Cartoonist Art Spiegelman Awarded the 2018 Edwin McDowell Medal

Novelist Michael Chabon will present cartoonist Art Spiegelman the 2018 Edward McDowell Medal for outstanding contributions to American culture August 12 at a ceremony on the Edwin McDowell Colony grounds in New Hampshire.

Art Spiegelman is best known for his graphic memoir Maus: A Survivor's Tale, the story of his father’s experiences in a Nazi concentration camp during the Holocaust, which was awarded the Pulitzer Prize in 1992. The book is credited with highlighting the ability of comics to address serious topics, bringing a newfound literary respectability to the comics medium.

The award recipient was chosen by a selection committee that included Alison Bechdel, Hillary Chute, Julia Jacquette, James Sturm and Gene Yang. The Edwin McDowell Colony is a retreat that invites a wide range of artists to come and complete their works. It is 111 years old and located at 100 High Street in Peterborough, New Hampshire.

Chabon, who is also the MacDowell Colony chairman, said, "the increased cultural prominence of Comic Art and its once-wayward practitioners can largely be laid at the feet of a single artist: Art Spiegelman, whose work, tragic and shticky, personal and world-historical, grand and intimate, sophisticated and deceptively crude, changed the world of Spiegelman’s beloved ‘comix’—simply changed the world—forever.”

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