Monday: Blaise had a good night. Yet, putting on his first slipper, he realized that something weird had happened to him. “
The Hassle of Blaise Raphaële Frier and Julien Martinière.
Editions of the Atelier du Poisson soluble
The Salon du livre and the youth press, which opens this Wednesday in Montreuil, has awarded the first prize to the incredible and crazy album of Raphaële Frier and Julien Martinière, who revisits the theme of metamorphosis.
But how old is Blaise? It’s all the magic of this singular album to leave the doubt hanging from end to end. Blaise has six or seven hairs that burst into the bush of his pajama collar, and even folded in three, out of bed, his body measured by the meter one meter eighty. So, Blaise is a gentleman. But the teddy bear who collects his confidences on the pillow as well as the rubber boots he wears during the day are not of this opinion, and whisper that Blaise still has milk behind his ears.
So Blaise is a little boy. If only his identity doubts were based on his date of birth … Blaise has a much more serious problem, which prevents him from uttering anything other than exasperated mockery: his metamorphosis into a brown bear is becoming more precise every day. On the face, between Jean Reno and Cary Grant, all remains smooth, despite the nervousness that arouses this disturbing mutation. But look a little lower: at first, Blaise has like mummy slippers grafted on her soles of feet, then the animal hair escapes from his boots like mink lapel, then comes the fur pants, and so on to the top of the skull.
An heir to Kafka’s “Metamorphosis” and Cronenberg’s “The Fly”.
This is the originality of Julien Martinière’s drawings: he tames his character by the feet, where his sudden hair begins, and this anchoring in the ground allows him to play on the theme of instability. How to find one’s balance when one is in permanent evolution, when everything believes and decreases in oneself? How to grow, to flourish, when we must constantly leave behind the one we were yesterday? By accepting what is happening, this album is as bizarre as it is formidable, a zany revisiting of Kafka’s Metamorphosis , and Cronenberg’s The Fly .
Peaceful, pensive, the last image shows an accomplished Ursid Blaise, conversing with a fellow in the forest, while his human life is a distant memory. Power back to the wild, and connection with its true nature. Marvel of time passing, conducive to self-fulfillment.