About This Exhibition

Thomas Nast defined the art of the political cartoon.

During his 26-year career at the popular New York journal Harper’s Weekly, Nast created more than 3,000 cartoons. Many of his creations–including the Democratic Donkey and the Republican Elephant–are still in use today.

Just in time for election season, this collection of cartoons drawn entirely from WAM’s holdings explores the artist’s use of animals to parody 19th-century political culture.

A powerful figure in his own day, today Nast is recognized as one of the most important cartoonists and political commentators of all time.

Black and white cartoon with caricatures of a Lion, donkey, bulldog and others sitting and standing in a body of water with waves.

Thomas Nast, Our Modern Canute at Long Branch, dated October 11, 1873. Wood engraving, 14 1/2 x 21 inches. Purchased with funds donated by the Derby Refining Company, a Unit of Coastal States Gas Corporation