Casa L’Inc is a small gallery on a street corner in Palermo. The building’s exterior may be unassuming but the large comic strip mural tells of the hushed revolution going on inside. Only in their first year, Casa L’Inc projects have roused interest in artists and the public.
The space was created to showcase the work of illustrators, comic strip artists and cartoonists to the art world. A world which gallery curator, Juan Lanusse, feels many of the artists have been excluded from. “In Argentina we have big artists that are famous world wide, who have published many books but have never had their work exhibited in places like arteBA, that’s incredible”, Lanusse says. “They have been outside of this community so the idea of the gallery is the to break that barrier and create channels of communication for the artists.”
The current exhibition at the gallery, Samurai, is by Argentine artist Sebastián Dufour. It features original works from his recently published book by the same name. The two rooms of the gallery are filled with black and white paintings and drawings, depicting traditional Japanese samurai. The distinctive images are defined by their use of light. Dufour’s approach is simple but the scenes leave their impression long after you’ve left the gallery.
Dufour is gaining notoriety in Argentina for his signature style and you can expect to see a lot more of his work. He has recently been hired as an illustrator for La Nación newspaper. His graphic novel ‘Tango Cruzado’ is currently being published in Fierro, a monthly magazine from Página 12. The work has also been picked up by a French company and is due to be published in its entirety in the near future.
The establishment has also opened its doors to exhibit native artists that have rarely been seen in Argentina. “The last exhibition was by two Argentine artists that live in Barcelona; Ed and Maxi Luccini”, Lanusse tells me. “It was the first exhibition they did in Argentina although they work a lot in Europe… Many people here have never seen their work because their books are not published in Argentina. It was great they could show their work to their family and friends in their country after a successful career abroad.”
Casa L’Inc includes three other elements; a publishing house, a shop and associated agents for upcoming artists. Well-known Argentine artist Liners is working with the gallery to print a collection of the exhibited works at Casa L’Inc. By publishing the works of well and lesser-known artists, the project hopes to continue to document and celebrate the talent that exists in the field of the graphic novel in Argentina and abroad.