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Weyni Deysel, 1951-2010
posted May 18, 2010


Weyni Deysel, an award-winning South African cartoonist whose major newspaper client was The Citizen, died after shooting himself in his home in Alberton, a town southeast of Johannesburg. He had just turned 59 years old.

Deysel was born in the eastern cape town of Port Elilzabeth and was trained at Pretoria Art School. He briefly worked as a train driver before coming under the tutelage of Len Lindeque.

Deysel had worked for The Citizen since 2007, and was also known for his work in partnership with the comedian Leon Schuster, providing his CD covers and movie posters. His site indicates a cartoonist working a variety of gigs, from graphic design work for corporations to directly-commissioned cartoons. The article in The Citizen indicates that like many staff editorial cartoonists Deysel was part of the publication's general editorial meetings; he was described by his editor as "a vibrant presence."

Deysel won the 2009 Vodcaom Journalist of the Year Award in the cartoonist division for the Gauteng region. Most of the articles on his passing cite the general sense of humor displayed in his work as well as its generally light-hearted tone. He was a three-time winner of Standard Bank's Cartoonist of the Year honor in the mid-1980s, won the Federasie van Afrikaanse Kultuurverenegings Prize in 1989 and took the ABSA Dolphin Prize in 2001. Among his clients in the publishing world were Die Transvaler, Rapport, Sunday Times and Vaderland.

Weyni Deysel is survived by a mother, two sons and an ex-wife. A gallery of his work can be found here.