Tabary was born in Stockholm and made his comics debut with Richard et Charlie published in the Franco-Belgian comics magazine Vaillant on 5 November 1956. For Vaillant (in 1965 renamed Pif) Tabary also drew Grabadu et Gabaliouchtou, and eventually the hit series Totoche in 1959, which produced another series with two if its characters, Corinne et Jeannot, and its own short-lived periodical Totoche Poche. Tabary continued to draw this series until 1976.
In 1962 Tabary began a long-lasting collaboration with René Goscinny, creating the series Les aventures du Calife Haroun el Poussah, first published in Record on 15 January 1962. Shifting its focus and title name to the evil protagonist/anti-hero of the series, Iznogoud became a considerable success, and was eventually adapted into a cartoon TV series.In 1968 the series changed serial publication magazine to Goscinny's Pilote magazine.