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Dan Zettwoch

Dan Zettwoch is a cartoonist, information designer and printmaker in St. Louis. He earned his BFA in visual communications with an emphasis in illustration from Washington University, where he teaches in the Sam Fox School’s MFA in Illustration & Visual Culture program.

In addition to many self-published zines and handcrafted mini-comics, his books include BIRDSEYE BRISTOE (Drawn & Quarterly), AMAZING FACTS & BEYOND (Uncivilized Books), and Science Comics: CARS: ENGINES THAT MOVE YOU (First Second). His goofball illustrations and jam-packed diagrams have also been seen in the Missouri History Museum, the State Capitol Museum, and in homemade screenprints commemorating local birds, baseball, and strange foods.

Personal website

Work by Dan Zettwoch

Installation view of two walls; the one in the middle of the image contains a large-scale illustration of a narrative, with the hand-lettered text "KEEPING the PUMPS RUNNING" — "1875 Water" in the center; what follows are several paragraphs of text interspersed with some larger illustrations. The wall to the right contains an illustration of (what appears to be) a cityscape.

Image from “A Walk in 1875 St. Louis” exhibit, Missouri History Museum, 2015–2016

Illustration of various cars in various colors, as well as the machinery that powers them; the color scheme consists of bright pops of color — vermilion, red, yellow, light gray, teal and slate blue. The title, "CARS" — "Engines That Move You" is in the upper center, set in a cartoon-like, bubbly font.

Cover from “CARS: The Engines That Move You” graphic novel, MacMillan, First/Second, 2019

A book on top of a large grayscale poster: the cover, in yellow — with lighter yellow flames running along the bottom edge — reads, "BEWARE OF BALDKNOBBERS", hand-lettered in a white slab serif font. Below the title is an illustration of a framed portrait of a veiled/masked figure with antler-like protrusions from the sides of their head.

Cover from Redbird #5 “Beware of Baldknobbers” zine, Self-published, 2018

A brochure/poster folded out: the hand lettered title reads, "MUSEUMS OF St. Louis" and frames an intricate illustration of an assortment of various subjects, each a focus of a museum. The drawings are set on a light cream background that's a map, with red pins marking the location of each museum.

Detail from Museums of St. Louis, AAM/Contemporary Art Museums, 2018

An open spread of a graphic novel: the color scheme is a warm cream/yellow-red, and the text reads, "When times got tough for the town — this must've been '89, the height of the catfish kill-off... sloganeering rights were sold to Ol' Tump & his tackle shop just to keep the juices flowing. But later... the powers that be — chambers of commerce, utilities commission, etc. — started worryin' about the ethics of turning our only local landmark into a billboard. But there were concerns about how expensive it would be to re-paint. (not to mention, I grow my own nightcrawlers.) But any-way, after lots of de-bate and suggestions, it was decided to do whatever would be cheapest and require the least amount of paint... [international red], [electric daffodil] ... and would also somehow be "community enriching." But it still ended up looking like an advertisement, only now for the big new church up the road. I guess it's a good message, at least. Even if it still seems fishy to me."

Pages from BIRDSEYE BRISTOE graphic novel, Drawn & Quarterly, 2015