Berlin by Pascal LefevreBerlin by Pascal Lefevre

Pascal Lefèvre is a renowned Belgian comics historian and theorist. He wrote history by being the first person in Flanders to write a doctorate about comics, 'Suske en Wiske in de krant (1945-1971), and graduate with it. Over the years he published several essays and books about comics. He has analysed the medium from both historical as well as artistic perspectives. Lefèvre was connected as a researcher with the Belgian Comics Center in Brussels and contributed to various documentaries and expositions. He is one of the few comics theorists who actually made some comics himself. Between 1984 and 1986 he wrote the script to 'O Dierbaar Vlaanderen...' , a comic strip illustrated by Katrien van Schuylenbergh. In 1995 Lefèvre drew some short experimental comics himself under the title 'Berlin'. 

Early life and career
Pascal Lefèvre was born in Tienen, Belgium, in 1963. He grew up reading all the familiar Belgian comics classics. In the early 1980s Lefèvre studied Social Sciences and American Studies at the University of Leuven. He was editor of the local student magazine Veto, where he scripted a comic strip, 'O Dierbaar Vlaanderen...' (translation: 'O Dear Flanders', 1984-1986), illustrated by Katrien van Schuylenbergh. The humoristic comic appeared as a weekly serial. Another comics artist who published in Veto around the same time was Evert Dierickx. Lefèvre was so passionate about comics that he devoted his master paper to the medium. His thesis, 'De selekterende stripuitgevers. Een onderzoek naar de gatekeeping bij de grote stripuitgeverijen Lombard en Dupuis' (1986) investigated the gatekeeping study of Belgian comics publishers Lombard and Dupuis. 

Research and lectures
After graduation he became a researcher for the Belgian public TV channel BRTN (nowadays the VRT). In 1989 the Belgian Comic Strip Center opened in Brussels, where he worked as a research assistant. Between 1996 and 1999 he was also part-time scientific advisor to the museum. He gave several lectures about comics and visual media at various art departments of Flemish university colleges in Brussels, Antwerp and Genk. Apart from comics Lefèvre also conducted a research project about broadsheets for Het Huis van Alijn, a folklore museum in Ghent. In 2007 he created the video opera 'Burning History' (2007). Since 2008 he is a affiliated researcher at the University of Leuven and publishes his own blog since July 2009. 

Lefévre has written many essays and books about comics. Together with Jan Baetens he published 'Strips anders lezen' ('Reading comics in a different way') (1993) and 'Pour une lecture moderne de la bande dessinée' ('For a modern reading of comics') (1993). Both books gave a more literary and artistic insight about the medium and were published by the Belgian Center of Comics in Brussels. He and Morgan Di Salvia co-wrote 'Strip en illustratie in België. Een stand van zaken en de sociaal economische situatie van de sector'/'Bande dessinée et illustration en Belgique. Etats des lieux et situation socio-économique du secteur' (2010), a treatise about comics and illustrations in Belgium and their social economical dimension. He went on a more historical route with 'Forging A New Medium, The Comic Strip in the 19th Century' (1998), written in collaboration with Charles Dierick.

Apart from these general studies he and Yves Kerremans also wrote '50 Jaar Nero, kroniek van een dagbladverschijnsel' (1997), a chronological study of every album in Marc Sleen's "Nero" series at that point, to commemorate its 50th anniversary. He wrote articles to celebrate the 50th anniversary of Willy Vandersteen's 'Suske en Wiske' (in 1995) and Morris' 'Lucky Luke' (in 1996) too. In 2003 Lefèvre earned his doctorate in Social Science at the University of Leuven with a theoretical analysis of Willy Vandersteen's comic strip 'Suske en Wiske'. His thesis, 'Suske en Wiske in de krant (1945-1971). Een theoretisch kader voor een vormelijke analyses van strips', dealt with the newspaper publications of 'Suske en Wiske' during the period Vandersteen was still personally inolved with the scripts and drawings. Lefèvre noticed that the format Vandersteen had to use (two strips a day) influenced his way of storytelling just as much his cultural and historical background. The thesis was furthermore notable as the first doctorate about comics in Flanders. 

In 2018 Lefèvre published 'Beeld en Visuele Waarneming. Een Interdisciplinaire Waarneming' (2018) about our modern-day visual culture. 

Apart from scripting 'Oh Dierbaar Vlaanderen...' (1984-1986) Lefèvre also made a comic strip of his own. In 1996 he drew 'Berlin', a series of very loose drawings which could be described as a pantomime comic, by lack of any dialogue. They appeared in issue #4 of the French magazine Frigobox. 

Homonym confusion
Pascal Lefèvre should not be confused with a Walloon politician and member of the city council of Sint-Pieters Woluwe (°1959), nor an obscure Flemish cyclist (°1971) from Bruges.

Series and books by Pascal Lefèvre in stock in the Lambiek Webshop:


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