Emile Mercier

    Emile Mercier
    Born 10.08.1901 in Noumea, New Caledonia
    Died 17.03.1981 in Sydney
    Who was Australia?s funniest cartoonist?
    And why??
    Born in Noumea he always wanted to be an Artist.
    At that age of 11 he drew a green hill covered with
    doves on a large sheet of paper.
    His Father, Noumea?s top baker, wrote under the
    drawing “Emile is wasting a lot of good paper!”
    Emile spent some time in Sydney and
    attended Darlinghurst Public School. He
    returned to Noumea to serve with the French
    Colonial Army and then came back to
    Sydney in 1923 for good. He found a
    run-down room in Paddington overlooking a
    back yard and alley that was filled with
    scungy cats and dogs and overflowing
    rubbish bins (the future scene of many of his
    He took a clerical job doing translations
    and by night attended the famous Julian
    Ashton Art School where Ashton told him
    “You?ll never be an Artist … just a cartoonist!”
    So young Emile swallowed his pride
    and sent off a cartoon to Smiths? Weekly
    (1923) and bingo, got it published.
    He did many jobs from seaman to spruiker at the Sydney Royal Easter Show. His cartoons started to appear in many magazines i.e. Aussie, Melbourne Punch, Bulletin, Sydney Truth, Mustard Pot (a girlie magazine), Becketts Budget, Man, A.B.C. Weekly and the Newspaper – The Daily Mirror.

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