Spring Break a la Tintin: Chateau de Cheverny is an adventure in comic book history

My girl Jerusha is adventuring in France for spring break, hanging out with her cousin, Jenny, who works as an au pair for a family in Paris. They spent Saturday at the Chateau de Cheverny, which you'll recognize (if you're as big a nerd as I am) from the Tintin comic books.

Belgian author/artist Georges Prosper Remi, writing as "Hergé", used the iconic French estate as a template for Marlinspike Hall, which first appeared in The Secret of the Unicorn and Red Rackham’s Treasure. The Tintin books were known and loved for their meticulous research and sly political satire. There's been controversy over the years about the anything-but-PC undertones in the series, but that's part of what I loved about Tintin books, which I discovered in my geeky early teens. Hergé is one of those rare and wonderful children's artists like Maurice Sendak who whispers in the ear of a kid and is heard by an adult twenty years later.

Marlinspike Hall was home base for Tintin and his friends and a perfect backdrop for their shenanigans. With a recent resurgence in the popularity of the Tintin series, the Cheverny estate and the Hergé Foundation came together to create a permanent exhibition, The Secrets of Marlinspike Hall, at the Chateau. It's a brilliant idea that brings together art, architecture, and history -- and hip globe-trotting twenty-somethings.


Janet Little said…
Wow, a museum for an illustrated book, in a chateau! How cool is that? (Also your Jerusha, for going there!)

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