Mort reads Valentina by ED
Manuel Santo: Your father was born before WWI in 1919 in Uruguay and later went with his family to Buenos Aires In Argentina.
Patrícia Breccia: You're right. My father was born in Uruguay, in Pocitos and came to Argentina when he was a small boy. He loved Uruguay, he never wanted to become an Argentine citizen. About Uruguay's influence in his work, I don't know if he had it, because his childhood and his friends and life, have them in Buenos Aires and in his childhood in a small town called Mataderos. It was a small town filled with beautiful people and cutlers, that he visited a few months before his death.
I remember being a child and reading something about Ernie Pike character drawn by your father in 1959, "Mort Cinder" in 1964, "Che" in 1968, as well as "The Eternaut" In 1969 and In the following year "Evita", all of them with Hector Oesterheld script in magazines that I've read that came from Spain.
Could you tell us a bit about the companionship of these two genius, his origins and if Argentina politics has influenced these masterpieces that were drawn phenomally by him?
I think that he drew only some parts of Ernie Pike. He and Oesterheld began their work together with "Sherlock Time" that was published in "Hora Cero" in 1958.
The first time that they met was in 1955, in a party given in Hugo Pratt's house, when he lived in Argentina. After came the meetings at our town in Haedo, at the time that they were making "Mort Cinder" in a famous restaurant in the hystorical street named Corrientes. The restaurant's name was "El palacio de las papas fritas".
They really admired each other... But they weren't close friends, They didn't have that cumplicity among two friends...
In Hector's scripts, always existed a social background and in his latest stories, the political theme was obvious. My father's drawing skills were phenomenal. I agree with you.
In the 70's, I've read your father's genius with literary adaptations of American Writer H.P. Lovecraft in 1974 and some Edgar Allan Por stories in 1974, some of them had script by Argentine Writer Carlos Trillo.
Can you tell us a bit of the techniques that your father used to create these masterpieces?
When he drew Lovecraft with Norberto Buscaglia (that was his brother in law because of being married with my sister Cristina), my father used watercolor, monocopy, collage and ink china. There were some pages that he used only pencil.
If I remember correctly, some of his Poe's literary adaptations are in color, he used acrylic painting on them. When he used his literary adaptation of "Tell tale heart", he used only black and white and changed a bit the scenario of his story, because he thought that was necessary to tell the tale in his own way. He left only of the original story, the victim, the aggressor and the police (that are three identical men), to whom he cut their eyes, because as he told, the Law has no face.
In 1981 your father did several literary adaptations by Italian Writer Papini, Belgian Writer Jean Ray, American Writer Robert Louis Stevenson, Japanese Writer Lafcadio hearn and In the same year made his literary adaptation of short tales by German writers Grimm Bros in color.
Was your father a supernatural lover and used color to cause chills to the readers?
My father was addicted to the supernatural, but I don't think that he used color to cause chills. I think that he used it, because the story demanded it or because he simply wanted to put color in them... For him, each story and a blank page was a challenge for him to solve.
Your father worked a lot with Argentine Writer Carlos Trillo in the 70's and 80's in short stories and in a lovely story named "Buscavidas".
Can you tell us a bit about this particular story?
In "Buscavidas", my father drew little short tales about real life based in how we saw it, sometimes being silly, others being fantastic. It was the miserable life of small towns in Buenos Aires, the suburban area of his childhood.
Obviously, the stories were a bit grotesque, so the artwork couldn't be realistic, so he changed his technique and style, being it more expressionist and grotesque, using conventional elements to express himself better.
Perramus masterpiece with script by Juan Sasturain made in 1983 was a bit different from all his other previous works in graphic terms.
Do you think that this masterpiece also has Influences of a political state, since Argentina at the time was passing from a dictatorship to a democracy?
In "Perramus", he also used monocopy, collage and watercolor. It's a story made with grey tones.
It exists a clear political issue in Juan Sasturain's script, but my father didn't cared about politics or politicians. For him politicians, being them from the right, left or center party were all liarsvand thieves and under all the government politics, the poor were still poor, kids were dying of hungry and mysery was everywhere.
He was a sensitive man with injustice, because of that, he didn't loved politicians and he was right.
Your father made several literary adaptations from several writers like Argentine Ernesto Sabato's "report on the blind", Moral tales in 1991 based on Robert Louis Stevenson named "the other part of Dr. Jekyll" and "the good, the death and tango" with Richard Boucheron and in 1993 your father published literary adaptations of several well known writers of Latin America such as Argentine José Luís Borges, Uruguayan Juan Carlos Onetti, Mexican Juan Rolfo, Cuban Alejo Carpentier, Colombian Gabriel Garcia Marquez and Brazilian writer João Guimarães Rosa.
Was your father a fan of Classic Latin America literature masterpieces?
My father loved reading and he was a man with a huge cultural knowledge. (In my home at Haedo, we had more than 4.000 books that covered his Studio walls from the floor to the ceiling in each house that he had, obviously he was a fan of Latin American literature.
Your father was friends of artists such as Argentine José Muñoz and Italian Hugo Pratt (and made some works with both of them) and created an art school in Argentina.
Can you tell us a bit about this school?
Yes. The school was named "IDA" (instituto de directores de Arte). He founded it with other Argentine partners such as Soule, Pereyra, Borisoff, Spagnuolo, a little while after my mother's passing. We taught his comic books passion and Illustration.
It was a beautiful institute.. Many people from cultural scene visited it, because it had also an excellent movie theater. (That belonged to Rodríguez Jurado), it also had theatrical performances and other cultural activities.
2 or 3 times, Argentine Writer José Luís Borges gave there lectures with other Argentine writers such as Manuel Mujica Lainez, Ernesto Sábato among others.
In it, we could see tango concerts, presentation of books and writers, painters, exhibitions.. So, the artistic and cultural level was real high. It was wonderful.
I know that you're also a graphic artist and I love your work. Do you think that your artwork came with your father's genes or were you and your brother Enrique influenced because you were gazing your father's work?
I think that the love and the skills for art in our family is a genetic thing, because my grandfather also drew and my uncle Humberto also (he was my father's elder brother), but they weren't professionals.
But of course, while growing up as a family where we saw our father drawing all the time, made our love for this art form become bigger.
Can you tells us a bit of how was your father as a family man and a human being?
My father was a quiet man, sensible and with a great sense of humour, an intelligent one.. (We were laughing with him all the time). He was real gentle, kind and protected us (but didn't intruded in our life). He became widow when he was young and had to take care of three little kids, I was real small then, Enrique and my sister were teenagers. It wasn't easy for him dealing with all this, lots of sadness in our home, but he made it fade away and put us in the right track as he could, while doing it the best way. He was a wonderful person and very wise.
How was it for you to grew up in Argentina with a comic book icon such as your father?
Well, I was aware, since I was a child what was comic books as a genre and especially in Argentina, that my father was one of the best ever, (if not the best).
In the beginning for me was something natural having a father that was a well known artist, like for other friends of mine having a father that was famous as a doctor, with time, I realized that being Breccia's daughter could be something wonderful and difficult at the same time, because my father was admired by lots of people, respected and loved, being also despised by other medíocre people that exists in any social environment.
Do you think that your father's bibliography is well edited and published or someone could do new books with your father's masterpieces, being him the genius that he was?
Well, I think that my father's books deserve to be published and in deluxe editions.
There are some beautiful ones and well edited, but my desire and my brother and sister have the same desire, is to see his books like he wanted him to see them.