Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Ten Minutes With Matt Davies

Pulitzer Prize Winning cartoonist



Matt Davies has won the Pulitzer Prize and his editorial cartoons have appeared in the New York Times, Washington Post, USA Today, Newsweek, Time, and Mad. Currently drawing for Tribune Media Services and The Hearst Newspaper Group, the London-born artist moved to Westport in 1983, but now calls Wilton home. Davies’ first children’s book, Ben Rides On, debuts this spring.

So how did you get involved in editorial cartooning?
I planned to study English Lit and creative writing, but decided to take a year, and go to art school at Savannah College of Art and Design. The South, especially then, was bizarre politically—not in your face, but occasionally something flared, especially racial issues. My political sense of right and wrong switched on. I started getting published—the Village Voice, the Norwalk Hour. Gannett Newspapers, including USA Today, hired me after a year of freelancing.

Not everyone agrees with you…
Early on, a right winger objected to a cartoon and called me. He was much more informed than I, much better at arguing. Until then, I’d never encountered a real right winger, only people who agreed with me. I learned—never weigh in on anything without knowing both sides. Listen to conservatives and liberals, and consider both. You might think, ‘They hate me’, but feedback helps you grow thick-skinned, and you can learn from it. It’s really a two-way conversation.

Who’s fun to draw?
W., Bill and Hillary Clinton, Obama. And Mitt Romney—he’s so Ken doll-ish. Cartoonists want the most hideous, out-there politicians. I think our country would fall apart with a President Cheney, but he would be cartooning’s future. Rick Perry—great looking, slightly crazy. Anyone crazy enough to run for President. It’s why cartooning was invented.

What is Ben Rides On about?
The story confronts bullying without trying too hard to make a point. Ben must decide whether to save his tormentor. Ben looks exactly like me as a kid. I thought long and hard about whether the character should be a girl or a minority, but I didn’t want to push an agenda. I decided, “First book—do what I know.” It’s semi-autobiographical—fantasy, but the essence is very real.

Your wife is from Westport, but you moved to Wilton.
We wanted a barn, something rural, but not too far away from anything. Wilton may as well be 100 miles from Westport. It feels like Westport used to—small town, but also cosmopolitan-ish. I’ve met many creative people here. I don’t wear a tie or look professional. Joey Pants once came over to me and an illustrator friend at Starbucks and asked, “What are you guys, filmmakers?” He sat right down. I love that about Wilton. It also has better schools, balancing insane, rigid teaching-to-the-test with vital creative areas like music and art. We came for the schools, but stayed for the beer, now that we can buy it here.      

 

Connect With Us

         

Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Catch the Vibe Newsletter

See what's happening in the area this weekend
Edit ModuleShow Tags Edit ModuleShow Tags

Archive »Related Content

Ten Minutes With Betty Jones

Singing all her life, but never envisioned her voice would one day take her around the world. An internationally renowned opera singer, and Wilton resident, she launched her operatic career at 41, after singing for many years in the Wilton Congregational Church choir. Since then, she has performed leading roles with major American and international opera companies.

Ten Minutes With Jay Fielden

The editor of Town & Country talks about revamping his magazine, moving to Wilton, and rebounding after his house burning down

Ten Minutes With Laura McEwen

Ten Minutes with Harry Clark

Cinematographer Harry Clark shoots commercials, music videos, documentaries, and movies—he sat behind Matt Damon, filming him driving a speeding car in Bourne Ultimatum—but during his spare time, he builds with stones.

Ten Minutes with Jen Shelley

Jen Shelley, an accomplished and largely self-taught artist, came to painting professionally later in life, after a divorce and her two children were grown. Shelley, who has lived in Wilton for 45 years and has had her paintings exhibited in many shows in New York City and Connecticut, talks about her work with Wilton Magazine.

Profiles

Your Guides to Leading Local Professionals

Edit ModuleShow Tags

Edit ModuleShow Tags

February 2016

This unique event, hosted by Ken Tuccio, is unlike anything previously seen in the South Norwalk bar scene. SONO BOWL will feature fun and entertaining crowd participation games, in which...

Cost: $15 - 21 & older only

Where:
The Blind Rhino
15 N Main Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Art as fashion is on display at the City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery in its winter exhibit, “LINE”. “LINE” features the works of...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Art as fashion is on display at the City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery in its winter exhibit, “LINE”. “LINE” features the works of...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Art as fashion is on display at the City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery in its winter exhibit, “LINE”. “LINE” features the works of...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The Wilton Historical Society is hosting two chocolate making workshops on Thursday Feb. 11th.  The first workshop is for children in grades K-8 and will be held from 3 to 4 pm. Children...

Cost: Kids: $10, Adults: $25 ($5 discount for all members)

Where:
Wilton Historical Society
224 Danbury Road/Rt 7
Wilton, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Art as fashion is on display at the City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery in its winter exhibit, “LINE”. “LINE” features the works of...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Art as fashion is on display at the City of Norwalk Parking Authority’s Maritime Garage Gallery in its winter exhibit, “LINE”. “LINE” features the works of...

Cost: Free and open to the public

Where:
Maritime Garage Gallery
11 North Water Street
Norwalk, CT  06854
View map »


Sponsor: Norwalk Parking Authority
Telephone: 203-831-9063
Contact Name: Maritime Garage Gallery
Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Surprise your loved one this Valentine's Day by making a one of a kind chocolate confection while enjoying a cup of our signature Hot Chocolate and a slice of cake. You will leave with a...

Cost: $75

Where:
LE ROUGE CHOCOLATES & CAKES BY AARTI
190 Main Street
Westport, CT
View map »


Website »

More information

Winter may finally be here but fortunately the art exhibition, “February Awakenings – Five Artists,” that opens Friday, Feb. 5, from 6 to 7:30 p.m., will warm the chill that is in...

Cost: Free

Where:
The Wilton Library
137 Old Ridgefield Road
Wilton, CT
View map »


Telephone: 203-762- 3950
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
Edit ModuleShow Tags
Edit ModuleShow Tags