The Eklips of Ungerer

Tomi Ungerer, one of the most important illustrators of our time,
has produced more than 40,000 drawings, poster drafts,
collages, lithographs, woodcuts, and objects during his lifetime. He has also illustrated 140 books for
children and adults, ranging from fairy tales to social satires and
dealing with diverse topics such as childhood memories,
eroticism, and death. He now has a website.
And if you want to see what this master of acerbic art is doing now, go
there right now. (And don’t be surprised by what you see.)

If you want more – and I’m sure you will – he has a major exhibition
hanging at the moment and a 352 page catalog to accompany it. The
Kunsthalle Würth is covering his oeuvre from 1960 – 2010: about 600
works. Among them are subtle caricatures from all of the artist’s
creative periods, and I for one am loving illustrations such as the ones drawn for the
“Big song book” containing folk and children’s songs from the time
between the 14th and the 20th century, social “Symptomatics” and the
artist’s legendary Erotoscope.

“In all these works,” notes the museum’s website,
“we meet legendary characters again. Numerous drawings and
illustrations, which have not been published before, as well as new
satirical-surreal collages, objects and assemblages of Dadaist
absurdity form the heart of the exhibition.”

The exhaustive yet accessible catalog, EKLIPS
includes contributions by Werner Spies, Andreas Platthaus, Therèse
Willer and Sylvia Weber, and is published by Swiridoff Publishers.


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About Steven Heller

Steven Heller is the co-chair of the SVA MFA Designer /Designer as Author + Entrepreneur program, writes frequently for Wired and Design Observer. He is also the author of over 170 books on design and visual culture. He received the 1999 AIGA Medal and is the 2011 recipient of the Smithsonian National Design Award.