Dick Matena studied at the Academy of Fine Arts, but stayed there for only one year. He became an appretice at the Marten Toonder Studios in 1960. Soon, he was assigned to work on the comics production. He cooperated on the advertising project 'Het Geheim van de Gulden Gaper', and he became the penciller of the 'Panda' strip in 1961. In spite of several fights he had with the management (he quit the studio two times but came back both times), he drew 'Panda' for five years. During the same period, he cooperated on 'Tom Poes', and created his own series, 'Polletje Pluim'. He additionally illustrated 'Big Bad Wolf' stories for the Donald Duck weekly.
Matena joined the magazine Pep in 1968, where he began such famous series as 'De Argonautjes' (1968-1973), 'Ridder Roodhaar' (1969-1971) (both scripted by Lo Hartog van Banda) and 'Grote Pyr' (1971-1974). He continued his career at Pep's successor, Eppo. He did the strip 'Kleine Pier', and became a scriptwriter for other artists. He wrote scenarios for series like 'De Partners' (art Carry Brugman), 'Storm' (art Don Lawrence) and 'De Macaroni's' (art Dino Attanasio). He did the artwork of the 'Storm' mini-series 'Kronieken van de Tussentijd' himself, using the pseudonym John Kelly. These stories were written by Martin Lodewijk, who had also succeeded Matena as the writer of the regular series.Between 1976 to 1991, he was present in the Dutch Donald Duck weekly again with comic adaptations of the Dutch children's classics 'Dik Trom', 'Kruimeltje' and 'Pietje Bell', as well as short stories with Disney side-characters, mainly 'The Big Bad Wolf', but also 'Bucky Bug', 'Hiawatha' and 'Gus and Jaq'. However, Matena's biggest fame came from his science- fiction comics. He changed his style and started out with the series 'Virl' in Mickey Maandblad in 1977, followed by stories for such magazines as Gummi and the American Heavy Metal.
Matena did various comics for Eppo, Sjosji and Wordt Vervolgd, such as 'Dandy' and 'Alias Ego', as well as the more adult one-shots 'Amen' (Yendor, 1980), 'Mythen' (Panda, 1984), 'Lazarus Stone' (SP, 1984), 'De Prediker' (Arboris, 1984) and 'Het Web' (Arboris, 1985). He revived the 'Tom Poes' balloon comic in 1997. Two new episodes appeared in Donald Duck in that year. In 2000, he began working on comic adaptations of famouse novels from Dutch literature, starting with Robert van Gulik's 'Rechter Tie'. In 2001 he started working on a comics version of the classic novel 'De Avonden' by Gerard Reve, which gave him wide media attention. It was published in Het Parool and later as a series of books by De Bezige Bij. In 2006, he released the comics version of 'Kort Amerikaans', a novel by Jan Wolkers. (source: http://lambiek.net/artists/m/matena.h...