Skip to main content

Asaf and Tomer Hanuka

A Tribe of Two

by Cosimo Lorenzo Pancini and Guido Martini

Any screenwriter of even mediocre talent knows that a superhero is nothing without the proper 'origin story'. It takes the random bite of an unlikely radioactive spider to give birth to Spider-Man, the death of parents to create Batman, that of an entire planet for Superman. And often, great powers are accompanied not only by great responsibilities, but also by invincible frailties: Daredevil's blindness, Tony Stark's diseased heart, Clark Kent's loser appearance. The twin brothers grow up, in their own words, as a 'tribe of two', and discover their superpower through a chance encounter with a handful of comic book greats. They don't need radioactive spiders: Marvel boards, Katsuhiro Otomo's manga visions and Jean 'Moebius' Giraud's ineffable clear line are enough to push them on the path of comics and illustration. They do so with personal stories and different timescales, one (Asaf) working in his homeland and publishing for the European market; the other (Tomer) seeking his fortune in the United States, and finally finding it thanks to the covers he did for the New Yorker, the ideal goal for every illustrator. During the years in which they each follow their own different paths, they do not lose touch - after all, they are twins - continuously, collaborating on comics (The Divine on texts by Boaz Lavie), concept art for animation (Waltz with Bashir by Ari Folman) and personal art projects (The Moodies). Their superpower is drawing, and the style of both is the result of the thousand contaminations of the present, based on the apparent simplicity of the clear Franco-Belgian line combined with a digital sensibility that mixes videogame art, anime and references to the avant-garde of the 20th century. Both are prolix and versatile, capable of moving seamlessly from the fantastic worlds of popular entertainment to the tense representation of reality. (...) Hovering between figurative representation and abstract colours, between the simplicity of reality and the complexity of thought, Asaf and Tomer's work best represents the richness of the world achieved by illustration and comics. These are arts that only a handful of years ago were considered "minor", and which instead, thanks to their ability to communicate and involve the community, have found an extraordinary way of becoming tools for reading the world in which we live, for orienting our lives and guiding us, each in our own first-person video game, to a destination that only exists if we think about it together.

The authors will be guests of Lucca Comics & Games 2023.

Venue: Palazzo Ducale - Lucca