Peter van Dongen
(Amsterdam, 1966) is a graphic novelist and illustrator. In 1990 his Muizentheater (The Mice Theatre), appeared, about two brothers in a time of crisis and war. It won him the Stripschap-penning (a Dutch cartoonists' prize) for best album. In 1998 and 2004 he published Rampokan: Java and Rampokan: Celebes, a diptych set on the eve of the colonial war the Dutch fought in Indonesia. These books have meanwhile appeared in French, German and Indonesian translation. For Dutch daily NRC's Literary Supplement, Van Dongen drew fifty writers portraits. November 2017 he published Familieziek (Family Sickness), his graphic-novel adaptation of the novel Repatriated (2002) by Adriaan van Dis; it is a story about an Indonesian family, survivors of the Japanese camps, that tries to settle in the Netherlands during the fifties.(2017)
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Peter van Dongen has turned Familieziek (Family Disease), the autobiographical novel by Adriaan van Dis, into a graphic novel. It is a story told in scenes about an Indonesian family affected by the war, which tries to land on their feet in the Netherlands of the 1950s.
Van Dongen worked closely with Van Dis on the project. During Writers Unlimited, the graphic novelist looks back on this collaboration, including the exciting relationship between the words of the writer and the images of the artist and the story that binds it all together.
It's not surprising that the two authors understand one another. In 1998, Van Dongen - child of an Indonesian mother and Dutch-German father - caused a stir with Rampokan: Java, a historical and psychological graphic novel in clear-line style that takes place during the colonial war fought by the Netherlands in the former Dutch Indies. Part two, Rampokan: Celebes, was published in 2004.
The former Dutch Indies are also central to Familieziek. The 2002 novel is about a family from the colonies that builds a new life in the Netherlands.
Peter van Dongen, maker of comic strips, has chosen a text by the Dutch East-Indian writer Tjalie Robinson as the text of his life. He will explain why to the audience and to hostesses Aleid Truijens and Manon Uphoff. In Dutch.
One image can hit you harder than a thousand words. A conversation among three Dutch strip cartoonists who in sweeping stories enter upon big issues. They have elevated the strip cartoon to new heights. What can you put into words and what do you have to conjure up in images? Thé Tjong-Khing, now one of Holland's most popular illustrators of children's books, uses hard-boiled satire, Peter van Dongen deals with major taboos, while Barbara Stok aims at making the intimate universal. In Dutch.