200 . Pepita: Inoue meets Gaudi by Takehiko Inoue

Pepita: Inoue meets Gaudi by Takehiko Inoue. Translated by Emi Louie-Mishikawa

Rating: (4/5)

(US) - (Canada) - (UK)

Apr 16, 2013, vizmedia, 108 pgs

Age: 16+

"Takehiko Inoue (Vagabond, Slam Dunk, Real) is one of Japan’s leading manga artists, and he has long been obsessed with the architecture of Antoni Gaudi.  Pepita is a travel memoir about Inoue’s travels to Catalan, the people he meets, and the stunning architecture he experiences. It’s also an art book of the highest quality, constructed and framed by a leading practitioner of Japanese comics."

Received a review copy from Simon & Schuster Canada.

A famous manga artist keeps a journal while he visits Spain to see first-hand the buildings of a famous architect he greatly admires.  This book appealed to me right away because I love art journals, travelogues and architecture!  It is not exactly what I expected but enjoy it, I did!  Described best perhaps as a coffee table book, this is a very visual book full of illustrations, photographs and (something I really appreciated) photographs the author has altered by illustrating over them.  I had no idea who the Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi (1852-1926) was, nor was I familiar with any of his buildings before reading the book.  However, through the author's love of his subject we get a good appreciation of Gaudi's work and the man, briefly, through his work.  Informationally, the reader is introduced to the work of Gaudi as it is discussed through the eyes of an appreciative artist.  I highly enjoyed both the text and the illustrations.  The text is written in a variety of forms: paragraphs, illustration/photo blurbs, short sentences and an engaging flowing style I found read like poetry though it was in prose not verse.  Truly, one of the most unusual books I've come across this year but one I highly appreciated aesthetically.  I think the book is going to appeal to fans of the author/artist, aspiring artists, Gaudi/architecture connoisseurs and art journal enthusiasts.

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