My list

Charles Addams, Almada Negreiros, Mauricio Amster, Apa, Sergio Aragonés, Gerd Arntz, Eduardo Arroyo, Atak, Bagaría, Arturo Ballester, Rafael Barradas, Salvador Bartolozzi, Glen Baxter, Aubrey Beardsley, Max Beckmann, Peter Blake, Blanquet, R.O. Blechman, Bon, Pierre Bonnard, J. Borges, Mário Botas, Alberto Breccia, Pieter Brueghel, Wilhelm Busch, Jacques Callot, Josef Capek, Al Capp, Caran d'Ache, Jacques Carelman, Castelao, Cesc, Guillem Cifré, Sue Coe, Miguel Covarrubias, Shinta Cho, Chumy Chúmez, Seymour Chwast, Nicole Claveloux, Paul Cox, George Cruikshank, Robert Crumb, Honoré Daumier, Jack Davis, Kim Deitch, Fortunato Depero, Otto Dix, Gustave Doré, Henrik Drescher, Mort Drucker, Albrecht Dürer, Sophie Dutertre, Heinz Edelmann, Will Eisner, Fam Ekman, Mohieddin Ellabbad, El Cubri, Bill Elder, El Roto, Klaus Ensikat, James Ensor, Wolf Erlbruch, Max Ernst, Sara Fanelli, Lyonel Feininger, Flaxman, Jim Flora, Jean-Michel Folon, André François, Fred Fresno, Shigeo Fukuda, Daniel Gil, James Gillray, Gin, Ricard Giralt Miracle, Milton Glaser, Lorenzo Goñi, Edward Gorey, Marcel Gotlib, Francisco Goya, Grandville, George Grosz, Olaf Gulbransson, Matti Hagelberg, George Hardie, George Heartfield, Enrique Herreros, George Herriman, Hiroshige, Al Hirschfeld, William Hogarth, Hokusai, Brad Holland, Jacovitti, Benoît Jacques, Al Jaffee, Janosch, Ana Juan, K-Hito, Toshiya Kobayashi, Václav Kabát, Paul Klee, Heinrich Kley, Max Klinger, Fernando Krahn, Alfred Kubin, Frantisek Kupka, Harvey Kurtzman, Josef Lada, Diego Lara, Edward Lear, Vladimir Lebedev, Suzy Lee, Fernand Léger, Loredano, Winsor McCay, Javier Mariscal, Don Martin, Frans Masereel, Francisco Meléndez, Leopoldo Méndez, Ever Meulen, Alois Mikulka, Mingote, Victor Moscoso, Bruno Munari, José Muñoz, Eduardo Muñoz Bachs, Peter Newell, Carlos Nine, Xavier Nogués, Jockum Nordström, Opisso, Oski, Kveta Pacovská, Gary Panter, Jules Pascin, Rafael de Penagos, Tullio Pericoli, Volker Pfüller, José Guadalupe Posada, Hugo Pratt, Manuel Prieto, Miguel Prieto, Abel Quezada, Quino, Raúl, Paula Rego, Reiser, Josep Renau, Serafín Rojo, Vicente Rojo, Felicien Rops, Hermenegildo Sábat, Miroslav Sasek, Jirí Salamoun, Savignac, Gerald Scarfe, Ronald Searle, Segar, Sempé, Javier Serrano, Ben Shahn, Ismael Smith, Janusz Stanny, Ralph Steadman, William Steig, Saul Steinberg, Art Spiegelman, Joost Swarte, Franciszka Themerson, Hans Ticha, Henrik Tomaszewski, Tono, Rodolphe Töpffer, Roland Topor, Joaquín Torres-García, Isabelle Vandenabeele, Manuel Vázquez, Henning Wagenbreth, Hendrik Nicolaas Werkman, Willem, Xaudaró, Zapata, Ottfried Zielke.

Who are all these people?

Their work, like that of writers, is found in books. Their names occupy a place in the reader’s library I began as a child, which contains volumes that belonged to my father and grandfather. How should we refer to them? We do not know whether they would prefer to be called illustrators, drawers, engravers, graphic artists, designers, layout designers, artwork artists, typographers, photomontage artists, collagists, poster artists, cartoonists, caricaturists, graphic humorists, or visual storytellers, because those who are responsible for the printed images and the visual aspect of books have varied interests and practice a multiplicity of crafts. Some names are more familiar because they escaped from the margins of books and were welcomed by the art market; they became famous figures, or as we call them now, prestigious artists. The rest continue to live in those chests that are often books, waiting for someone to free them from the spell which has condemned them to remain locked up and isolated for years.

What do we know of these authors today? Where are these books located? What happened to their readers?

Knowing the works and recognising their names cannot only be a question of information and general or book culture, it is something much more important. These (and many other) book-makers should also be our mentors, as are the admired writers who were their contemporaries. It appears we do not pay them much attention, to such an extent that we have allowed many of them to remain ignored even today. However, studying the images produced by the masters of their craft should be how we educate the taste of readers, particularly the youngest, and the best and only possible way to provide those who aspire to become illustration and art professionals with a graphic vocabulary which, beyond technical and stylistic resources, ends up forming an authentic language.

I copy these names here only for the pleasure of seeing them together, and also to verify to what extent they are remembered or have been forgotten by readers; and, naturally, to leave friends and those curious a testimony of my preferences.

Vicente Ferrer

Article published in the book Palabras por la lectura (Words for Reading), organised by Javier Pérez Iglesias and published in 2007 by the Consejería de Cultura de la Junta de Castilla-La Mancha. Illustration by William Hogarth: Characters and Caricatures (1743).