The Daily Heller: Death Imitates Life (and Art)

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In 1918, the Austrian painter Egon Schiele, known for the stiffly twisted, rigor mortis–like poses of his human subjects, died from the Spanish Flu during the pandemic. He was 28 years old.

Immediately prior to his death, in mid-October, Schiele’s wife, Edith, fell terribly ill. She was six months pregnant at the time, and despite desperate care from her husband, she succumbed to the flu on Oct. 28. Three days later, Schiele followed his wife and unborn child.

Based exclusively on the internet photos below of Schiele before and after his demise (lying eerily natural on his deathbed), this comic by Mirko Ilic is the most recent installment in his series of COVID-19 sequential works (more here and here).

In a pandemic, you find inspiration where you can.

"Here you can see that I did exactly the same drawing as the photos," Ilic says, "except sometimes I darkened the background and rotated them a little bit."