Art and story

Born in Nice on 5 January 1963, Philippe Bercovici acquired, after a hard-fought struggle, the title of the fastest cartoonist in the entire industry, illustrating on his own and using various styles all of the comic strips and illustrations on the 48 pages of an edition of Spirou in 1999. He rarely occupied less than three to five pages in a normal edition.

Spotted at the age of 13 after showing his work to Raoul Cauvin at a book-signing session in Nice, his work was immediately published in "Carte Blanche" and in the cartoon section of Spirou before the scriptwriter offered him the job of illustrating "Les Grandes Amours contrariées" in 1978.

Flowing, effective and dynamic, his style moved away from cartoon to achieve a new form of comic strip and enormous skill in any subject. Launched together with Cauvin in 1981, "Les Femmes en Blanc" quickly gained best-seller status and were his most popular series.

We can list, among many others, "Robinson et Zoé" (for Gomme from 1982 onwards), "Kostar le Magnifique" (Circus, 1984), "Barnabé, envoyé spécial" and "Big Bang Orchestra" (Je Bouquine), the "Grand Panic Circus" (Pif), "Testar le Robot" (at Fleurus), "Téléfaune" (for Dargaud in 1993), all series for which François Corteggiani provided the scripts. With Yann, he animated the very soviet adventures of "Leonid et Spoutnika" for Marsu-Productions. From then on, François Gilson regularly wrote the strips for "Cactus Club", a surreal satire based on holiday camps and their Kind Organisers. He also produced "Eve et Adam" with Gerrit de Jager for the Dutch market.

It was under the guise of "Thelonius" that he illustrated the first 100 strips for "Boss", a series devised by the infamous Zidrou to ridicule the very respectable chief editor of the weekly newspaper who paid them for their silly remarks. Alas, quickly recognised for his incomparable style and the speed at which he delivered his work one hour after having received the script, he was forced to take up his normal name again for the albums in this series.