Throughout his storied career, Milo Manara has channeled passion through evocative linework and intoxicating color palettes. His library—ranging from Gullivera to The Golden Ass and Pandora's Eyes—tackles humanity at its most intimate and sexual. On his Facebook and Instagram accounts, the artist is pivoting to reflect on a different facet of human empathy: the everyday heroes keeping the devastating coronavirus pandemic from spreading.
Manara's home country of Italy has endured severe losses in the wake of the disease. As of today, the country has witnessed 18,279 deaths due to coronavirus—the most of any country fighting the contagion—out of a confirmed 143,626 cases. Manara's current home of Veneto has weathered 607 of those fatalities. (For reference, the United States has a confirmed 469,121 cases with 16,676 deceased).
In the face of such profound tragedy, Manara's pencil and watercolor portraits of grocery workers, carriers, truckers, sanitation workers, and medical professionals shines a beautiful—and necessary—light on the brave souls working day and night to keep those brutal statistics from spiraling higher. Manara began the series on March 15th, featuring a doctor confronting an enlarged model of the virus. He's since expanded the theme into the other careers mentioned above.