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Gianluigi Coppola

Gianluigi "Didi" Coppola (1928 - 2015) was an Italian illustrator, comic artist, and painter. He was born in Chiavari near Genoa in 1928 and, after attending art school, moved in 1949 to Milan to begin work on the magazine Goal for the Italian daily La Gazzetta dello Sport. He collaborated with Ferdinando Tacconi in the creation of 'Nat del Santa Cruz' and Franco Paludetti on 'Sciuscià', two of the most notable Italian comic strips of the post-war period.

In 1954 he married in England, where he worked for more than twenty years as a comic artist, illustrator and graphic designer. He drew British comic strips like 'Billy the Kid' for The Sun, the Sunday page of Harry Bishop's 'Gun Law' for the Sunday Express, as well as 'Scoop Donovan' and 'Battler Britton' for Fleetway libraries.

At the beginning of the 1970s his focus switched to book illustration for publishers like Penguin, Pan, Corgi and Granada, for whom he created covers for a wide range of titles - from classic novels, to thrillers and romances.  During this time he was much in demand with ad agencies like Young and Rubicam with whom he collaborated at The Sunday Times and also received regular commissions for other magazines like The Observer and Forum.

In 1979 he returned to Italy and began working for Mondadori.  With Lele Luzzati and Flavio Costantini he created illustrations for a children's encyclopedia, and cartoons for the adult magazines Playboy and Penthouse. In the 1990s the publishing house Bonelli hired him to draw several installments of the comic book series 'Dylan Dog' and 'Martin Mystère', while continuing to illustrate educational books published by Cideb. Coppola eventually devoted himself to painting portraits and seascapes. He passed away in Genoa in in August 2015.

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Gianluigi Coppola