from Charlie Hebdo, by Reiser

Jean-Marc Reiser was one of the foremost French humorists of the 1960s and 1970s, infamous for the controversial cartoons and comics he made for magazines like Hara-Kiri, Charlie Hebdo and L'Écho des Savanes. Born Jean-Marc Roussillon in Réhon, Meurthe-et-Moselle, Reiser published his first cartoons in La Gazette de Nectar, the company magazine of the Nicolas winery, in 1959. Shortly afterwards, he made illustrations for Blagues, Cordée and Le Baladin de Paris, which he signed with Jiem.

In 1960, he participated in the launch of Hara-Kiri magazine, together with Georges Bernier, François Cavanna and Fred. Reiser's biting humor and typical drawing style proved perfect for this underground monthly, as well as its weekly counterpart, Hara-Kiri Hebdo (1969). In addition, he contributed to other adult oriented comic magazines of the time, like Charlie Hebdo, Charlie Mensuel, La Gueule Ouverte and B.D.

from Charlie Hebdo, by Reiser (1980)

Throughout the 1960s, Reiser also drew for the big press, providing work to magazines like Arts, Noir et Blanc, La Vie du Rail, Week-End, Paris-Match, Le Journal du Dimanche and Elle. When Hara-Kiri was prohibited for a second time in 1966, Reiser created the sole issue of his own comic Am Stram Gram for Editions Du Square. He then joined Pilote magazine, where his artwork was judged too different by chief editor René Goscinny. So Reiser turned to writing, cooperating with artists like Ramon Monzon, Nikita Mandryka, Bob de Groot, Jean-Claude Mézières, Mic Delinx, Henri Dufranne, Cabu, Gotlib, Jean Chakir, Roger Bussemey, Patrice Ricord, Claude Poppé, Jean Pouzet and Alexis. Due to conflicts between Dargaud and Editions Du Square, the publisher of Hara-Kiri, Reiser left Pilote in 1972.

comic art by Jean-Marc Reiser

For Tintin, Reiser scripted several gag pages drawn by Dubouillon. In 1968, he made a remarkable appearance in the anarchist magazines Enragé and Action. By 1970, when Hara Kiri Hebdo was also forbidden, Reiser began a collaboration with the magazines Le Monde Libertaire, Actuel and Le Monde. When Charlie Hebdo disappeared in 1981, he was brought to Le Nouvel Observateur by Delfeil de Ton. He also joined L'Écho des Savanes, where he created 'Les Sales Blagues' with Coluche, a series he continued until his death in 1983, after which it was continued by Vuillemin. Reiser's work has been collected in several albums by publishers like Editions du Square and Albin Michel since 1966, including including 'Ils Sont Moches', 'La Famille Oboulot aux Vacances', 'Les Oreilles Rouges', 'La Vie au Grand Air' and 'Vive les Femmes'.

He also appeared in Benoît Lamy's documentary 'Cartoon Circus' (1972), a Belgian documentary about cartoons and comics,  in which he was interviewed alongside Siné, Picha, Roland Topor, Cabu, François Cavanna, Professeur Choron, Gal, Georges Wolinski, Willem, Joke and Jules Feiffer

Reiser was one of several artists to make a graphic contribution to ‘Pepperland’ (1980), a collective comic book tribute to the store Pepperland, to celebrate its 10th anniversary at the time. He was one of several artists to make a graphic contribution to 'Baston Labaffe no. 5: La Ballade des Baffes’ (Goupil, 1983), an official collective parody comic of  André Franquin’s 'Gaston Lagaffe’. 

Jean-Marc Reiser's jolly, loose and controversial comics were a strong influence on several cartoonists. In France he inspired Baru, Cyril Knittel and Philippe Vuillemin. In Germany Walter Moers, in Denmark Kim Fupz Aakeson, while in Spain Eduard Bosch and Oscar Nebreda Abadía are direct followers. In The Netherlands followers can be spotted in the work of Marc de BoerHein de Kort, Gummbah and Eric Schreurs. In Belgium he influenced Wally Van Looy, Kamagurka, Pirana, Erik Meynen, Marec, Jean-Louis Lejeune and Marc Verhaegen . In Gabon he was an inspiration for Pahé. A notable celebrity fan of Reiser's work is Belgian TV host and singer Bart Kaëll. 

comic art by Jean-Marc Reiser

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