Tuesday, November 14, 2006

GRUAGA: The Fantasy World of Alex Nino

Gruaga: The Fifth Corner of the Earth, was ALEX NINO's first attempt at writing fantasy novel. Although a relative beginner in the comics industry in the 1960s, Nino proved that he was a master not only of fantasy illustration, but writing as well.

Here in Gruaga, a young Nino attempts to enter the select class of great Filipino artists who not only write but also illustrate his stories. It was a bold attempt, at a time when some of the best artist-writers in Filipino comics were still at their heyday, including Nestor Redondo, FV Coching, and Fred Alcala.
Nino, however, succeded well and even the great Redodndo was able to remark "He is someone we must watch".

A few years later, Nino was on his way to international stardom as American comics publishers discovered his rare talent in fantasy and horror illustration.

I have several issues of Pioneer Komiks that contained several installments of GRUAGA, and I would regularly feature these rare pages here as part of my attempt to give due honor to one of the greatest illustrators of all time. Cover of Pioneer Komiks #113 by the great Filipino international illustrator Alex Nino.