The Eklips of Ungerer
By: Steven Heller | August 17, 2010
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.