Welcome to Altaplana, the impossible and infinite encyclopedia of the world of The Obscure Cities, originally named Les Cités Obscures and its authors François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters.
François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters started to explore these cities in the early 1980s. In this fictional world, humans live in independent city-states, each of which has developed a distinct civilization, each characterized by a distinctive architectural style.
François Schuiten and Benoît Peeters didn't only explore this universe by graphic novels, but also by the means of books, movies, exhibitions, scenographics & radio documentaries.
The word Obscure is somewhat misleading for English-speaking readers. In English we tend to think of the word to mean “little known” or “odd.” The French use the word for multiple meanings, including “mysterious”, “hidden” or even “secluded.” ALL of these adjectives could apply to the world imagined in the minds of Benoît Peeters and François Schuiten.
On the Obscure Continent Altaplana is the city that is dedicated to hold all the archives of the Obscure Cities. Altaplana was founded in November 747 AT, after the Convention Von Amelunxen decided that all archives had to be centralized in one special place. Altaplana is located west of Urbicande and Alaxis, mid-way between the two in longitude.
The founding of Altaplana was not an immediately success. It took a long time to sort out if the documents have to be archived in alphabetical, chronological or logical order. Even after personal intervention of Governor Arkhalsky the chaos remained.
It was after a long time that Joseph Le Perdriel brought structure in the chaos by implementing a system that allowed documents to be archived in alphabetical, chronological and logical order, all at the same time. This system made it possible in 2011 to lift the embargo on information and open the Altaplana archives for everyone.
The archives at Altaplana contain about 2841 pages and are growing day by day. Enjoy the world of Les Cités Obscures!
Schuiten nominated for 2017 Eisner Awards
François Schuiten has been nominated for the 2017 Eisner Awards in San Diego! François is nominated as best penciller/inker for the album The Theory of the Grain of Sand . This album is published by IDW.
Integral editions of Les Cités Obscures
During the last years, many classic Belgium and French comic series were published in integral albums. Many people asked why Les Cités Obscures were not published in an integral version. In Japan the storie…
14 Insightful Images from Francois Schuiten’s Process Video
Francois Schuiten just won Inktober.
Again, Inktober is not a contest. There is no prize. It’s all just about the experience, learning, and getting better.
But then you see this insane…
16 Vintage Images of a Beloved Belgian Team
Schuiten and Peeters Working Together
This is a 12 minute video of a younger Francois Schuiten working alongside his writing collaborator, Benoit Peeters, on a page. It’s all in French, so it’s mostly …
François Schuiten et Benoît Peeters piratés amicalement
Voilà l'ensemble des piratages amicaux et des hommages que nous avons montrés à Benoît Peeters et à François Schuiten à l'occasion de leur venue à Pierrevives fin mars.
Nous avons eu très peu …
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