A MEMORIAL DAY Special: Artist Andrea Mutti was the right choice for Brian Wood’s Rebels. Dude collects muskets! With EXCLUSIVE PREVIEW ART!
Seriously. Italian artist Andrea Mutti probably knows more about American wars than you do.
Yesterday, we talked to writer Brian Wood about the direction of his historical-fiction series. Today, on Memorial Day proper, we cross the Atlantic (metaphorically speaking) and talk with the artist/Revolution buff. (And tomorrow, we have a surprise for you!) Rebels #3 is due out 6/10 from Dark Horse.
Dan Greenfield: How did an Italian guy wind up so interested in the American Revolutionary War?
Andrea Mutti: So, like most Italians, I love history, and my passion for the U.S. War of Independence is really intense (some friends have told me). It’s the same for the U.S. Civil War and Indian Wars: a BIG new nation at the beginning of its life, a dirty and violent period, full of clashes and contradictions, full of great men and women who fight for freedom, but who at the same time destroy another world (the natives). It’s a messy, epic period that not only defines a country, but changes the world. I LOVE IT!
Exactly what memorabilia, weapons, etc. do you own?
Ah-ha! I have a musket, four different tricorns, and a couple of gilets (under jackets). All these things are a real inspiration. It’s fun, of course, but also VERY useful to reference details and proportions. I asked my aunt, a GREAT seamstress, to make a green jacket exactly like the one Seth wears in the book. I am so curious to see how it turns out—can’t wait!
Have you ever seen a re-enactment here in the States?
Agh! NOT YET! Even though I’ve travelled a lot in the U.S., I have never seen an event like this. But, I visited Little Bighorn—the place of Custer’s Last Stand—in Montana last June. It was amazing and emotional for me! Yeah, it’s not the same time period, but you get what I mean. Several times in Italy or elsewhere in Europe, I saw a re-enactment close to what you’ve asked about. I hope one day to see some of that in the U.S. It should be great!
How does your interest in the Revolution inform your art in Rebels? Did you already have a lot of knowledge or did you need to do more research?
Even though I have passion and I know several things about it, the research is ALWAYS important. I never stop learning. It is VERY important for me to be IN the story, and learning is a major part of that. It’s a journey WITHIN the journey, an amazing experience, and if you can share all that with a great crew like we have on Rebels—wow, what else do you need?!