Joe Sacco - The Art of the News: Comics Journalism

Illustration by Audra McNamee

Joe Sacco is credited as the first artist to practice rigorous, investigative journalism using the comics form. Born in Malta, in 1960, Sacco earned his BA in journalism from the University of Oregon in 1981. His groundbreaking work documenting Palestinian life in the Occupied Territories was awarded the American Book Award in 1996 and was compiled in the graphic narrative Palestine (2001). He went on to document the war in Bosnia in The Fixer (2003), War's End (2005), and Safe Area Goražde (2000). His other notable monographs include Footnotes in Gaza (2009), which won a Ridenhour Book Prize, and his most recent book, Paying the Land (2020). Paying the Land investigates resource extraction, the devastation of residential schooling, and the legacy of colonialism among the Dené First Nations communities. Sacco contributes graphic reportage to magazines and newspapers worldwide, including The New York Times Sunday Magazine, The Guardian, Harper's Magazine, and XXI. Many of his shorter works are collected in the anthology Journalism (2012). Sacco is the recipient of numerous awards and accolades, including a 2001 Guggenheim Fellowship, a Time Magazine Best Comic of 2000 award. Residing in Portland, Oregon, Sacco is currently at work on a book about the aftermath of a riot that took place in Uttar Pradesh, among other projects. 

Additional Resources:
The Unwanted, Part 1 by Joe Sacco
The Unwanted, Part 2 by Joe Sacco