Jean Plantureux, or "Plantu," quit his medical studies in 1971 and moved to Brussels to study design at St. Luke’s School, founded by Hergé. In 1972, he returned to Paris and offered his cartoons to several newspapers, finding a job at Le Monde, where he published his first cartoon about the Vietnam war. In 1974, Claude Julien, director of Le Monde Diplomatique, published his cartoons in his newspaper. From 1980 to 1986, Plantu also worked for Phosphore magazine. Since 1991, he has published a a weekly page in L’Express.
In 1995, the layout of Le Monde changes and Plantu is denied the right to pick the subject of his political cartoons. To oppose the newspaper's artistic director following the firing of two cartoonists, Plantu created a mischievous character: the little mouse. In 2002, Plantu met United Nations Secretary-General Kofi Annan in Paris to prepare a gathering of international cartoonists who become the founding brothers and sisters of the Cartooning for Peace organization (2006).
The same year, Plantu releases a book “Je ne dois pas dessiner” in response to the ban uttered by several imams after the publication of Danish cartoons regarding the Arab Prophet Muhammad. Two books follow in 2007 published at Le Seuil: "La Présidentielle 2007" and "Racaille le Rouge." Plantu published "Un boulevard pour Sarko" in 2008. In 2009 came "Bas les masques," "Best of Sarko" and "Almaniak 2010." His latest releases are: "Almaniak 2011" and "Tête de Gondole." In December 2010, Qatar's ambassador in Paris, Mohamed Al Kuwari, awarded 1st prize in the "Doha Arab Cultural Capital" consideration to Plantu. The 10,000 Euro prize was donated to Cartooning for Peace, the organization founded by Annan and Plantu.
For further information go to www.plantu.net and www.cartooningforpeace.org.