Punchatz memorial to be held on campus

Editor’s note: This story was revised for accuracy at 6:37 p.m. Nov. 6.

A memorial celebration for Don Punchatz, illustrator and adjunct professor of graphic design who died Oct. 22, will be held Saturday. The celebration will be from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. in the PepsiCo Recital Hall.

The memorial will be open to the public, said Lewis Glaser, associate professor of graphic design. Punchatz’s son, Greg, will speak at the memorial. It will also feature a presentation of Punchatz’s life and work.

Punchatz’s reputation as an illustrator reached beyond the boundaries of the university. The New York Times published an obituary about the professor Monday. The article discussed Punchatz’s influence on a generation of illustrators with his surreal art, which graced popular horror and science-fiction paperbacks as well as “Star Wars” books and art magazines. Punchatz’s political commentary for the cover of the 1974 “Civics” issue of National Lampoon along with his vivid animal illustrations for National Geographic magazine were also noted.

“(Punchatz’s) ability to touch men with acrylic and melt them into beasts, or touch beasts with oil and ink – and: voila! they are senators or brokers – is endlessly stunning,” science fiction icon Ray Bradbury was quoted as saying in The New York Times.