Famous Romanians: Stefan Popa, the fastest cartoonist in the world
Stefan Popa is a Romanian cartoonist, famous worldwide for his rapidity to draw cartoons with humor, great sharp ideas and a suggestive force. He holds a Guinness World Record for being the fastest drawer in the world. He's also known to the public as Stefan Popa Popa's.
By Alexandra Fodor
Stefan Popa was born in 1955 in Caransebes, Romania. He graduated the Polytechnic Institute in Timisoara, Romania and the Academy of Visual Arts in Poitiers, France. At the age of 14 he published his first cartoon and he started to participate in national and international salons. In 1990, he published the first satirical graphic art album.
In 1995, he broke the world record for resistance, for drawing 1527 portraits in color, during 10 days and 10 nights at the International Festival of Cartoon from Saint-Esteve, France. At the same festival he succeeded to break the world record for speed, making 131 cartoons in one hour, therefore the Guinness Book of World Records declared him the fastest cartoonist in the world.
His amazing achievements earned him nicknames like “The King of Cartoon”, “The bomber in the field”, “The Romanian Daumier of the 20th century”, “Stahanov of the cartoon”.
All his cartoons have been praised and have been awarded many prizes such as The First Prize from Japan (1980), Huriviet Vafki (Istanbul, Turkey 1983), The Medal of The Fine Art’s Academy from Moscow (1987), The Medal of the Cartoon’s Museum from Warsaw (1987), La Marianne (Sainte-Esteve, France 1990), The Best of the World for portrait, China (2002), The First Prize to Roumasier-Loubert (2003), The “Golden Smile” (Belgrade, Serbia 2006).
He worked alongside great artists and cartoonists like Salvador Dali, Jerry Robinson (Superman’s and Batman’s author), Vasquez De Sola, Plantu, Emerson, La Palma, Tim, Morchoisne and many others. He published in major newspapers and magazines all over the world such as Damage, La Nouvelle Republique, Liberation, L’Humanite in France, Daily World in US, Magyar Hirlap in Hungary, Yomiuri Simbun in Japan, L’Afrique in Congo, Krokodil in Russia, Carioca in Brazil or Bargladet in Denmark.
Stefan Popa is a member of the Foundation for Science and Arts of the Cita Academy in Rome and of the Association of Plastic Artists (UNESCO). He founded Popa’s Academy, the first cartoon school in Romania
In 1998, he was the official cartoonist at the Atlanta Summer Olympics and at the FIFA World Cup and in 2006 at the 37th Chess Olympiad from Turin. In 2010, he signed a contract with the Cartoonists’ and Writers’ Trade Union in US.
Read more about Stefan Popa on his website.