Monday, December 8, 2014

Borrowed Beauty?

Twice over the last four months, the pop-culture blog Pulp International has exhibited paperback book fronts featuring the work of French illustrator James Hodges--first here, and now here. That second post collects 15 of Hodges’ Détective Pocket covers, most if not all of which were published during the 1960s. There’s no question that Hodges created eye-catching book façades, but three of those Pulp International showcases bear a rather startling resemblance to work that has appeared before on this page by other artists.

Above, for instance, you will see Hodges’ effort for Festival des Maccabees, which looks more than a little like the work Harry Bennett did for Alone at Night, a 1963 Gold Medal paperback by Vin Packer (aka Marijane Meaker). Below, Hodges’ cover from Razzia Sur le Drogue is compared with the 1960 Bantam edition of Ross Macdonald’s The Three Roads (which I once applauded here), while his art for Pieges a Loup is matched up with Mitchell Hooks’ front for The Long Saturday Night, by Charles Williams (Gold Medal, 1962). Far be it from me to suggest Hodges supplemented his imagination by cribbing from the work of American book-cover artists, but …

You can ogle more of Hodges’ artistry here.

1 comment:

René Claude said...

In french we're saying "c'est troublant".