“The name Aislin is derived from a Gaelic word meaning ‘dream’, but to many of the more dubious members of Canada’s political class, Aislin is something more of a nightmare. It’s a name that has become synonymous with biting political satire and razor-sharp wit. But more importantly he is Canada’s most celebrated shit disturber. – Rick Mercer
Caricature Cartoon Canada is “the best of the best”: a brilliant collection of personal favourites from Canada’s best cartoonists, published in both official languages. In it, editor and legendary Montreal Gazette cartoonist Terry Mosher (Aislin) has provided an unforgettable snapshot of contemporary Canadian concerns and attitudes – some quite controversial – illustrated through the wit and wisdom of the country’s premier cartoonists.
The book will be featured at an exhibition of Canadian political cartoons at the McCord Museum during the convention of the Association of Canadian Editorial Cartoonists this June in Montreal, coinciding with the opening of the 33rd Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, the International des Feux Loto-Québec fireworks festival and Canada Day festivities.
The first known North American caricatures were drawn in 1759 during the battle for Quebec by Brigadier-General George Townshend, who was third in command to British General James Wolfe. During the long siege at Quebec, Townshend drew several wicked cartoons of Wolfe (including one comparing his commanding officer to the tyrant Oliver Cromwell). Townshend was not lampooning Montcalm and the French enemy forces, but poking fun at his own in a true satirical sense. Ironically, Wolfe died on the Plains of Abraham, and it was Townshend who accepted Montcalm’s surrender and signed the peace treaty.
Although political cartooning was popular in Canada in the 19th and 20th centuries, it wasn’t until the 1940’s and 1950’s that the form really came into its own, with Duplessis and Diefenbaker regularly skewered by Robert LaPalme in Le Devoir and Duncan MacPherson in the Toronto Star. Len Norris, the third in this triumvirate of internationally recognized social satirists, became a household name in Vancouver for his portrayals of local social and political foibles. Since then, Canadian daily newspapers from coast to coast have carried on the tradition of biting satire, elegantly drawn.
Contributors featured in the book include: Roy Peterson (The Vancouver Sun), Edd Uluschak (The Edmonton Journal), Vance Rodewait (The Calgary Herald), Andy Donato (The Toronto Sun), Brian Gable (The Globe and Mail), Jean-Pierre Girerd (La Presse), Roland Pier (Le Journal de Montréal), Serge Chapleau (La Presse), Terry Mosher (The Montreal Gazette), Bruce MacKinnon (The Chronicle Herald), Marc Beaudet (Le Journal de Montréal), Michel Garneau (Le Devoir), Cameron Cardeau (The Ottawa Citizen), Sue Dewar (The Ottawa Sun), Patrick Corrigan (The Toronto Star), Tony Jenkins (The Globe and Mail) Gary Clement (The National Post), Graeme MacKay (The Hamilton Spectator), Dale Cummings (The Winnipeg Free Press), Malcolm Myers (The Edmonton Journal), John Larter (The Calgary Herald) and many more.
Publishing simultaneously is Mosher’s own book Was It Good for You? -- more Aislin-inspired comic relief for the Canada Day weekend, poking fun at everything from Montreal’s crumbling infrastructure, to Quebec nationalism, to Harper’s year of majority – and forty years of watching Canadian Prime Ministers come and go.
About Terry Mosher (Aislin)
Aislin (Terry Mosher), one of Canada’s most beloved and prolific cartoonists, was inducted in the Canadian Cartoonists’ Hall of Fame in May 2012. This year marks his 70th birthday and his 40th year publishing acerbic and often hilarious cartoons in the Montreal Gazette. He has won two National Newspaper Awards and five individual prizes from the international Salon of Caricature. Mosher is a member of the Canadian News Hall of Fame and an Officer of the Order of Canada, and he holds an honorary Doctor of Letters from McGill University. Was It Good For You? is his 45th book. He’s aiming for 50. For more information, visit http://www.aislin.com.
July 2014. The Literary Press Group of Canada celebrates the Stephen Leacock Festival -- and humour in Canada with a nice nod to Caricature Cartoon Canada, edited by Terry Mosher (LLP 2012), one of the most delightfully funny books of this or any other year.
The Canada Day Countdown wraps up with a cascade of media on Caricature Cartoon Canada -- the book, the exhibition, the events, and the history of Canadian cartooning.
The Toronto Star publishes on opinion piece on The Bite of Editorial Cartoons, andThe Gazette does the cartoonists proud with its coverage, including an in-depth feature article by Marian Scott on the role of cartoonists in Quebec and in Canada as a whole and a video of Thursday night's event with the New Yorker cartoonists. During which Justin Trudeau donned a shower cap to remind us all of La Presse cartoonist Serge Chapleau's iconic drawing of former Bloc québécois leader Gilles Duceppe on a visit to a cheese factory.
Trudeau also slipped on his father's buckskin jacket, saying, "And the jacket fits!" Which might turn out to be his declaration that he is indeed running for the Liberal leadership.
Shower caps put in another appearance Friday night at the McCord launch, when Chapleau put one on as he was introducing Gilles Duceppe to the crowd.
The whole audience then pulled their own shower caps out of their pockets and put them on, too. Much merriment, and Duceppe a good sport.
Another fun event Saturday, this one the banquet for the Association of Canadian Editorial Cartoonists (ACEC), starring The Right Honorable Paul Martin in conversation with Chapleau and Terry Mosher.
Lots more media now and to come -- including Power and Politics, Canada AM., and Q.
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