City Hall has a couple of gallery spaces with a rotating schedule of artists featured throughout the year. In October, one of those spaces was given over to a show on the works of Terry Mosher, who works under the professional name Aislin as an editorial cartoonist for the Montreal Gazette. Born here in Ottawa and spending his professional life in Montreal, he has worked in the field for fifty years, first at the Montreal Star before moving to the Gazette. He has recently published a volume, From Trudeau To Trudeau: Fifty Years Of Cartooning as a retrospective, the latest of a good number of books with his work. Aislin has had many honours of his profession, including the Order of Canada, the Canadian News Hall of Fame... and the distinction of being the very first editorial cartoonist denounced in the House of Commons. The entrance featured this whimsical sculpture of the man himself.
Aislin (a spelling variation on the names of one of his daughters) started his career shortly before Pierre Trudeau became prime minister, and now with Justin Trudeau in the same position, his latest book title is fitting. Portraits of him with father and son, decades apart, were also featured at the entrance.
The rest of the space was given to some of his multitude of work, ranging from sports, the city of Montreal, the province of Quebec, the country, and the world. One section featured the devout love Montrealers have for the Canadiens of the National Hockey League.
More works here included contemporary and historical figures, both here and abroad, often with a wink of the eye or a well deserved barb, as the job requires.
Here we have some examples of how Aislin has addressed the Royal Family over time, with a comparison photograph and a formal letter from the Queen's office inquiring as to the meaning of one of them accompanying the cartoons.
My American readers can relate to these two. Apologies to Donald Duck and the pig, both of whom are far smarter and better socially adjusted than Agent Orange.
The previous and totally not missed federal government under Stephen Harper is the focus of these.
Occasionally Aislin has done montages like this large one for Quebec City, carrying his brand of humour throughout.
He has also been the subject of a documentary in recent years.
These have something of an international tone, capturing Vladimir Putin, gun violence, terrorism, and the impact of AIDS in the Third World.
More international material here, particularly American presidents. I have more from this exhibition in tomorrow's post.