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Yesterday I was honored to do the inaugurational speech of O-Sekoer’s personal exhibition in his home town Torhout.
To be honest I was impressed: by the works (of course), by their presentation (perfect as expected) but what impressed me the most was the crowd: family (90-years old mum and 1 month old granddaughter), friends, cartoon lovers and even 2 Syrian Refugees…. Hundreds of people all very proud on ‘their O-Sekoer’, THE great artist/cartoonist, but also a very humble local (or global?) man with a great heart.
As Mrs. Lieselotte Denolf (elderman in Torhout) said in her welcome word: ‘we all say we sympathise with the refugees escaping from war, but who invites them to come and drink a coffee at home, I don’t, but Luc he does.’
It illustrates that the work of O-Sekoer is the result of social engagement. As no other he invites the public to think, to create your own personal opinion about themes as war, poverty, climate change, terrorism, ….. Themes that are important to him and at the same time he is able to stay very objectif, he only gives us the facts, he doesn’t take position… But we do by our own reaction on the cartoon.
For this exhibition O-Sekoer reframed each of his cartoons, he used old frames, old paper, fabrics … Each work has it’s own personality: an old stamp, the prize of the book marked on the first page, the fingerprint of the artist. He’s playing with the time, he forces us to take a step back and have a secund look.
This is really a must see exhibition because I completely agree by these words of Jan Oplinus:
‘I’ve seen many cartoon exhibitions before, but this time the artist did not only surprise us with his outstanding cartoons, but also with the unique framing of the works. By doing so, the cartoons, already being of a high artistic quality, were exalted into another level.’
And the catalogue … Well the first two copies were for the two Syrian refugees…
These pics are made by: Geert Vanoverschelde
More information: http://o-sekoer.blogspot.be
The cartoon festival of Lebbeke is a small Belgian festival organized by a small group of volunteers with a warm heart. It is allways great to see how some people achieve to organize cartoon contests by hard working and further not a lot of financials. They deserve respect, because they do it for the pleasure of the art form that is cartooning.
The winner of this years edition was O-Sekoer, with his cartoon about refugees.
ZYGMUNT ZARADKIEWICZ (2nd), FRANK HOFFMANN (3th) and MIROSLAV BARVIRCAK (4th), the ‘CURIEUS’ prize was for the Belgian HAIDARI NATALIJA
Doede Okkema, Vladimir Kazanevsky and Jean Van Spittael got an honorable mention.
And I was happy to see some Belgian cartoonists again
On Saturday the 26th of September we had the opening ceremony of the Polish cartoonist and Illustrator Jerzy Gluszek and a selection of Croatian cartoonist and this in the presence of the Croatian Ambassador in Belgium
Just have a look at some nice pics of that evening
Last week a delegation of 7 members of the ECC went for a trip to the fantastic city of Berlin. The purpose of the trip was to be present at the awards ceremony of 6th International Cartoon Competition of Berlin 2015 with as theme “SPYING”. This ceremony took place on Friday the 5th June, but the ECC already arrived on Wednesday in order to combine the ceremony with a pleasant city trip. And we were very Lucky ; plenty of sunshine, nice and vivid neighbourhood of the hotel at Rosenthaler Platz with cosy bars, cafés and restaurants. For the cultural fans, Berlin is heaven ; there are lots of museums of which many are free and very modern like the Topographie of terrors and the Memorial of the murdered Jews of Europe. We recommend a free guided city walk in order to explore all the features of the city. However we do not recommend the Mauermuseum next to Checkpoint Charlie ; it’s old fashioned and a real tourist trap.
Friday evening we took the underground to arrive at Kurfürsterdamm 207.
It’s a shopping mall in which there’s also the museum ‘The Story of Berlin’. The Manager of this museum, Mr. Bernhard SCHÜTTE, was so kind to offer the foyer of his museum as the location for the awards ceremony. We were a bit ashamed that we didn’t visit this museum, but on the other hand this is a very good excuse to come back again to Berlin.
Before it started we were welcomed by Valeriu KURTU, who organised this event together with his enthusiastic team consisting of Paul GROSS, (Communications), Rais KHALILOV (Media Design) and Michael RUFMANN (Programming) and let’s not forget to mention his lovely wife Julia who provided us with tasteful snacks and drinks.
Michael FISCHER, know from Jazzradio Berlin, announced the prize winners. The second prize winner : Dieter HACKEBELL from Germany received the Silver He-Goat award. And later on the evening also the third prize winner arrived. We appreciated much the live-music that evening ; a mix of Hungarian folk songs brought by 2 extravagant ladies. The cartoons of all the prize winners as well as a selection of the best cartoons were exposed in a temporary exhibition in the foyer of the museum and the shopping mall itself. Among them also some Belgians as Luc Vernimmen, Norbert Van Yperzeele, Cost., Tony Tasco, … .
Further on that night we were invited for a party in the KURTUKUNST Gallery. Valeriu KURTU together with his wife Julia and his team spoiled us again with good food and enough drinks. We exchanged some cartoon books and experiences in the organisation of cartoon contests. We came to the conclusion that it is always difficult to find the necessary funds in order to make it happen. That’s why we hope that there will be a 7th edition of the Berlin cartoon contest and we call up on everybody who would like to sponsor the next edition. In that case the ECC wird zurück kommen !
More information: http://www.cartoonberlin.de
Constantin Sunnerberg (Cost.) was born in 1970 in Moscow (Russia). He grew up in an artistic environment and started to draw very young. He illustrated his first book at the age of ten. His mother was a convinced anticommunist and decided to leave the country and she married a French journalist. The family moved to Belgium when Constantin was 10. He spent his school years in The European School in Brussels and in 1995 he graduated at the ‘École nationale supérieure des arts visuels de La Cambre’ in the Graphic section. Constantin is now living and working in Brussels.
In 1998 he started creating political drawings for the Belgian newspaper Le Soir. Since then he is working as a professional illustrator, mainly for the press (Le Soir, Courrier International, Journal du Mardi, Espace de Libertés, Le Monde, World Parliamentarian, etc).
He is creating drawings, posters, books, etc. Constantin Illustrated several books. He painted a cow for the event Art on cows Brussels. He did some 40 trips in France for Courrier International, doing illustrated reports. He created drawings for the Rwanda trial in Brussels, giant figures for the famous Carnival of Nice, and drawings for the German TV ZDF. He won prizes in political cartoons, in poster or short stories competitions as well as in Belgian chess tournaments.
He started to participate in cartoon contests only in 2010 and immediately won the third prize in Knokke-Heist. Since that time his cartoons have been awarded a number of prestigious prizes at national and international cartoon competitions. And in the Euro-Kartoenale Kruishoutem he won the prize of best Belgian entry in 2011 on the theme ‘Shoes’ and the best European entry in 2013 ‘The Bicycle’.
Enough reasons to choose him as house cartoonist 2015 with a personal exhibition in the ECC.