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05 April 2012

Jules Feiffer and Political Cartoons Feted

I am so excited as I got to meet one of my heroes, Jules Feiffer, tonight, at the Awards Reception for the 30th Annual John Fischetti Political Cartoon Competition, hosted by Columbia College Chicago's Journalism Department.

Jules Feiffer was honored with the Second Annual John Fischetti Lifetime Achievement Award, presented to him by last year's inaugural winner, Dick Locher.  Locher and Feiffer are from an old school of cartoonists who were versatile artists.  Locher is known not only for editorial cartooning at Chicago Tribune, but also for working with Chester Gould on the syndicated strip Dick Tracy.  Locher introduced Feiffer as such an all-around creative person, having had his own strip in Village Voice as well as written plays and illustrated children's books, among exploits, that he wouldn't be surprised to see a Jules Feiffer Channel coming soon.

This year is the 50th Anniversary of Feiffer's seminal illustration with Norman Juster's The Phantom Tollbooth, one of my favorite books, said to be a children's book, but I discovered it when my younger sister gave it to me for my 15th birthday and the humor and wordplay can be appreciated at any age.  The illustrations followed and enhanced the text.

Mr Feiffer was very gracious and has a smiling face in repose which was contagious.  The reception not only honored him, but also, the Competition winner Nick Anderson of The Houston Chronicle, and Honorable Mentions Chip Bok of Akron Beacon Journal and Mike Keefe, lately of Denver Post, and was a fundraiser for the Fischetti Scholarship Fund.  All the winning works were sold in a live auction.

Mr Feiffer donated a piece featuring his Comic Strip Dancer celebrating Spring to the silent auction, which featured donations from many, many talented editorial cartoonists.  He will be having a talk on Saturday, 7 April, at 12:30pm, at the Jean Albano Gallery on Superior in Chicago which exhibits his work.

To benefit the Fischetti Scholarship Foundation, the online auction continues through 10 April.  Most minimum bids start at $50, so everything is very affordable (unless the bidding has simply skyrocketed already).  Check it out: http://bit.ly/huieA1http://www.charityauctionstoday.com/store.php?username=crichert

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