most favorite. I’ve dedicated a peculiar attention to the reading of popular photo storybooks, with their broken hearted stories! In Literature I’ve read De Sade, Wuthering Heights and Last Exit to Brooklyn.
Can you tell something about your career?
I began dreaming to be a comic author since when I was 14, ten years later, in 1982, I started my professional career. I did not just create comic characters, but I also worked as illustrator. In commercials, and as figurative artist, I exposed my works in various exhibits in Italy and abroad. I’m still in this activity, my work is a mix of comic and art, getting inspired by the popular imagination.
What is your opinion on comics culture in Italy?
Italy is a beautiful country, where one can smell culture in the streets of big and small cities, we Italians are so creative and great entrepreneurs, not for nothing, in Italy since the end of ww2 there exists a solid publishing house, Sergio Bonelli Editore, a colossus in the comic production for the youngest, I’m working with them at the moment. Disney Italia is much important because it still publishes today, comic strips of the classical Disney characters (Mickey and Donald), like no other else publishing house in the world was able to do. And then comes Astorina, that publishes Diabolik, an historic comic character belonging to the sixties. This is all about Italian popular comic world, then come much many smaller independent houses, but very creative. I think comics are starting to attract a more adult target, becoming a language able to tell important stories and dramas, of life lived, of history and geography, as the most exciting romance!
Which topics do you really like to draw?
The cinema have always been a great source of inspiration for many comic adventures I’ve drawn, most of all their actors. Right now I’m drawing a story named Hollywoodland (texts by Michele Masiero) set in the Hollywood’s twenties. Another genre I’ve dealt with is the Erotic. Telling about eros in comics, in its most extreme shades, the fetish world, the sadomasochism, the transsexualism, dangerous relationships, but also the getaway through the erotic imaginary in future dreamlands.
Which artists (any art form) should be more famous?
When I realized the dream of making comics was coming true, there was nothing of what today exists: technology and communication. I felt alone and I actually was so back then, today we have the opportunity of having a simplified contact to grow in relation to our art, whatever it is, for ourselves and for leaking it to others. We are living a very important time period of openness to the world. The comic is an expressive language, not easy for all to understand, but fascinating for all its aspects, it can assume a didactic and educational form, we must absolutely consider that as a form of art. I find awesome the expression of the street art, and it is just at its very beginning, it could really change the face of the earth!
Roberto Baldazzini's translator is Davide Parri.
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