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Tanino Liberatore (1953 - )

Related: Italian comics - adult comics

Ranxerox in New York (1982) - Liberatore and Tamburini [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

Ranxerox is a punk, futuristic Frankenstein, and with the under-aged Lubna, they are a bizarre Beauty and the Beast. This artist and writer team have turned a dark mirror to the depths of our Id and we see reflected the base part of ourselves that would take what it wants with no compromise, no apology - and woe to the person who would cross us. But it is all done with a black, wry, satyrical sense of humor. --Richard Corben

Illustration by Tanino Liberatore

artwork by Tanino Liberatore
image sourced here.

Ranx 1 sample page
Image sourced here.

Ranx 1 (1982) - Tanino Liberatore [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]


Gaetano Liberatore, better known as Tanino Liberatore, was born in Quadri (Chieti), Italy on April 12, 1953. He is an Italian comics author and illustrator of international repute. His best known fictional character is RanXerox. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tanino_Liberatore [Aug 2005]

Official Site

http://www.taninoliberatore.com, Jan 2004


Born in April 1953 to Quadri (Chieti), Italy, Gaetano Liberatore, said Tanino, frequents the artistic school of Pescara (together to Andrea Pazienza) and from 1974 at 1978 he designs covers of disks and he collaborates with some agencies of publicity. He begins in 1978 as author of comic strips on the Cannibale magazine. Next he has collaborated to "Il Male" and he has been one of the founders of "Frigidaire", on whose pages have continued Ranxerox, a kind of monster of Frankenstein punk created by Stephen Tamburini. Popular in France, where he has lived for years and where he is well soon imposed on the pages of the "Echo des Savanes" like one of the most interesting authors of his generation, Liberatore has also realized numerous brief histories without fixed characters, often characterized by a notable erotic position over that from abundant doses of violence.

Profile (2)

Although the work of Tanino Liberatore could be called realistic (by very broad-minded people), this Italian comic artist has elements that go far beyond the traditional boundaries of the realistic genre. For example, he uses felt-tip markers and lipstick for coloring his work, giving it an uncanny appearance.
With the strange settings of his stories, the unusual coloring, and his use of Cyborg protagonists, Liberatore's work, including 'Rank Xerox', could also be called bizarre, an impression that is reinforced by his use of "ultra-violence". While there could be disagreement about whether his work is realistic or not, there can be no dispute about the fact that Liberatore is a unique, original artist and the master of his own style.

Stefano Tamburini 1955-1986

Stefano is known outside of Italy as the creator of Rank Xerox, beautifully illustrated by Tanino Liberatore. Stefano was a writer of scenarios, illustrator, graphical artist, editor, journalist and the man behind Italian magazines "Cannibale" e "Frigidaire". He died of an overdose in 1986 One more Ranx was published after Stefano's untimely death, but it lacked the nice storyline of the first two volumes. Read more about Stefano on the following pages (Italian) [...]

Richard Corben on RanXerox

Introduction by Richard Corben

«It is my great pleasure to introduce this work by Tanino Liberatore and Stefano Tamburini. They have given us a mechanical creature with more passionate violence than any human character I have ever seen in the comic medium.

Ranxerox is a punk, futuristic Frankenstein, and with the under-aged Lubna, they are a bizarre Beauty and the Beast. This artist and writer team have turned a dark mirror to the depths of our Id and we see reflected the base part of ourselves that would take what it wants with no compromise, no apology - and woe to the person who would cross us. But it is all done with a black, wry, satyrical sense of humor.

Since I feel a close kinship to Liberatore's art, I would like to scratch this surface first. Comic work is primarily a visual medium. It is the pictures, the page design, the graphic concert of the images, scenes, and characters that first attract the reader. Then the art must also be arranged in a conventional way to form a narrative. Some artists put more emphasis on the first task, attraction, while others work harder on the narrative and descriptive elements.

I believe I fall into this second category as do most of the comic artists I most admire. Our newest champion is Liberatore. Drawing apparently comes easily to this giant. His skill with anatomical forms is beautiful; yet he is not enslaved to this skill but uses it as a tool to further portray the characters. This guy can really draw flesh-and-blood people. He uses shaded, rounded forms -a rarity in comic art- and he does it with felt-tip markers! The ability to render soft edges with such a tool borders on the supernatural! Ranxerox and Lubna prowl a decayed urban setting with a seething mass of apathetic humanity. All this is rendered with rich textures in a chaotic but fitting color scheme.

Ranxerox is a bizarre anti-hero in a twisted, distorted world. There is quite a lot of violence here. Ranx clobbers junkies, thugs, punks, and whole motorcycle gangs. Generally these are nasty characters who get what they deserve. We vicariously cheer Ranx on. But there are a couple of instances that might cause the reader to stop and think, even get angry for a moment: After a psychotic with a gun opens fire in a crowded train, killing several innocent bystanders, none of the survivors is concerned about the victims. And earlier, Ranx is irritated by a little girl selling flowers and he crushes her hand. Is this mindless peripheral violence? This may be an absurdly exaggerated joke about Italian flower girls. Perhaps Tamburini is saying, with Liberatore's help, that innocence has no hope for survival in such a world and the general population consists of automaton-like people who are more like machines than Ranxerox.

Finally, despite the artistic complexity, Ranxerox is not to be taken too seriously. Like Punch who threw his baby out the window and constantly beat Judy, Ranx is outrageous, but funny entertainment.» --Richard Corben, June 1984


  1. http://www.geocities.com/louis_de_klerk/liberatore-cover.html
  2. http://www.lambiek.net/liberatore.htm

Art direction

Monica Bellucci in Astérix et Obelix: Mission Cleopatre (2002)
image sourced here. [Aug 2005]

Designers Phillip Guillotel and Tanino Liberatore were brought in to design nine dresses – one for each scene – and the standout is a pearl-encrusted bodice. --http://www.hellomagazine.com/fashion/2002/07/26/monicabellucci/ [Aug 2005]

Cannibale (magazine)

Cover of Cannibale, issue 3
image sourced here. [Aug 2005]

Nel maggio del 1977 Stefano Tamburini fonda la rivista a fumetti Cannibale raccogliendo intorno a se Massimo Mattioli, Filippo Scòzzari, Andrea Pazienza e Tanino Liberatore. Su Cannibale appaiono le prime storie del celebre fumetto Ranxerox, scritte da Tamburini e disegnate da Pazienza e Liberatore. --http://it.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stefano_Tamburini [Aug 2005]

see also: Tanino Liberatore - Italian comics - magazine - Italy

Stefano Tamburini

RanXerox in his first incarnation, by Stefano Tamburini
image sourced here. [Aug 2005]

Stefano Tamburini (Rome, August 18, 1955 - April 1986) was a graphic artist, author and publisher.

He founded the magazines Combinazioni (1974), Cannibale (1977) and Frigidaire (1980)

He is the spiritual father of RanXerox, which was drawn by his friend Tanino Liberatore. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stefano_Tamburini [Aug 2005]

see also: Tanino Liberatore - Italian comics - Italy

Ranxerox in New York (1982) - Liberatore and Tamburini

Ranxerox in New York (1982) - Liberatore and Tamburini [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

RanXerox, or Ranx, is a science fiction graphic novel series by Tanino Liberatore and Stefano Tamburini (1955 - 1986), two Italian artists who had worked previously on such magazines as "Cannibale" and "Frigidaire." Conceived as a bizarre anti-hero, Ranx was a mechanical creature made from photocopier parts.

"Ranxerox in New York" was published in 1982 in Heavy Metal magazine. Two more issues of Heavy Metal and novels followed. The name RanXerox was later changed to Ranx due to lawsuit by Xerox for the copyright of the word "Xerox."

Ranx's face was based mainly on that of a childhood friend of Liberatore. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/RanXerox [Aug 2005]

see also: Tanino Liberatore - Italian comics - Italy

The Man From Utopia (1983) - Frank Zappa

The Man From Utopia (1983) - Frank Zappa [Amazon.com] [FR] [DE] [UK]

The Man From Utopia is a 1983 rock 'n' roll album by Frank Zappa. Cocaine Decisions is probably the best-known track, with its Zappa groove redolent of skiffle washboards and its contribution to the great mis-rhymes of rock history: "...you are a doctor or a lawyer / you got an office with a foyer..." Also included, Dangerous Kitchen, a track which describes a place "where the cream is all clabbered and the salad is frightful..." and "the milk can hurt you".

In a similar vein is the satire on 1950s sci-fi B-movies, The Radio Is Broken. As usual, Zappa's caustic, sarcastic humor often hits its mark, but may distract from the fabulous guitar driven musical arrangements of which he was capable. As an album "The Man From Utopia" is more song-driven, and less conceptual than many others in Zappa's ouvre. The cover features the work of RanXerox artist Tanino Liberatore. --http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Man_From_Utopia [Aug 2005]

see also: USA - Frank Zappa - Tanino Liberatore - Italian comics - Italy


  1. Ranx 1: Ranx à New-york (1982) - Stefano Tamburini, Tanino Liberatore [Amazon FR]
    Although the adventures of Rank Xerox had previously been published in various magazines in Italy (Frigidaire, Cannibale), France ( l'Echo des Savanes), US (Heavy Metal), the first hard cover Rank Xerox story (as it was then called by the authors) appeared in 1982 on Ed. Albin Michel.

  2. Ranx 2 (198x) - Stefano Tamburini, Tanino Liberatore [Amazon FR]
    Second volume, equally good as the first one

  3. Ranx 3: Amen ! (198x) - Tanino Liberatore [Amazon FR]
    Stefano Tamburini had died, Tanino writes his own scenario. Let's just say that he draws a lot better than he writes.

  4. Liberatore's Women - Tanino Liberatore [Amazon US]
    Tanino Liberatore is well known in his field. That field would be independent comic, and erotic art. He drew and created Ranx, the anti-hero featured in Heavy Metal magazine. Since this is a book of art, whether you like it or not depends on what art you enjoy. Liberatore's art is lush in color, and his attention to detail is wonderful! He is an Italian artist, and one gets the feeling that he studied the masters, while looking at his work. However, his style is quite unique. His art is very erotic, which is fine, to a certain extent (for my taste). There are some pictures which I simply do not enjoy, while there are others which are wonderful. If you are conservative in your taste, perhaps this is not a book for you! If you enjoy modern science-fiction art that is done bizarre, erotic, and often most beautiful, you might very well love this book (it's not all sci-fi)! I would give this book 5 stars, if some of the images displayed were not so sexual. It's simply a matter of taste. -- Amazon reviewer

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