Art Spiegelman


By: Tsechu Dolma and Dylan Maida


date of birth: 2/15/1948
birthplace: Stockholm, Sweden
immigrated to the the United States, specifically Rego Park, Queens, near the Queens Center Mall.

Family History

He was the only living child of Anja and Vladek Spiegelman.

He had never met his late older brother Richeu Spiegelman.

Richeu died during the Second World War.

Both Art's parents were Polish-Jewish descent and were both Holocaust, concentration camp survivors.

After the war they immigrated to the United States, it was always Vladek's dream to immigrate to the United States.

In an 1986 interview with People, Spiegelman admitted that it was only after leaving home that he realized "that not everybody had parents who woke up screaming in the night."

Early life

He was exposed to cartoons during his high school days.
He attended the High School of Art and Design in New York City.
He became a professional cartoonist at the age of sixteen.
After high school he attended Binghampton University it was called Harpur College back then and majored in art and philosophy.
His parents wanted him to become a dentist however, he pursued art.
Instead of graduating from Harpur College, he left school and joined the Underground Comix movement in 1968.
In the late winter of 1968, he suffered a nervous breakdown, after his release from a mental hospital, his mother, Anja, committed suicide.

Early in the scene of cartoon
He was major figure in underground Comics movement of the 60s and 70s.
In the 70s he contributed to various publications of Real Pul, Young Lust, and Bizarre Sex.
He helped co-found the publications of Arcade.
Much of his earlier work concerned itself with experimenting with the techniques and language of comics rather than a specific plot or narrative.

After working in Arcade with Bill Griffith, Speigelman vowed never again to edit another magazine.

However after returning to New York, he met Francoise Mouly who persuaded him to try again.

Together the founded the RAW magazine. It was avant-garde, and self-published.

THrough RAW, he exposed many different talented comics of our times.

Maus series' impact on Spiegelman's life
Spiegelman first published Maus in Funny Animals in 1972.
His career then took flight. In RAW, Spiegelman published his serialization of Maus appearing in every subsequent series.

Maus was based on his parent's experience as concentration camp survivors.

He then expanded his cartoons to full-blow comic book, which he drew from 80-86.

His book Maus, earned him fame.

He published his book Maus I: A Survivor's Tale, in 1986.

He published the sequel Maus II: And Here My Troubles Began, in 1991.

He travelled to his parent's house in Sosnowiec, Poland in 1978.
He also travelled to Auschwit and Birkenau in 1986 to see the sites for himself and view art created by survivors.

Unfortunately, Spiegelman's father died four years before the book was published.

Fame through Maus

Maus attracted an unprecedented amount of critical attention for a work in the form of comics.

He had an exhibition in the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

And he won a special Pulitzer Prize in 1992.

Spiegelman through the 90s and today

Beside his illustrations for books in the 1990s, he designed covers for New Yorker, and The Wild Party.

He used his editorial skill to put together the children's magazine 'Little Lit' containing comics for both kids and parents.

In the wake of the disaster of September 11, 2001, Spiegelman created a Sunday page format story about the terrorist assault in NYC, 'In the Shadow of No Tower.'

He currently lives in Green street/ Canal Street Lower Manhattan with his wife and two children.

"Art Spiegelman... to the comics world is a Michelangelo and a Medici both, an influential artist who is also an impresario and an enabler of others." (
The New York Times Magazine).
"It would be almost impossible to overstate the influence of Maus among other artists" (
The New York Times Magazine//).

Work Citation