Max de Radiguès

Portrait Max de Radiguès
Max de Radiguès [© Christopher Diaz]

Max de Radiguès was born in Bruxelles in 1982. He graduated from the Institut Saint-Luc Bruxelles in 2004 and since then he has been working as an artist. He works in a studio in Brussels, which he shares with Flemish, French, and Swiss artists. Here he also met Wauter Mannaert, with whom he later created the graphic novel »Weegee« [2016; Eng. »Weegee: Serial Photographer«, 2016]. The story takes place in the late 1930s in the Lower East Side of New York City. Here, with his obligatory cigar, raincoat, and floppy hat, car radio tuned to police radio frequencies, Weegee aka Arthur Fellig is out photographing the nightlife: fires, accident sites, charred bodies, onlooking passersby. But Weegee is also an observer of the injustices and discrimination during the Great Depression.

For his graphic novel »Bâtard« [2017; Eng. »Bastard«, 2018], Radiguès was awarded the Prix de Lycéens at the prestigious Angoulême Comics Festival in 2018 and received the Prix du Polar SNCF, among other prizes. The story revolves around an unusual pair of gangsters: Eight-year-old Eugene is on the run with his mother May after an unprecedented robbery in the southwestern United States – with a trunk full of money. They had planned to use it to start a normal life. But now they must flee to safety from the police and an unscrupulous accomplice. The supposed thriller, which is reminiscent of »Bonny and Clyde« and also »Léon«, increasingly turns out to be a family drama and coming-of-age story. Through Radiguèsʼ breezy images with minimal strokes, the fast-paced narrative also repeatedly provides a break to take a breath in the dizzying maelstrom of violence and the protagonists’ struggle for survival.

The graphic novels for children aged ten and up, »L’île du disparu« [2018; Eng. »Vanisher’s Island«, 2020] and »Cheffe de meute« [2018; Eng. »Leader of the Pack«, 2020], as well as in »Le club des losers« [2021; tr: The Losers’ Club], all follow the various adventures of siblings Stig and Tilde. His most recent graphic novel, »Alerte 5« [2021], depicts the explosion of a NASA flight after takeoff, which is triggered by an act of sabotage. Because of the terrorist connection, alert level 5 is then declared, and the five astronauts in the base on Mars are completely cut off from the world and out of communication radius. The resulting emergency pushes everyone involved to their limits until the inevitable happens.

Max de Radiguès lives in Brussels, teaches comics studies at the École Supérieure des Arts Saint-Luc, and works as an editor for the independent comics publisher L’employé du moi and for Éditions Sarbacane.

Date: 2022