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ARTONAUTS 5 – Art and science (WizArt)

album: Artonauts 5 – Art and science (WizArt)

stickers: 280 (1-280) + 25 Twin Cards

starter pack: album + 3 packets 3,90€

box: 20 packets (5 stickers + 1 card per packet) 0,80€ each

A periodic appointment that we always await with trepidation and curiosity. Trepidation because for a few years, without a shadow of a doubt, the album Artonauts has been a pleasant presence on newsstands. Curiosity because, while maintaining a similar format, each new album is full of novelties, new ideas and of course also new adventures for our heroes.

Another aspect that confirms the perfect mix: product quality and cost of sachets below average. The Artonauti brand is a creation of WizArt itself, this particular situation involves much more complex work in the creation of the product. You do not access an archive provided by third parties which “only” needs to be set up graphically, but you start from scratch, taking advantage of and experiencing what has been created up to that point. One has the pleasant sensation that behind the general project there is the idea of creating a product numerically (in stickers and cards) and economically within the reach of many, if not all. We hold onto Artonauts, Cucciolotti, etc., to others we willingly leave ultra limited stickers, parallels and other ways resulting from the fashion of the moment.

We like to think that the Artonauts staff, having finished one album, is already working on the next one and that indeed, in some way, as if it were a film saga, the themes addressed are not decisions of the moment but follow a sequential logic. Even the comic protagonists, the dog Argo, Morgana and Ale, after all, seem to become older, album after album. With the times of stickers, a bit like Marvel where, at least historically, every 5 years of the comic was worth 1 year of real life. After over 60 years of editorial life, inevitably, this timeline has not continued.

The fifth chapter of Artonauts is a bit like a return to the first sensational album, which had an incredible success, certainly confirmed later, otherwise we won’t be here to talk about it. Return because the journey retraces eras and historical moments that are very distant from each other, with in part the great novelty of arriving not only at the present day but in some way… “peeping” into the future too.

A journey that takes inspiration from the dream that many of us share, both collectors and book lovers, as well as those of history and science. Entering a library, one of those of the past with millions of books up to the ceiling, discovering inventions, events, myths, stories handed down over the centuries and phrases, idioms, which have become in common use. The concept is simple, if the world is like this today, with all its merits and also its defects, it is also dictated by the fact that one day, in a very distant time, something was created, thought of, achieved. There is a thread that binds us to the ancient Egyptians, Etruscans, Romans, etc. Are you not convinced? Well, browsing the album could help you in this regard.

Naturally the Artonauts leave nothing to chance and the album follows a logical path, which starts from prehistory and page by page reaches the deepest space. The research work of the WizArt team is commendable. Semi quoting Superman (is it a plane? is it a bird? It’s Superman!) it’s difficult to give a precise definition to this product, part comic, part illustration, game, teaching, a minestrone (in the positive sense of the term) of culture in stickers!

Those who follow us are well aware of our passion for shaped stickers, here is an explosion of images that take substance thanks to the completion of the pages. They are often paintings, monuments that are easy to recognize but we believe WizArt’s intent is also to give life to curiosity, to the search for details. By attaching a certain sticker you can recognize a characteristic that perhaps we had previously missed.

The division into chapters was successful, a splash page that introduces the children to the historical moment that they will experience and follow more didactic pages that tell the evolution of science and art. Not getting lost in the written contents of the pages is a mistake, not only to promote one’s own cultural growth (and that of our young people even more importantly), but also to not miss the opportunity to play with art and science. From time to time, the Artonauts invite you to observe better, to read, to “win” the small quizzes half hidden in the story.

However, this album is original compared to the previous ones, as, as the title itself says, it is not only dedicated to art but also to science and technological discoveries. Brunelleschi and the skyscrapers in the same album?? With the Artonauts everything is possible!

It’s not an album for everyone, perhaps. It is certainly an album that should be enjoyed, browsed through, reading the important captions and following the long adventure; we too are part of it, as part of humanity. We are convinced that even today, in the technological and ultra-fast era, there is still room for educational albums, just as it might have been for our grandparents when they were attaching stickers in the 1950s. Certainly, extra and more detailed work needs to be done than in the past, once upon a time the album was the only way to learn about a reality, a story or a historical moment, in addition to the always fundamental books. Now we have a thousand ways and occasions, but the immortal charm of our little paper friends always makes everything special.

Simply wonderful album, in our opinion more successful than the previous one which dealt, however excellently, with different topics between myth and art. However, next to each other, in our personal collection of Artonauts albums, they look really good. Any advice for the future? An album that also addresses environmental issues, from a different perspective, for example how man has related to nature through art.


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