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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.      

 

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May 2016

On Friday, April 29th Westport First Selectman Jim Marpe and Serena & Lily co-founders Serena Dugan and Lily Kanter invite the public to join...

Cost: Free

Where:
35 Elm Street
Westport, CT
View map »

More information

The exhibition Robert Rauschenberg: Spreads and Related Works is a group of paintings and works on paper chosen to compliment the painting Recital (Spread), 1980 which Philip Johnson purchased...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: The Glass House
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

The Glass House is pleased to present Yayoi Kusama: Narcissus Garden, a landscape installation that will be on view throughout the 2016 tour season to celebrate the 110th anniversary of Philip...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The exhibition Robert Rauschenberg: Spreads and Related Works is a group of paintings and works on paper chosen to compliment the painting Recital (Spread), 1980 which Philip Johnson purchased...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: The Glass House
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

The Glass House is pleased to present Yayoi Kusama: Narcissus Garden, a landscape installation that will be on view throughout the 2016 tour season to celebrate the 110th anniversary of Philip...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Join Karen Newman – Inspirational Speaker, Author, World Class Athlete, Mother and Survivor at Pryority, Halo Studio J on Tuesday, May 3rd between 7-8.30pm - where she will tell her...

Cost: $25.00

Where:
Pryority Wellness
45 Grove Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The festival will feature documentary films covering a diversity of subjects- including water and air quality, waste, energy issues and the importance of species preservation.  ...

Cost: free and open to the public

Where:
Sacred Heart University
5151 Park Ave.
Frank & Marisa Martire Business & Communication Center
Fairfield, CT  06825
View map »


Sponsor: Bigelow Tea, Sacred Heart's Film and Television Master's Program, Fairfield Earth Day
Telephone: 203-336-5164
Contact Name: Shawn
Website »

More information

The exhibition Robert Rauschenberg: Spreads and Related Works is a group of paintings and works on paper chosen to compliment the painting Recital (Spread), 1980 which Philip Johnson purchased...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: The Glass House
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

The Glass House is pleased to present Yayoi Kusama: Narcissus Garden, a landscape installation that will be on view throughout the 2016 tour season to celebrate the 110th anniversary of Philip...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

Fairfield County philanthropic organization Near & Far Aid will hold a 2016 Designer House Tour which opens the doors to six exclusive homes decorated by renowned designers in the gold coast...

Cost: $65 in advance/ $75 day of

Where:
Fairfield, Southport, Westport
VARIOUS LOCATIONS - PRIVATE HOMES
, CT
View map »


Sponsor: Near & Far Aid
Telephone: 203-259-1710
Contact Name: Jessica Grutkowski
Website »

More information

The festival will feature documentary films covering a diversity of subjects- including water and air quality, waste, energy issues and the importance of species preservation.  ...

Cost: free and open to the public

Where:
Sacred Heart University
5151 Park Ave.
Frank & Marisa Martire Business & Communication Center
Fairfield, CT  06825
View map »


Sponsor: Bigelow Tea, Sacred Heart's Film and Television Master's Program, Fairfield Earth Day
Telephone: 203-336-5164
Contact Name: Shawn
Website »

More information

The exhibition Robert Rauschenberg: Spreads and Related Works is a group of paintings and works on paper chosen to compliment the painting Recital (Spread), 1980 which Philip Johnson purchased...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: The Glass House
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

The Glass House is pleased to present Yayoi Kusama: Narcissus Garden, a landscape installation that will be on view throughout the 2016 tour season to celebrate the 110th anniversary of Philip...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...

The festival will feature documentary films covering a diversity of subjects- including water and air quality, waste, energy issues and the importance of species preservation.  ...

Cost: free and open to the public

Where:
Sacred Heart University
5151 Park Ave.
Frank & Marisa Martire Business & Communication Center
Fairfield, CT  06825
View map »


Sponsor: Bigelow Tea, Sacred Heart's Film and Television Master's Program, Fairfield Earth Day
Telephone: 203-336-5164
Contact Name: Shawn
Website »

More information

The exhibition Robert Rauschenberg: Spreads and Related Works is a group of paintings and works on paper chosen to compliment the painting Recital (Spread), 1980 which Philip Johnson purchased...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: The Glass House
Website »

More information

Heather Gaudio Fine Art is pleased to announce its upcoming solo exhibition “Jill Moser: Paintings & Prints” to be held April 16-May 28.   An opening reception will be held for...

Cost: Free

Where:
Heather Gaudio Fine Art
66 Elm Street
New Canaan, CT  06840
View map »


Sponsor: Heather Gaudio Fine Art
Telephone: (203)801-9590
Contact Name: Rachael Palacios
Website »

More information

The Glass House is pleased to present Yayoi Kusama: Narcissus Garden, a landscape installation that will be on view throughout the 2016 tour season to celebrate the 110th anniversary of Philip...

Cost: $35 includes tour

Where:
The Glass House
199 Elm Street
New Canaan , CT  06840
View map »


Website »

More information

Show More...
Show Less...
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