Filip Cardoen is a Flemish comic artist, painter and graphic designer. He is most famous for his mural paintings and caricatures of cyclists and World War I-themed personalities. As a comic artist he drew 'Pinkje de Pinguin' for De Krant van West-Vlaanderen.

Early life
He was born in 1955 in Dadizele as the son of a cattle salesman and a grocery store owner. His parents moved to a farm in Slypskapelle when he was six years old. At a young age Cardoen already drew birthday cards for his father's cows. He was expected to follow in their footsteps, but instead he studied at the art academy of Menen and later at Saint-Luc in Ramegnies-Chin, not far from Tournai (Doornik). His father insisted that he went to a French-language school.

After graduation, Cardoen worked for the Roularta publishing group. For Roularta's regional weekly Krant van West-Vlaanderen, he drew the comic strip 'Pinkje de Pinguïn' for about 25 years. Created and written by Stef Desodt, the penguin Pinkje and his good friend, the teddybear Beertje Knuffel, were the mascots of the children's section, called De Pinkjeskrant. Besides a comic strip, Pinkje answered the readers' mail and spearheaded the editorial items. Annual 'Pinkje' festivities were held in the former Dadipark in Dadizele, while children could become members of the Pinkje Club. He also inspired a novelty song called 'Pinkje, De Kindervriend' by Bingo En De Pinkjes, written by Fonny De Wulf. Roularta published a couple of 'Pinkje' books, sponsored by the Bank van Roeselare. A big fan of the character, comic artist Davy Demol revived the character on its own Facebook page between 2018 and 2020.

In 1994 Cardoen became a freelance artist, especially known as a painter of shop windows and caricaturist. He once made several caricatures of the cast members of the popular TV sitcom 'FC De Kampioenen' for an exhibition in Lichtervelde. When the actors themselves visited the exhibition, it provided him with more media exposure. During the annual Tour of Flanders cycling contest, Lichtervelde was named "Village of the Tour". Cardoen was asked to design huge caricatures of famous Flemish cyclists, which were placed on cardboards to be shown during the cycling event. This soon became an annual tradition. The cyclists' portraits can still be seen on the side of the road in several West Flemish villages and particular appear in view whenever the Tour de France or the Tour of Flanders is broadcast live on television. In 2017 and 2019 some of these paintings were stolen. While cycling is his biggest passion Cardoen also made portraits of the Belgian national association football team The Red Devils at the occasion of the 2014 World Championship Football and the 2016 European Championship.

Mural paintings
Cardoen is also well known for his mural paintings, among others near the fire brigade in the Albert l-laan in Roeselare and kindergarten De Linde in Hooglede. In 2017 he designed a mural in Moorslede, near bar De Vier Kaven, which depicts World War I fighter pilot Frank Slee and German military aviator Hermann Göring. The wall was praised by Slee's son, John, who said: "This is a great compliment to my dad. We were all chuffed when we heard about this." Slee was also invited at the inauguration, but received the invitation too late. On 12 November 2017 Cardoen created a special mural painting to support Kloen, the CliniClowns organisation. A giant wall at the local Kerkplein in Roeselare depicts an entire comic strip starring Kloentje, the mascot of the organisation. The story was written by Geert Deraeve.

Books about Filip Cardoen
Because of his official retirement, Cardoen published a biography, '(H)ART Works - Filip Cardoen 50 jaar Verfkwastvirtuoos' (2018). Written by Peter Devlieger, the book features more than 1000 of his cartoons. All profits go to Kloen, the CliniClowns organisation.

Selection of caricatures, published in '(H)ART Works'.

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