Ciro Tota: LUG Covers Version Originale

LUG Covers cover

This book is a catalogue of the “LUG Covers” exhibition, presented at Galerie 41 in Lyon, from May 27 to June 1, 2022. Contains a selection of LUG covers made by Ciro Tota reproducing the original plates: they are printed at scale of the original size or in the original production format. Preface by Phil Cordier on the backstory of the LUG covers. Cover illustrations reproducing the originals: Strange, Special Strange, Titans, Nova, Strange Special Origins and digests. A signed and numbered print of an unused image for STRANGE 250. Enlargements of panels to appreciate the power of the author’s line.

The book is protected in personalized cardboard packaging. Cardboard cover selective gloss varnish on certain parts of the book + anti-scratch varnish on the cover. Printed on a beautiful superior 150g offset paper.

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As with all AE format material (Artist’s Editions, Artifact Editions, Gallery Editions, Art Editions, Studio Editions, etc), this is a collection of classic comic material and I’ll be reviewing the book and not the story. For a complete list of all current and announced editions, with review links, please visit our Index. Also, see What is an Artist’s Edition and our Artist Index.

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Published as a catalogue of the exhibit “LUG Covers” which covered Ciro Tota’s extensive work for Editions LUG. This was a limited printing of 300 copies and included a signed and numbered print. Editions LUG printed translated North American comics, and Tota’s work here is an amazing look at one artist’s interpretation of Marvel characters from 1986-1993. Plus a selection of pencil preliminaries, colour guides, and digest covers from other genres. There’s an introduction as well, and an index of covers to close this volume out.

Scan quality is excellent, with no issues. Margin notes are limited to issue and date. Blacks show gradients. Correction fluid is used sparingly. The preliminaries show very well for being on tracing paper, as do the colour guides.

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The design pops with the bright red and then orange chapter dividers. Page numbers appear along the top whenever there is room, and they carry the red from the cover. The art enlargements on the colophon and table of contents are well done. The book opens with a series of enlargements that didn’t present as well. The book lays flat after smoothing the center, except where the signatures are glued.

Production is excellent: a sewn binding of 150gsm paper with a semi-gloss finish. The book comes in a cardboard case bearing a colour sticker showing a partial cover image and ISBN. The book is not shrink-wrapped as it includes a signed and numbered print. As well because I purchased the book before the exhibition I was able to get a small interior sketch from Tota.

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The publisher lists this book as LUG Covers, but the spine and title page have Ciro Tota LUG Covers, and version originale is also featured. For the title, I went with what was on the spine.