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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    Cartoonist visits UA

    Arizona Daily Star political cartoonist David Fitzsimmons talks about the role of political cartoons in todays world at the UA Museum of Art yesterday.
    Arizona Daily Star political cartoonist David Fitzsimmons talks about the role of political cartoons in today’s world at the UA Museum of Art yesterday.

    David Fitzsimmons, a self-described “”cynic”” and political cartoonist for the Arizona Daily Star, spoke about his career in relation to Francisco de Goya’s socially and politically themed etchings at the UA Museum of Art yesterday afternoon.

    The 30-minute talk was hosted in the Kesser Gallery, which is currently featuring Goya’s work.

    “”I focus on humor because it has a mass-market appeal,”” said Fitzsimmons, also a former cartoonist for the Arizona Daily Wildcat.

    Compared to Goya’s work, “”my work has the impact and value of bumper stickers,”” he said.

    Fitzsimmons said he began his career in high school, drawing cartoons about the Vietnam War, in which two of his brothers fought. He then listed the many wars since the 1960s that have allowed him to stay busy.

    The cartoons are important because they give social commentary on the government and its faults.

    Giselle Laiduc,
    undeclared freshman

    “”The reason Goya’s work is timeless is because we don’t learn from our past,”” Fitzsimmons said. “”But, unlike Goya, we live in a society that values the freedom of expression.””

    Fitzsimmons drew on a large notebook throughout the talk to illustrate key points. He also impersonated voices and made jokes, which drew frequent laughs from the audience of approximately 50 students and Tucson residents.

    He also demonstrated the art of drawing caricatures, during which he drew President George W. Bush.

    “”To me, he looks a lot like Curious George,”” he said.

    Afterward, Fitzsimmons held a Q-and-A session during which he revealed he tends to censor himself on the topics of sexual imagery, metaphors and some religious subjects.

    Fitzsimmons was asked why he stayed away from religious topics.

    “”Can you imagine the firestorm in Arizona?”” he said. “”I don’t want to draw images that will obscure meaning.””

    Fitzsimmons also revealed that he receives his fair share of hate mail.

    “”I enjoy it,”” he said. “”But I have received death threats over what I thought were very trivial cartoons.””

    Giselle Laiduc, an undeclared freshman, attended the talk for extra credit. She said she sometimes reads political cartoons.

    “”The cartoons are important because they give social commentary on the government and its faults,”” Laiduc said. “”I really liked (Fitzsimmons’) ability to relate his work to Goya’s. It was also pretty funny to hear about his hate-mail stories.””

    Robert Mion, a Wildcat advertising designer and a visual communication illustration junior, came to the talk after a professor told him about it.

    “”The talk was like if Robin Williams drew political cartoons,”” Mion said. “”It was funny for all the right reasons, and it’s good to laugh about politics sometimes.””

    “”I liked the caricature drawing because it shows how every single part of it has a specific purpose,”” Mion added. “”And that way, something good came from Bush, for once.””

    As a final comparison to Goya’s work, Fitzsimmons said, “”This (exhibit) could be called, ‘Goya presents: Shit Happens.’ “”

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