Big ears, freckles on puffy cheeks and a mischievous grin revealing the tooth gap of a young boy. That is the cover of the American humor magazine MAD. It often depicts public figures in satirical ways to comment on the cultural landscape and to resonate with current events in the world.
In 1967 a foreign issue was founded for Germany and the highly recognisable covers soon became an integral part of the German magazine shelf. With a history of more than 50 years, these images are to some extent an embodiment of the German understanding of caricature, yet they were drawn by Thai hands.
In 1976 Apichai Bhakdibutr came to Germany to first start an apprenticeship as a carpenter and later enrolled in an art school in Stuttgart. When one of his sketches ended up on the editor’s desk of MAD magazine in Frankfurt, the young Thai artist got a job doing artworks. The first years he was only doing the inside pages. By 1980, he was doing the covers and developed his own style.
The Woof Pack now exhibits more than 20 of his artworks reminding us of an era where technology had not yet been a part of the creative process. Despite the technological advances, it is astonishing to see how applicable 1980s satire is on today’s times.
The exhibition was created by Woof Pack in collaboration with the Goethe-Institut Thailand.