We're delighted to welcome a new cartoonist from Israel to our community: Kfir Weizman is a cartoonist, illustrator and animator based in Modi'in.
Last year, we produced a number of cartoons for the Sphere Project, to be used in a campaign to raise awareness of the importance of universal standards in the field of humanitarian aid. It has taken some time, but this week the campaign was launched. The Sphere Project has published a series of six posters and six matching postcards featuring humanitarian messages illustrated with cartoons. The posters and postcards are available in Arabic, English, French and Spanish.
"With this campaign we would like to highlight the crucial role and value of the Humanitarian Charter within the architecture of Sphere principles and standards," says Linda Poteat, Sphere Director ad interim.
Poteat hopes that the posters and postcards "will help increase the awareness of the Charter among the community of Sphere practitioners and encourage them to study it with greater attention, as it's really the foundation on which the Sphere building rests."
Read more about this project and see all the poster designs on the website of the Sphere Project.
Also on their website, you can find out how to obtain a set of posters and post cards; they are free (only shipping costs apply).
Ahmet Aykanat is a cartoonist from Turkey. He has been publishing cartoons since 1969, winning wide recognition in competitions, exhibitions and festivals. He is currently developing educational programs with cartoons.
We're very pleased to welcome Michel Moro Gómez (MORO), yet another cartoonist from Cuba, to Cartoon Movement. Although our world outlook might slant slightly with so many Cubans in our midst, there is just no denying they make excellent cartoons.
As the days are getting shorter and colder (in our part of the world), we have some new comics lined up between now and Christmas. Time for a short overview:
Still to come are chapter 4 and 5 of our comic A Century of Silent Helpers. Chapter 4 looks at the rise of state funded development aid in the Netherlands between 1970 and 2010. In this period, the government became the biggest funder of Dutch development aid.
The financial and economic crisis, government budget constraints and changing public opinion put an end to all that. NGOs are forced to look elsewhere to ensure their financial future. Chapter 5 is about the future of helping. We ask a number of experts how they see the future of development aid.
Another project we're working on is a series of comics on post-election violence in Kenya and Ivory Coast for the new platform Justice Hub. The series will tell personal stories of people affected by the violence. We currently have two comic of about five pages each in production.
The first is an account of Amadou Tall from Ivory Coast, who was beaten severely by government soldiers in 2010 because they suspected him of being a youth leader responsible for organizing protests against the election results. This comic is drawn by an artist from Ivory Coast, Roland Polman.
The second comic we're maing is by Victor Ndula (who already has published two comics with us). It is the sad story of a young girl that got raped in the turmoil that followed elections in Kenya in 2007. The rape resulted in a pregnancy. When she looks at her now six-year-old daughter she can feel only hatred.
All these comics will be interactive, including (custom-made) videos, links and other resources that will provide detailed context and background to these stories.
For 2015, we're planning the production of a longer comic for the London School of Economics, on witch hunting in Africa. This is still a huge problem. To give an example, a United Nations study of prisons found in recent years that more than half of the people being held in prisons in the Central African Republic had been accused of witchcraft. We will keep you posted on the progress.
Each year, Cartoonists Rights Network International hands out the Courage in Editorial Cartooning Award to a cartoonist in great danger who has demonstrated exceptional courage in the exercise of free speech rights under extraordinary circumstances.
This year, for the first time, the award is given to two women cartoonists. Globally, women only constitute 10% of the political cartooning population. The recipients are Indian cartoonist Kanika Mishra and Palestinian cartoonist Majda Shaheen.
One of Kanika's cartoons, depicting Asaram and his unwillingness to face a narco or polygraph test to prove his innocence.
Indian cartoonist Kanika Mishra, a resident in the city of Mumbai, was selected for her valor and exercise of free speech during a time of great peril. She received numerous threats from followers of a local holy man, Asaram Bapu, who were enraged at the humorous and focused cartoons she drew of his illegal sexual exploits. During this period she received phone calls from Bapu supporters threatening to kill her and her family.
When Kanika got word that popular cult leader Bapu had been accused of raping the 16-year old daughter of two of his followers, she reacted in the most powerful way she could. Four hours after hearing that there was a police manhunt for Bapu, Kanika tweeted and posted to her Facebook page a cartoon tweaking Bapu supporters’ blind faith in their guru. Kanika followed her post with more cartoons, one of him being hauled off to jail.
Reaction to Kanika’s cartoons was immediate. She soon began receiving requests for interviews from India Today and India’s most watched news channel, Aaj Tak. Following the media interest, a groundswell of new threats from Bapu's supporters broke loose. Throughout the siege by Bapu’s supporters she continued to take on Bapu's outrageous hypocrisy through her cartoons.
The award is also given to Palestinian cartoonist Majda Shaheen. In her cartoon, she depicts her view on the relationship between Ismail Haniyeh the senior political leader of Hamas and the Al-Quds Brigades. Angered by the cartoon, the official website of the Al Qud Brigade asked for details regarding her whereabouts in hopes of scaring her and her family. One site featured a picture of someone with the same name, with the word 'Execution' placed on it. Following numerous death threats, Majda Shaheen withdrew the cartoon from her Facebook page.
Majda is a member of Cartoon Movement, you can see more of her work here.
This year’s ceremony will take place on October 11th in San Francisco, California USA during the annual convention of the Association of American Editorial Cartoonists from the 9th to the 11th.
Next month, Cartoon Movement will be present at the Americas Latin Eco-Festival, an event that aims to strengthen the voice of the Latino community on issues relating to climate change and environmental justice. The festival takes place in Boulder, Colorado (USA) from 11 to 15 September.
Our contribution is an exhibition titled 'Drawing Attention: Cartoons on the Environment'. It will feature 250 cartoons: an exhibit of 50 physical cartoons and an additional digital presentation of 200 cartoons, bringing together perspectives on sustainability, pollution, resource scarcity and social and environmental justice. A lot of the contributing artists come from Latin America, but there is also space for perspectives from the rest of the world.
Featured most prominently will be the graphic work of Cubal artist Alex Falco Chang, whose bold images do not need words to convey a powerful message.
Some of the cartoons that will be on display at the exhbition, by Falco (Cuba), Pedro X. Molina (Nicaragua), and Chubasco (Mexico).