Yesterday I had the opportunity to attend a great cartoon event
Political journalist Ivan De Vadder, cartoonist Karl Meersman and singer/songwriter Jan De Smet gave us an overview of the Belgian (political) year 2014, build around the cartoons of Karl Meersman.
For me Karl Meersman is one of the greatest Belgian cartoonists. He does not like the word cartoonist and prefer we call him illustrator. De Vadder called him ‘the man that creates political satire through cartoons’ and that’s exactly what it is.
‘The task of a cartoonist is not easy’, says De Vadder. ‘The drawings have to tell a story, have to work to a highlight. And after one simple look at the work the ‘reader’ has to catch the bottom line of the story. It even has to create a ‘aha-erlebnis’.
Meersman can be considered as a real master in political satire. Is father and grandfather were also painters and so he started his career from his childhood.
As an illustrator he draw the catalogue of the ‘Shoepost’ and labels for jam.
Later he draws caricatures in the Ikea-shops, know a lot of Belgians know him from his work in the magazines Trends and Focus Knack.
De Vadder: ‘every cartoonist uses it’s own idiom. It shows how the artist sees the world. For Karl you can see the influence of Shakespeare with themes as ‘Good and Bad’, ‘Power and Ambition’, ‘destiny’, …
The idea in the work of Meersman comes often as an object out of the head of the caricature.
And a third typical aspect of Meersmans work, says De Vadder, is the influence of the Belgian surrealist painter Rene Magritte.
What an impressive introduction on the universe of Karl Meersman.
An then the overview of 2014 can start. Cartoon by cartoon De Vadder comments the work of Meersman and his own view on the Belgian and international political situation in 2014. It brought a lot of information as De Vadder is one of the most influential and popular political journalists of our country.
The songs by Jan De Smet were great, we even had the occasion to hear the Hawaii version of our national Hymne.
We had a great evening and still are enjoying the book by Karl and De Vadder ‘de parabel van het Ezelsoor’ . The leading theme of the evening, but sorry guys it’s impossible to translate or explain it in this blog post.
Like to see more of Meersman’s work: