Georges Wolinski and His Sharp Cartoons on Sex, Politics, and Society
Being devotees of the cartoon-like works of the Taisho period and comical warai-e pictures by Shozan and Kyosai, which are exposed on this site, we’ve decided to pay attention to one of the masters of Western caricature, French artist Georges Wolinski (1934-2015). He was born in French Tunisia in a Jewish family and lost his father being two years old.
After World War I, he moved to Paris and began studying architecture. First cartoons Wolinski drew at the time of his graduation while contributing to Rustica magazine in 1958. Several years later, he became a chief-editor of Hara-Kiri magazine, which covers you’ve seen in our previous articles (check them out if you haven’t done this yet!).
Fig. 1. Georges Wolinski at the Paris Book Fair in March 2011 (wikipedia.org)
Fig.2. Rustica issue of 1935 (wikipedia.org).
In the early 70s, Wolinski created his Paulette comics series together with Georges Pichard as a drawer (his works we’ll surely examine in our future articles). The main character Paulette Gulderbilt is a rich young woman experiencing numerous adventures with her friend Joseph who was turned into a woman by a magical mole. The creators put an accent on eroticism and made the women looks quite sensual in a standard way (big breasts, seductive clothes, and so on). Paulette appeared on the covers of Charlie Mensuel comics magazine, which was founded by Bernier (the founder and editor of Hara-Kiri), and provoked reactions. This comic strip consists of 7 volumes, which were published from 1971 to 1984. In 1986, Claude Confortès released the film “Poor Little Billionaire” based on the Paulette series.
Fig. 3. Paulette in the Amazon, 1975 (wordpress.com).
Further Career and Death
Wolinski contributed to lots of newspapers, among which were Libération, Paris-Match, L’Écho des savanes, and Charlie Hebdo. In 2005, he was awarded the Grand Prix de la ville d’Angoulême at the Angoulême International Comics Festival and also awarded the Legion of Honour, which is the highest French order of merit for military and civil merits. Wolinski was murdered on January 7, 2015, during a terrorist attack when two gunmen broke into the Charlie Hedbo office and killed 12 people due to blasphemous depictions of Muhammad on the cover of the magazine. The asteroid 293499 Wolinski was named after the artist by its’ discoverer Jean-Claude Merlin on February 22, 2016.
Fig. 4. The cover of Charlie Hebdo with the caricature depiction of Muhammad (Wikipedia.org)
Working in caricature genre, Wolinski was expectably very productive. He lived a relatively long life despite the tragic death (he died at the age of 80) and left thousands of witty drawings (over a thousand images can be found at the site of the National Library of France!). His works are cartoons for adults with their inviting and familiar style of drawing and a thematical approach that is definitely not for kids. Sensual themes are often connected with politics and different issues of modern society, but sometimes Wolinski devotes his images to the sexual sphere itself. Here we face lots of all-time gags like the drawing of a man staring at a woman’s backside with a dialogue: “Woman: What part of my body do you like the most? Man: Eyes” (Fig. 5) or the depiction of a woman asking her partner while sitting on his face: “Why you don’t listen to me?” (Fig. 6) Some gags are not so “traditional” like “My doll!” (Fig. 7) and “The new armchair” (Fig. 8). Both kinds of images are quite amusing to watch, so let’s enjoy them!
Fig. 5. Left: “– What do you look at first in a woman? – Eyes” Right: “– What is the most exciting part of the body in a woman? – Eyes”
Fig. 6. “You could listen to me when I speak”
Fig. 7. “My doll!”
Fig. 8. “I love the design of this new armchair!”
Fig. 9. “I wanted a father and a lover but I didn’t want them to fuck each other!”
Fig. 10. “– And what do you sell in your store? – Red nail polish!”
Fig. 11. “The thirst” (“More! More!”)
Fig. 12. “Hurry, it will cool!”
Fig. 13. “The Dream of Cloning” (“To make love with Dolly’s sisters”)
Fig. 14. “On the left … On the right … At the crossroads you go straight … Be careful, the road is slippery!”
Fig. 15. “Ouah!”
Fig. 16. “It’s always me who does everything in this hut!”
Fig. 17. “The meteorite that proves there is life on Mars” (“I feel the pulsation!”)
Fig. 18. “Vibrations”
Fig. 19. “Speech”
Fig. 20. “The chef’s specialty, you will enjoy yourself!”
Fig. 22. “Pop!”
Fig. 23a: “ – I want to make love with you! – With or without préliminaires? – We could begin with kisses… – With or without tongue? – And then I’d touch your breast… – Left, right, or both?”
Fig. 23b: “- Then we could take off our clothes and copulate. – From the front or from the rear?
–From the front and from the rear. –Excellent, come on, penetrate me! Come on, stick your dick in my ass and fuck me! – It lacks poesy.”
Fig. 23c: “ – You want to declaim or you want me to touch you? – Both. ..That night saw me galloping / In my most beautiful ride / On a pearly filly / Without bridle and without stirrups…
– Continue, it grows hard. – ..I am a man and cannot repeat / The things she said to me.. – Whose this poem is? – Garcia Lorca.”
Fig. 23d: “ – You remind me of the paintings of Klimt! – Come on, you whet me! Who is Klimt? – The Austrian painter who liked drawing women touching themselves… – Like that? – Yeah.
– Honey, the food is ready. – One minute, I prepare something a la Klimt for “Fluide Glacial Magazine”
Fig. 24. “ – I’m teaching your wife scuba diving. – For that, she’s not short of breath!”
Fig. 25. “I love torturing my mind!”
Fig. 26. “When I read to him, he doesn’t think about smoking!”
Fig. 27. “Didn’t all that hair disgust you?”
Fig. 28. “Trio”
Fig. 29. “Is Christine on doping?”
Fig. 30. “Football makes people vulgar” (“Damn! If you could see this disaster!”)
Fig. 31. “ – It is a “duty” for me to be a virgin at marriage. – You are my kind of girl! I really want to ask for your hand!”
Fig. 32.Woman: “Ah! Yeah! Come on!” Girl: “Will you lend him to me later, mum?”
Fig. 33. “For the holidays, we hesitate between visiting Greece, relaxing in Thailand, promenading in USA, exploring England, watching Italy, but finally I think that we’ll stay in France!” (in our times of pandemia this drawing is quite acute!)
Fig. 34. “ – According to this book, 100% of women dream of having sex in nature – Well, we can’t fight statistics.”
Fig. 35. Woman: “Ready! Set! Go!.. Stop! 10, 3 sec. Return to the starting point! To be selected for the International Rapid Ejaculation Competition you need to manage in less than 10 sec”. Man: “I know I can do that!”
Fig. 36. “After the year of the woman. 1976: the year of the cow” (“Say that you feel my big dick!”)
Fig. 37. “ – Do you turn your back on the joys of the flesh? – No, I forgot my condoms”
Fig. 38. Man: “Do you want me to help you?” Woman: “No, thank you, I’ve almost finished”
Fig. 39. “Not tonight, I have a migraine”
Fig. 40. “Yoga”
Fig. 41. “Trio”
Fig. 42. “I wonder why men persist in sticking their dicks in my belly?”
Fig. 43. “The public is suspicious of the media” (– This ass is impossible! – I’ll tell you what’s impossible, these tits!)
Fig. 44. “Agricultural Centre. Chirac introduces Cesar to Monica Bellucci” (“What a talent!”)
Fig. 45. “Fingering” (artnet.com)
Click HERE for the Japanese erotic cartoons of the Meiji artist Terazaki Kogyo….!!
Sources: all images except where it’s mentioned are taken from gallica.bnf.fr
wikipedia.org, wordpress.com, artnet.com
Given our own content, we at Shunga Gallery are very committed to the freedom of expression. What role does this play in your own life? Leave your reaction in the comment box below…!!