30th November 1935, Rome, Italy - 10th February 2017, London, England
Gino D’Achille was born in Rome in 1935 and displayed a precocious talent as an artist from a very young age – being invited at 11 years old to present a portrait he’d made of Pope Pius XII to the pontiff himself. From 13 he studied at Rome’s Liceo Artistico, going on to the University of Architecture at 19. By now, he was already drawn to the world of commercial art, producing advertising illustrations for the prestigious agency Studio Favalli in his spare time. This led him to pursue a full-time career in Milan, where he gained the attention of British scouts, and in 1964 Gino was persuaded to move to London. Here, he immediately established his credentials with his illustrations for David Kossof’s popular Bible Stories, commissioned by WM Collins.
His international reputation gained hold with his 1973 paintings for the John Carter of Mars series by Edgar Rice Burroughs, going on to create over 100 cover paintings for other science-fiction titles published by Daw Books, Ace, Ballantine and various other publishers.
He illustrated Sherlock Holmes stories, The Jungle Book, Fu Manchu stories, Arthurian legends and the Jack Vance Science Fantasy series as well as stories by Daphne du Maurier and Mary Stewart.
He is also well known for his series of covers for the much-loved Flashman series of novels by George Macdonald Fraser, as well as countless western adventure stories, crime thriller and war stories, romance novels and children’s books.
Gino lived in London and Corsica with his wife, painter Mim Hain.
His daughter, Simona, manages his archive and Studio D'Achille Editions which produces limited edition prints of Gino's artwork. She continues to promote his work, inspiring illustration students worldwide and is in the process of setting up a foundation in his name to maintain his legacy.
Photo © Max Bailey