23. ilb 06. – 16.09.2023
Portrait Leopold Maurer
© Hartwig Klappert

Leopold Maurer

Leopold Maurer, born in 1969 in Vienna, first studied sociology at the Universität Wien, then painting and graphic design at the Akademie der bildenden Künste in Vienna. Since 1998, he has worked as a freelance artist in the areas of animation, cartoons, comics, and illustration.
After publishing in anthologies, he débuted in 2009 with his graphic novel »Miller & Pynchon« about two land surveyors who are meant to draw a demarcation line from north to south. The introverted Pynchon, who can’t get over the death of his wife, and the hedonistic Miller, who enjoys losing himself in sexual escapades, find existential grounding in the abstract numbers they are obliged to work with. When they finally interrupt their original task to instead measure the path of Venus in order to calculate the distance of the Earth to the sun, they not only reach their own limits, but are also confronted with sewer crocodiles and all kinds of surreal nonsense. In »Mann am Mars« (2011; tr: Man on Mars) Maurer draws a sequential comic strip to portray an astronaut’s mission to Mars in which the astronaut is tasked with analyzing the rocks on Mars with the help of a turtle named Darwin while simultaneously operating a gas station for his sponsor. In the hilarious and at the same time deeply depressing book with an absurd and sometimes dark sense of humor, the protagonist experiences adventures and meets bizarre characters on her journey through outer space. In his political, anti-utopian graphic novel »Kanal« (2014; tr: Channel), Maurer exposes the absurdities of a political system in which a cigarette- and alcohol-addicted chancellor has an absurd plan to use a canal to bring the sea inland and thus secure power. For this purpose, she must convince her incapacitated people and the media to support her project. Here, Maurer works with stark but refined black-and-white drawings to mirror the disaffection of modern society. »In ›Kanal‹, Maurer manages to condense overarching connections of a few characters into smaller episodes and sell the result as comedy« (»Der Tagesspiegel«). Based on Vera Sturm and Claus Peymann’s edited translation of August Wilhelm Schlegel, Maurer adapted Shakespeare’s play »The Tempest« for the 2016 Shakespeare anniversary. Above all, his graphic novel’s adaptation of the story into the world of modern multimedia helped to make the content accessible to younger generations.
In addition to his graphic novels, Maurer also designed the animation films »boring« (2008), »Speculating/Moneymals« (2015), and »Happiness« (2015), among others. He lives and works in Vienna and Lower Austria.


Miller & Pynchon
Wien, 2009
Mann am Mars
Wien, 2011
Wien, 2014
Der Sturm
Wien, 2016