City of Sound is about cities, design, architecture, music, media, politics and more. Written by Dan Hill since 2001.

A highlight of a recent weekend in Paris was the Tintin/Hergé exhibition at the Pompidou. [Ends tomorrow! 19 Feb 2007]. (Far more engaging than the Yves Klein exhibition on the top floor. Several of the greatest exhibitions I’ve ever been to have been at the Pompidou – such as 2001’s supreme ‘Hitchcock and Art’ – but Klein wasn’t even close. Good to see Shigeru Ban’s cardboard studio whilst up there, though.)

Hergé is a smallish exhibition, on the lower ground floor, but thoroughly enjoyable. A huge set of sketches by the great artist, exploring everything from early renderings of the characters, to the entire production process – from furious sketching to beautifully precise outlining to gorgeous colouring. Such confident, bold line drawing is wonderful to see, as the original ink on paper. Vector precise. Careering down one wall, all the covers of the weekly magazine, with the beautiful typography of the time, evolving throughout the ’30s. Other related work and artefacts by Hergé – including the most wonderful notifications of change of address I’ve ever seen! – are pinned around a central chamber, in which the entirety of a favourite of mine, ‘The Blue Lotus’, is posted up, page by page.

Photos were forbidden, so only managed a few:





See also this fantastic information graphic of which characters appear in which books, plotted over time. Beautifully done. [Cllck for larger version]


A particularly lovely aspect of Hergé’s work is the care and attention with which he drew objects, such as architecture, cars, furniture. Barista recently pointed us at this detailed collection of cars from Tintin books. And whilst in Paris, I chanced across another great reference, as if two events, two spaces in the city, had been suddenly linked via the keyword ‘Hergé’. At the humbling and startling collection of Jean Prouvé, Perriand, Jeanneret furniture at Gallerie Patrick Seguin in Bastille, a small reproduction from a Tintin book on the wall reveals Prof. Calculus and Tintin amidst a commotion in a crowded drawing room, falling off lovingly reproduced Prouvé chairs, actual examples of which stood in front of me. Le visiteur, I think:




Tintin/Hergé exhibition, Pompidou
Gallerie Patrick Seguin


2 responses to “Tintin exhibition, Pompidou, Paris + Prouvé”

  1. Adam Richardson Avatar

    I love Tin Tin. I love the Pompidou’s exhibits. Crap, missed it!


  2. Martin Belam Avatar

    Wow, it looks great. I’m dead jealous. I went to The Adventures of Tintin at Sea at the National Maritime Museum a few years back, which dwelt a lot on the detail herge put into illustrating the boats and ships in the series – – likewise no photos allowed though


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