Among many tasks that have been going on for years Mariano Moreno National Library, there is one of vital importance. Not only in order to preserve the literary heritage, but also so that some of the works that have been hidden in the folds of time will be available again to readers old and new.
This concerns the reissue of a series of works which, for various reasons, have become unsearchable and which, according to various collections, the institution makes available again to all. In this case it is Protosky Treaty. Medicine according to oskI and césaR brutOa work created by these famous masters of illustrated humor in the second half of the fifties of the last century, but due to certain characteristics of its origin, its circulation was very restricted.
The volume includes two thematically related works, commissioned by two pharmacological laboratories. The first is Medisinal Brutoski illustrateda series of medical-themed pamphlets commissioned by DuPont Laboratories in 1955 for the great cartoonist couple Oski (Oscar Conti) and writer Carlos Warnes, in the shoes of his alter ego césaR brutO.
Photo: National Library Courtesy of
These magazines, of which only five issues were published, were distributed to physicians free of charge in order to promote the company’s products. Three years later and following the same logic, the duo received a similar proposal from the Chilean laboratories Recalcine, which led to the emergence of Vade Mecum Brutoski Medisinae, a medical dictionary written by Caesar Proto and illustrated by Oski. Work which also remained incomplete, being published only up to the letter N.
he Medisinal Brutoski illustrated It repeats the format of the thematic journal, from which its various sections deal with various issues related to medicine. Each issue includes accounts of Caesar Brut’s personal experience as a physician received by correspondence, biographies of apocryphal notables, a page of absurd news and social media, catchphrases that never get to ten, and a hilarious glossary of medical terms, which will be taken to an extreme. Vade Mecum Brutoski Medisinae.
césaR brutO’s texts mimic the popular discourse of the time, in a similar way to that used by the great Niní Marshall in some of her classic characters, such as Catita or Mingo. For their part, Oski’s illustrations provide a perfect graphic complement, based on baroque scenes that multiply actions on different levels.
Thus can be known the story of Lucas van Esquelet, discoverer of the skeleton, who realized that “a man without bones is a walking worm”. Or that “doptoR introduced itself as a handler and that was wrong”. Or definitions that play with a double meaning laden with innocence only makes it funnier. Such as those that correspond to the words Finger (“The finger is used for many things which need not be explained because everyone knows it, and he who does not know it can manage it as best he can”) or Anal (“In geography, this word denotes an area of the R equator, But in anatomy it denotes something else which we cannot explain now because there are women.”
Restored by a team led by Judith Josiol, Curator of the Argentine Comics Center and Graphic Humor Center, the original works are united today under the title Protosky Treaty They have been missing for a long time. Actually, it is Vade Mecum Brutoski Medisinae It has not been re-released yet. As usually happens in Argentina in other areas of culture, its recovery was possible thanks to the efforts of individuals who kept their complete collections. The publication of the material, for its part, is the result of the joint work of National Libraries of Chile and Argentina, and in our country this is part of the Papel de Kiosco group. An invaluable and unforgettable work.
Where and how to get it
Brutoski’s dissertation Presented on Wednesday, July 12th at 6:30 pm at the Comic Strip and Graphic Humor Center of the Argentine National Library (BN), Agüero 2502, with the participation of comedian Jorge Meijide (Meiji), visual artist Daniel Santoro, designer Laura Varsky and graduate letters Paula Labor.
Like everything BN publishes, the digital version of Brutoski’s dissertation It can be downloaded from the institution’s website (www.bn.gov.ar/micrositios/libros), and hard copies can be purchased from the BN publishing house, Las Heras 2508, or from different parts of the country through the distributor La Periférica (la-periferica.com.ar).