Italy’s Guido Crepax is one of the most internationally acclaimed cartoonists in the world. Instantly recognizable, his work is characterized by its erotically charged stylistic approach and seriousness of purpose. Valentina, his most famous character, was based on his wife Luisa, and the actresses Louise Brooks (Pandora’s Box) and Anna Karina (star of many Jean-Luc Godard’s films). Arguably the strongest and most independent female character in European comics up till this time, Crepax’s depiction of Valentina’s sensuality was so sophisticated that it single-handedly legitimized the erotic element in European comics. Only a handful of Crepax’s works have been reprinted in English, none currently available.
Crepax: Dracula, Frankenstein, and Other Horror Stories features, in addition to the artist’s unique take on the eponymous literary works by Bram Stoker and Mary Shelley, a half dozen Valentina stories from the ’60s and ’70s, several never before published, and influenced by contemporary fashion, architecture, and the French New Wave. Published in an oversized, deluxe coffee table format, this first of ten volumes in the complete works of Crepax will be a revelation to American readers.
"Guido Crepax was one of the most visually inventive cartoonists and graphic artists of his generation—every page is a stunning invention, and his influence is still being felt. Sexy, stylish, elegant, strange—the new Fantagraphics Crepax library editions are the definitive collection of this master’s work for today’s audience." — Paul Pope
"These pages show Crepax's skill for creating detailed environments, distinct characters and fashions, and bold graphic compositions." — The A.V. Club
"The Milanese graphics maestro Guido Crepax (1933–2003) brought a sinuous, sensuous line to his horror comics, now reproduced in a beautiful new collection from Fantagraphics. The tales collected here capture the contradictions of the Cold War Sixties with a swinging verve summed up in the helter-skelter typography of one panel: 'FREE SEX! ATOMIC BOMB! POP!'" — The Village Voice
"Crepax's rough but fluid black-and-white art marries Jazz Age excess with psychedelic science fiction, illustrating stories built on their own oft-confusing dream logic. The tales recall the work of avant-garde film makers such as Alejandro Jodorowsky, presenting sometimes baffling narratives that are idiosyncratically beautiful and well worth exploring." — Publishers Weekly
"Guido Crepax operates at one of those blurry edges of art that can be appreciated for its cultural merit, historical relevancy or blunt sexual titillation—or maybe all of the above." — Paste Magazine
"The Italian cartoonist Guido Crepax has been ill-served with English translations. But now Fantagraphics are embarking on a major publishing project, starting in March with his takes on the classics of horror fiction. One to file alongside your Jean Rollin DVDs." — Herald Scotland