Wednesday, June 12, 2024

African American Cartoonist Barbara Brandon-Croft’s Editorial Cartoon Workshop in Nigeria with Tayo Fatunla As Guest Facilitator

Barbara Brandon-Croft and TAYO Fatunla - Facilitators
Barbara Brandon-Croft and TAYO Fatunla – Facilitators

*PUNCH Media Foundation (PMF) with support from the U.S. Consulate, Lagos, held an Editorial Cartooning Workshop themed Sketch & Satire: The Art & Impact of Editorial Cartooning in Nigeria. This workshop was designed for experienced editorial cartoonists to elevate their craft, foster innovation, and build a vibrant community of cartoonists contributing to informed public discourse.

Award-winning African American editorial cartoonist, Barbara Brandon-Croft, who ran the workshop traveled to Nigeria for this purpose. It was held from February 19 and 21, 2024, at the American Corner, Lekki, Lagos. Other resource persons involved, included TAYO Fatunla, Ed Keazor, Abigail Ogwezzy, Muyiwa Kayode, Dr Akin Onipede, Dr Ganiyu Akinloye Jimoh, and Ayodele Elegba. The workshop featured, interactive workshops, engagement with experts, networking opportunities, and panel discussions. Nigerian media houses lined up that participated included The Punch, Daily Trust, New Telegraph, The Sun, Tribune, The Will, Premium Times, The Guardian, Vanguard, Business Day, Daily Watch, Blueprint, and Triumph.

Barbara Brandon-Croft became the first Black woman cartoonist in the United States to cross the color line into the mainstream press in 1989 with her cartoon feature Where I’m Coming From, which first appeared in The Detroit Free Press. In 1991, Universal Press Syndicate began distributing it nationally in more than 60 newspapers in the U.S. and abroad until 2005. Last year, Drawn + Quarterly published a compilation of selected strips and the story of her career. Brandon-Croft is the youngest daughter of pioneer cartoonist Brumsic Brandon, Jr. who created Luther in the late sixties and was later syndicated by the Los Angeles Times Syndicate until 1986.

Both cartoonists, father and daughter, have been featured in several editions of Best Editorial Cartoons of the Year, published by Pelican Press and their original works are in the permanent collections of cartoon art in the Library of Congress in Washington D.C. and the Billy Ireland Cartoon Library and Museum at The Ohio State University, in Columbus, Ohio.

On the opening day, guest facilitator, TAYO Fatunla, ex-cartoonist f Punch newspapers, designer, illustrator, caricaturist, storyteller, and cartoon tutor, gave a historical overview of editorial cartooning in Nigeria with his well-received PowerPoint and talk presentation. He shared local historical perspectives and explored the influence of cartoons on Nigerian democracy. He also shared concise examples of how editorial cartoons have shaped the democratic processes in Nigeria and looked into the future of Cartooning in Nigeria.

Sketch and Satire - Editorial Cartooning workshop
Sketch and Satire – Editorial Cartooning Workshop
A caricature presented to Barbara Brandon-Croft by Cartoonists of the Cartoonists Association of Nigeria presented to her by Dada Adekola president of the association
A caricature presented to Barbara Brandon-Croft by Cartoonists of the Cartoonists Association of Nigeria presented to her by Dada Adekola president of the association
Barbara Brandon-Croft presented cartoonist Don Marvey with certificte of participation
Barbara Brandon-Croft presented cartoonist Don Marvey with certificate of participation
Some Nigerian cartoonists who were invited to the Punch Media Fund program
Some Nigerian cartoonists who were invited to the Punch Media Fund program

Brandon-Croft spoke about the role of editorial cartoonists in the democratic process (Global, U.S., and Nigeria perspectives). And as editorial cartoonists, what do we hope to do?

The program has had good feedback from Nigerian cartoonists in attendance. This has also given them the opportunity for all to be under one roof and share ideas together as well as contributing immensely to the program. A certificate of participation was handed to the invited cartoonists.

Brandon-Croft said, that being amid so many Cartoonists of color under one roof has been a great experience. Barbara and TAYO are pioneers of Comic Art in their own right and were both honoured with the ECBACC Pioneer/ Lifetime Achievement Awards 2018 in Philadelphia, US.

TAYO Fatunla
TAYO Fatunla

TAYO Fatunla whose work has been featured on via is an award-winning British-Nigerian Comic Artist, Editorial Cartoonist, Writer, and Illustrator and is an artist of the African diaspora. He is a graduate of the prestigious Kubert School, in New Jersey, US, and recipient of the 2018 ECBACC Pioneer Lifetime Achievement Award for his illustrated OUR ROOTS creation and series – Famous people in Black History – He participated at UNESCO’s Cartooning In Africa forum held in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia and the Cartooning Global Forum in Paris, France and has held a virtual OUR ROOTS cartoon workshop for SMITHSONIAN- National Museum of African Art, Washington D.C. His Fela Kuti image is prominently featured in Burna Boy’s mega-Afrobeat hit song “Ye”. –

MORE NEWS ON EURWEB: The Longevity of Tayo Fatunla’s Illustrated OUR ROOTS

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