Inktspotprijs 2005
Inktspotprize 2005, dealing with the run-up to the referendum for the European constitution. The cartoon depicts Dutch Prime Minister Jan-Peter Balkenende force-feeding the constitution to the Dutch people, but getting it spewed back in his face.

Joep Bertrams is a Dutch artist who began his career as a children's book illustrator, but is best-known since the late 1980s for his sharp political cartoons. His political cartoons not only appear in his home country, but are syndicated in Germany, France and the United States as well. He is also active as an animator and puppet and background designer for theatre and television. He lives and works in Amsterdam.

Early life and career
Born in 1946 in Roermond, he initially studied to become a teacher, but eventually attended the Academy of Fine Arts in The Hague from 1967 to 1972. He started making drawings for a couple of worker's union magazines during his this period. Upon graduation, he went to work as a teacher in Breda and then Hoofddorp, while making illustrations for children's magazines like Taptoe, Okki and Ezelsoor. He has also made illustrations for (children's) books by Karel Eykman, Veronica Hazelhoff, Imme Dros, Henri van Daele, Wiel Kusters and Ted van Lieshout. He additionally made animated cartoons and designed puppets and backgrounds for theatre productions and TV shows like 'Oren van je Kop' (1990-1991).

Zij Wel by Joep Bertrams
28 February 2007: Dutch Queen Beatrix violates the Turkish ban on headscarfes during her state visit.

Career as political cartoonist
His first work for the Amsterdam newspaper Het Parool were drawings for the children's page Goochem by his friend Paul Arnoldussen in 1982. These drawings illustrated news events. He also provided artwork for thematical series, for instance about Japan. In 1988 he became the paper's political cartoonist, after Peter van Straaten started to focus on his daily life cartoons. He eventually made up to six cartoons a week, which were also syndicated to international publications, such as The Herald Tribune, The New York Times, Newsweek, Le Monde, Süddeutsche Zeitung and Die Zeit. In 2011, he left Het Parool, and started his weekly cartoon for De Groene Amsterdammer and some regional newspapers.

Cartoon depicting local Amsterdam politician Rob Oudkerk's explanation for his 2004 sex scandal

Other activities
Since 2004, he also regularly makes animated cartoons, which have appeared in the Dutch current affairs programme Nova, the website of the TV programme Nieuwsuur and other media. He was furthermore a teacher at the AKI Academy of Art & Design in Enschede until 2005.

26 October 2016: Donald Trump will only accept the election results if he wins.

Joep Bertrams won the Zilveren Penseel ("Silver Brush") for his illustrations in Wiels Kusters' novel 'Salamanders vangen' in 1986 and for his own book 'Johan Edelgans' in 1989. He won the Ton Smits-pin for his entire oeuvre from Cartoonists Association De Tulp in 2001, and the Inktspotprijs for best political cartoon in 2005 with a drawing that illustrated the run-up to the referendum about the European constitution. He received the Inktspotprijs for a second time in 2015 with his cartoon about the terrorist attack on the French satirical weekly Charlie Hebdo in January 2015. Cartoonists Wolinski, Cabu, Charb, Tignous and economist Bernard Maris were killed during the attack.

Exhibitions of his work have been held in the Haus der Niederlande in Münster (2006) and the Press Museum in Amsterdam (2006). A book with DVD called 'Oud Zeer' (2006) was published for the occasion by Jean-Marc van Tol's publishing label Catullus. It collected his work dealing with the post 9/11 period and the three cabinets of prime minister Jan-Peter Balkenende. 'Meer Zeer' (2007) presented a selection of his drawings and animated shorts from 2007. 

Held by Joep Bertrams
Cartoon depicting Dutch Prime Minister Balkenende literally hiding under his desk and pretending national crises are not happening under his term.

Series and books by Joep Bertrams you can order today:


If you want to help us continue and improve our ever- expanding database, we would appreciate your donation through Paypal.