The original, hand-drawn works were discovered by accident in EM’s editorial offices during a move. Editorial staff member and illustrator Esther Dijkstra found them in an old moving box: “This box was full of original illustrations and cartoons published in Quod Novum over more than 25 years. Back when illustrators still dropped by the editorial office in person to hand in a paper copy.”

Wonderful idea

University art adviser Anne Clement, who also selected works for the exhibition, was immediately excited when she heard of the discovery. Clement: “The cartoons are of extremely high quality and give you a wonderful idea of what the university was like in those days.”

The exhibited works have been arranged according to theme. For example, one wall is filled with political cartoons – ministers who launched some austerity plan or other were a particularly popular target. Artist Luuk Bode made two murals especially for the exhibition that pay homage to Quod Novum and the unique atmosphere of its smoke-filled offices.

The exhibition will be officially opened on Thursday, 19 September at 4 p.m. at the Erasmus Gallery, which can be found between Theil Hall and the Auditorium. This is also when Illustratum – a one-off EM publication devoted to cartoons and illustrations then and now – will become available for purchase.