The great temporary exhibitions

07.02.12 > 23.09.12

Marten Toonder Centenary

The comic strip writer, illustrator and author Marten Toonder has enchanted several generations of readers with his Panda and Tom Puss series published in the daily press in many countries.

The exhibition at the Belgian Comic Strip Center marks the start of a year of international celebration of the work of this 20th century storyteller, born in Rotterdam in 1912, whose bust is prominently placed in the Dutch Museum of Literature in The Hague, Holland. Initially written for children, the Tom Puss stories gradually won over an older audience charmed by their ironic tone, their idealism, their questioning of society, their strong characters and their acerbic criticism of that strange mammal known as man. The stories also touch upon issues such as drugs, environmental pollution, politics, greed and unemployment, while the animals display typical human emotions such as loneliness, love, friendship, deceitfulness and selfishness.

While the characters may be furry, feathered or scaled, the Tom Puss stories are above all about the great human family.

A master of visual comedy, Toonder has drawn part of his œuvre in classic comic strip form with speech bubbles, while other work takes the form of cartoon strips without dialogue accompanied by text below. Many of Holland’s finest artists worked in his studios, and he is regarded as a master of words by the writers in his country.

As well as this exhibition at the Belgian Comic Strip Center devoted to the life and work of the man known as ‘the Dutch Walt Disney’, a number of other exhibitions will take place in Holland in 2012, along with a musical comedy. Several new works will also be published.


Curator: Geert De Weyer

With the support of the Brussels Capital Region and the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Brussels and in collaboration with the Toonder Compagnie and the Dutch Museum of Literature

Tags : Museum

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