Chilean Comics

In 2008, the Fine Arts Museum presented its first ever exhibition of comics and graphic humor in its halls.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009  
Condorito Condorito (Photo: Réne Ríos Boettiger, Pepo)

The acknowledgement of comics in the national art world is recent, though the professional tradition dates back to a romantic painter, the landscaper and caricaturist Antonio Smith, who studied at the Painting Academy in the mid-19th century.

The most international Chilean comic book character is Condorito, a character created by Pepo that will now celebrate its 60th year as the most popular comic book.

Currently there is a blurred line between the press and the artistic comic, with widely recognized artists. This is the case of Fernando Krahn, who has already had a solo show in the Fine Arts Museum with the poetic nature of his dramagrams, which have garnered praise in both the United States as well as in Europe.

Marcela Trujillo, Maliki, is a painter, comic illustrator and 2D animator who began publishing in the 1980s and who has also displayed her work  in the Museum of Contemporary Art. Rodrigo Salinas, a member of the collective La Nueva Gráfica Chilena (the New Chilean Graphic Art), is younger than she is and expresses his irreverence in diverse media that integrate graphic art and installations.


There is a long tradition of illustrative narrative in Chile, which is expressed both in political satire as well as in comic books and series. Those who stand out in the press today with their editorial cartoons are Jimmy Scott, Hervi, Rufino and Mico, while when it comes to adventure comics there is the magazine Caleuche and the stories of Mampato and Ogú, by Themo Lobos, who were also the protagonists of the first Chilean feature-length animated film.

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