'Bram en Sijm en de Bende van Zwarte Dolf' (7 February 1953).

Bert Wunderink was a Dutch journalist, painter, etcher and comic artist. Earning a living with reviewing art events for the Brabants Dagblad, all of his spare time was devoted to drawing and painting. He was also the author of the obscure text comic strip 'Bram en Sijm en de Bende van Zwarte Dolf' (1953).

Early life
Born in Amstersfoort in 1923, Albertus Johannes Hendricus Wunderink was an avid handball player in his younger years. A prominent member of the Amersfoort team, his talents were duly noticed by the local newspaper. Painting and drawing were his other hobbies, but failed to make him a living later in life. In 1951, he came to notice again, when he directed a stage play of G.B. Shaw's 'You Never Can Tell' for the Johan van Oldenbarnevelt Gymnasium. By 1953 he converted to Roman Catholicism in order to marry his girlfriend, who came from a Catholic family. To support his young family, Wunderink turned to journalism, working subsequently in Amersfoort, Tilburg and Eindhoven. He joined the art section of the regional newspaper Brabants Dagblad, where he reviewed plays and expositions.


'Bram en Sijm en de Bende van Zwarte Dolf' (11 February 1953).

Bram en Sijm
He also kept drawing, and provided the newspaper with a comic strip about two journalists, who are confronted with the criminal gang of Zwarte Dolf ("Black Dolf"). 'Bram en Sijm en de Bende van Zwarte Dolf' (1953) was a typical text comic in the Dutch tradition, with each episode consisting of two or three illustrations and extensive captions. Graphically, the strip reminds of other newspaper comic artists of the time, such as Carol Voges, Loek van Delden and Siem Praamsma. The strip ran in several local newspapers, including Het Binnenhof from The Hague.

Painter and etcher
Bert Wunderink's personal drawings and paintings were exhibited on several occasions in small local venues. Later in life, he made humorous etches, which he managed to exhibit in an Amsterdam gallery in the late 1980s. His wife Noortje directed plays for local theater groups and was involved with the Eindhoven cabaret company De Muze-kanten. The marriage remained childless. Bert Wunderink passed away in Eindhoven on 9 August 2003, ten years after his wife. He was 79 years old.


Etch by Bert Wunderink.

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