Tarzan by Burne Hogarth
Tarzan of the Apes (1972)

The American artist Burne Hogarth specialized in drawing the dynamic anatomy of the human body and animals, as can be best seen in his rendition of 'Tarzan'. He studied at the Chicago Art Institute from age 12, and got his first cartoon job at 15, when he became the assistant at the Associated Editors Syndicate. At this time, he was assigned to illustrate a series called 'Famous Churches of the World'. In 1929, Hogarth created his first comic strip for the Barnet Brown Company, called 'Ivy Hemmanhaw'. A year later, he came up with 'Odd Occupations and Strange Accidents' for Ledd Features Syndicate.

Tarzan by Burne Hogarth
Tarzan (30 October 1938)

After a couple of years working as an editor, advertising artist and panel illustrator, Hogarth found employment with the King Features Syndicate in 1934. Now located in New York, he did the pirate strip 'Pieces of Eight' with scripts by Charles Driscoll, starting in 1935. Two years later, Hogarth had a breakthrough when the United Features Syndicate hired him to take over the 'Tarzan' strip from Harold Foster. He drew the 'Tarzan' Sunday page for twelve years, from 1937 to 1945 and from 1947 to 1950, bringing it to new artistic heights.

Tarzan, by Burne Hogarth
Tarzan of the Apes (1949)

During the 1945-1947 interlude, due to a dispute with his syndicate, Hogarth moved over to the Robert Hall Syndicate, where he created 'Drago', the adventures of a young Argentine nobleman battling post war Nazis in South America. While being in his second run on 'Tarzan', he additionally created 'Miracle Jones' for United Features, his first and only humorous series. In 1950 he completely abandoned his own comics production, to devote all his time to teaching at the Cartoonists and Illustrators School (later the School of Visual Arts), which he had founded with Silas Rhodes back in 1947. Hogarth taught at this school until 1970, and also authored a series of books on drawing and anatomy.

Drago, by Burne Hogarth
Drago

In 1972, years after his final professional comics work, Hogarth returned to the field with a new 'Tarzan' book, adapting Burroughs first novel, 'Taran of the Apes'. This was followed in 1976 by 'Jungle Tales of Tarzan', a collection of four new 'Tarzan' stories by Hogarth. In the 1990s, he returned to the field once again with the mini-series 'Morphos the Shapechanger' with Harry Hurwitz, that was published by Dark Horse. Burne Hogarth completed only one issue however. He passed away in Angoulême in 1996, after suffering from a heart attack.

Morphos by Burne Hogarth
Morphos the Shapechanger

Last updated: 2014-08-19

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