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Adolf Born


Adolf Born is one of our best known artists, caricaturists, famous for his drawings and illustrations, graphic works, film animators and scenographies. He was born in 1930 in České Velenice. He studied art education at the Pedagogical Faculty of Charles University in Prague 1949-1950. He enrolled the art of caricatures and illustrations tutored by Antonín Pelc with whom he then transferred to the Academy of Fine Arts, where he graduated in 1955. Born is the author of unique humorous drawings which bear his indelible mark. He has published his caricatures in the satirical Dikobraz magazine, Lidové noviny newspapers and other magazines (Mladý svět, Květy), as well as in children’s magazines (Sluníčko and Mateřídouška). In Montreal he was declared the best caricaturist in 1974. He has devised a whole series of black humorous drawings called Bornography examining the relationship between men and women from the end of the fifties until the seventies. Born drew inspiration for his graphic works from the impressions he gained from travelling, from an admiration for historic and literary characters, mythological heroes, from drama or from memories of Prague fairs in days of yore. Initially he devoted his talent to woodcuts and black-and-white or coloured linocuts, in the sixties he began to create coloured lithography. Born’s book illustrations bear a close affinity to his graphic works. He has illustrated some 230 books and countess book dust covers. For example his illustrations enhance the most popular books by Czech authors, for instance Mach and Šebestová (Miloš Macourek), Bouquet (Karel Jaromír Erben), The Apple is to Blame (Miroslav Horníček), War with the Newts (Karel Čapek) and How I Met Fish (Ota Pavel) and many more. As for foreign authors published in translation mention must be made of Robinson Crusoe (Daniel Defoe) The Man with the Pipe and Violin (Arthur Conan Doyle) and Pipi Long Socks (Astrid Lindgren). As for films Born has chiefly made his mark with the animated cartoons of the stories of Mach and Šebestová; the first story about these two school children and the magic telephone receiver dates from 1976. Ten years later he produced the series about a monkey called Sophia and Company. Furthermore he shared in the production of the cartoon films Robinson Crusoe, a sailor from York 1981 and a number of others.
Adolf Born died on 22 May 2016 in Prague.