I never did a cover for the Misha Defonseca book in the earlier posts, but I did make some models that I intended for it, some have been thrown out. I'd originally painted the Misha head so carefully, so I attacked it with the oil paint. The drawing/painting is childlike, as though Misha had done it herself. The type is pure 70's rock poster, I'm an old hippy!
I found out only today that the Misha Defonseca story was a lie. I really shouldn't be shocked. It's pretty reprehensible considering all of the Holocaust connections. I also discovered the huge profits that had been made from the book, kinda makes me glad I never tried making contact. If only she'd made it a piece of fiction from the start!
The story of Misha Defonseca is a parable for our times and a warning of the dangers we face when we suspend our critical faculties to claims made by people who put on the mantle of victim-hood. The Holocaust, especially when used as a moral touchstone representing human evil (rather than a unique historical account of the terrifying consequences of a dehumanising state policy), seems to attract such testimony. Such fabrications are true revisionism and pose more of a danger to history than the Holocaust deniers such as David Irving.
Bruno Waterfield, The Telegraph, March 2nd 2008
I agree it's the rewriting of history that is most serious, and the effect this has on real testimonies.
When Misha Defonseca admitted that her best-selling memoir about surviving the Holocaust with the help of wolves was a sham, her publisher thought she could avoid paying the author and her ghost writer a disputed $32.5 million for allegedly concealing profits from sales.
Yesterday, after a decade of litigation, a panel of judges in the state Appeals Court ruled that the publisher does not have to pay Defonseca the $22.5 million awarded to her by a jury but still owes $10 million to the ghost writer, who was unaware of the hoax.
David Abel, Globe, Nov 25th 2010
Yuk! While I don't regret illustrating the story, I do like the many others that bought the book, feel manipulated. I look at the numbers and take solace that I wasn't the only sucker, and that she wasn't paid. I won't be as naive in future, and for history stick to Antony Beevor.
On to less sticky stuff, I've started illustrations for Tony Harrison's amazing graveside poem that caused all that commotion over the foul language in the Eighties. Great! I'll be using dip pen and at 35ish pages it will be a while, but heres a start. Sorry it breaks off mid sentence, this is all I'll post of it 'til it's done and I speak to the man.