Icons Collection: Tintin at home

Dossier ~ Wednesday 12th September 2018
© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018

After escaping the clutches of Mitsuhirato and exploring the seabed amidst sharks, the time has come for Tintin to take some rest.

Our third "Icon" has Tintin sitting comfortably in an armchair, a book in his hands and Snowy asleep at his feet.

AVAILABLE HERE

The scene is from The Broken Ear.

The story begins with the theft of a sacred tribal object at the Museum of Ethnography. Tintin soon gets involved alongside the detectives, the Thompsons. From the outset, he seeks to know more about the country of Arumbayas, region of origin of the precious statue.

As a conscientious journalist, our little reporter meticulously documents his findings to prepare his report for filing to the “papers”.

Books are very important to our hero. The reader discovers that Tintin has a well-stocked library of books as numerous as they are varied. Moreover, when he discovers that his apartment was robbed at the beginning of The Secret of the Unicorn, he is devastated. The first thing that alarms him is the state of his books.

© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018

Tintin also enjoys adventure novels. In The Castafiore Emerald, we see him immersed in Robert Louis Stevenson's, Treasure Island.

The book consulted by Tintin in The Broken Ear is a kind of travel diary written by an imaginary ethnologist. For the anecdote, there are some differences on the cover of the book between the first release of the adventure in Le Petit Vingtième in 1935 and the album version eight years later.

© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018

To make reading more enjoyable, Tintin settles into a comfortable club chair. Its colour suggests that it is simply covered with fabric or velvet and not full grain sheep leather traditionally used for this type of seat.

Tintin has simple tastes, his furniture and his apartment testify to this: they reflect the character of its owner. Apart from his books, he does not seem to attach much importance to material things. We must also recognise that between adventures, the valiant reporter does not really have the opportunity to stay very long at home to enjoy his residence

© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018

For the design of the chair, Hergé has chosen fundamental shapes and geometrically refined them. We could see the influence of the Art Deco style. More simply, Hergé will no doubt have sought to put together the chair in its most crucial form. As is often the case, the draftsman proposes the general evocation of an object rather than its realistic representation.

Our 3 D team wanted to respect this design; this is why the edges of the model are sharp and very "clear line." There was no question of adding extra details, such as seams or bulk due to padding.

Visually, we insisted that Tintin himself be presented as an icon. It was therefore necessary to distance oneself a little from the drawing and the story to arrive at a generic Tintin, which is not attached to a specific era or album. The first representations of Tintin come with a round face and childish proportions. So we chose to give it a more "adult" look, that is to say, closer to the last albums and the general image that we have of him.

Like the statuette of Tintin hiding in the Chinese vase, it is a much appreciated classic image. There are probably many reasons for this.

It is primarily an atypical image. Tintin is still moving, but for once, he decides to take a break, to breathe a bit between two hectic pursuits. He and Snowy are at home, content! There is something peaceful and comforting about this scene.

The base is round to put the characters in a circle, like a protective privacy bubble that reinforces the "cocoon" side of the scene.

© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018

Everything is calm, only the title of the book evokes the journey.

When we detach the image from the story and observe it alone, we have the feeling that Tintin is pensive and that the book he has just closed makes him dream of his next expedition. Because the adventure is never far away and if Tintin seems to stop for a moment, it is because he is already preparing the next one.

And the adventure goes through the book.

Basically, this is perhaps what particularly affects us: Tintin dreams of adventures, he resembles us and reminds us of our own image as a reader.

Available in October 2018 on boutique.tintin.com

© Hergé / Moulinsart 2018
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