(1940- ) US Comic-strip artist renowned particularly for his painted fantasy strips featuring bulge-muscled men and enormous-breasted women. He worked in animation with Calvin Productions 1963-1972. In 1968 he published his first comic strip in the fanzine Voice of Comicdom, and he went on to publish a number of b/w fantasy strips in the underground titles Slow Death, Skull, Anomaly, Grimwit, Death Rattle and Fantagor, signing his work "Rich Corben" or "Gore". His most important creation during this period was Rowlf (1971), a story about a dog who is turned into a half-canine, half-human creature by a bungling Wizard. In 1970 he began drawing for the Warren Publishing magazines Eerie, Creepy and Vampirella.
RC's Graphic Novels, many of which first appeared in Heavy Metal, have been published in many languages in collected and serialized form. They include Bloodstar (graph 1976), New Tales of the Arabian Nights (graph 1979), Jeremy Brood (graph 1982) and an adaptation of Harlan Ellison's post-Holocaust tale Vic and Blood (graph 1989). His most lasting creation is Den, which he began in 1973 with the Animated Movie Neverwhere (1973) and subsequently drew as the full-colour comic strip Den (Heavy Metal 1977-1978; vt Den: Neverwhere graph 1978), plus Den: Muvovum, Den: Children of Fire, Den: Dreams and Den: Elements. Other works include Rip in Time (1986 4 vols), Richard Corben's Art Book, The Bodyssey, Children of Fire (#1-#3 1988), his graphic novel Mutant World (1979-1980; graph 1981) and, more recently, its sequel, Son of Mutant World (#1-#5 1990-1991). [RT/SH]
further reading: Richard Corben: Flights into Fantasy (1982) by Fershid Barucha; How to Draw Art for Comic Books by James Van Hise (1989); series of three interviews in Heavy Metal (1981).
Richard Vance Corben