Muhammad az-Zuwawi at Tarhuni was born near Bengasi, Lybia in 1936. He is one of Africa's first cartoonists and illustrators. He began working as a graphic artist in 1961, after leaving his studies for personal reasons. In 1963 az-Zuwawi became editor and cartoonist for the newspaper Magiallat al-ida'a in Tripoli, where he published his first cartoons. Afterward, he worked for many journals and newspapers, publishing regularly in newspaper at-Tawra. He also produced animated cartoons.
He compiled a collection of his work and published it into two books, 'Al-wajh al-ahir' ('The other side of the medal', 1966-1972) and 'Antum!!! Intima 'iyat siyasiyat' ('Cartoons about politics and society', 1973-1996). His cartoons usually present observations on society, culture and Libyan everyday life in a comic way. Az-Zuwawi received many acknowledgments in Lybia and abroad. Muhammad az-Zuwawi at Tarhuni has had his work exhibited in Italy, in the exhibition 'Matite Africane'.
In 1974 he worked as an artist supervisor on the initial setup of the children's magazine Al Amal (The Hope). He designed the main characters in the magazine, which were later drawn by other artists. He also contributed some short stories and covers, as well as two long series. He died on Sunday 5 June 2011 in the Libyan capital Tripoli