Janosch

Horst Eckert, Janosch, was born on March 11th, 1931 in Hindenburg (Upper Silesia, now the Polish city of Zabrze). He grew up with his grandparents in a mining district. As a young boy, he learned the blacksmith’s trade, and soon after, he started to work at a locksmith’s shop. At the end of World War II, Janosch’s parents took him to West Germany, where he worked in textile factories around Oldenburg; he studied in the School of Textile Engineers of Krefeld, where he learned the craft of stamping from Gerhard Kadow, Klee’s disciple. After spending a season in Paris, he returned to Germany in 1953 and enrolled in the Academy of Fine Arts in Munich, where he had Ernst Geitlinger as teacher, amongst others. After a few trial months, he had to refrain from his studies due to lack of talent.

He began writing for several periodicals in 1956, and on the following years established himself as an independent artist. In 1960, under the guidance of his editor Georg Lentz, he published his first children’s book La historia de Valek, el caballo (The Story of Valek the horse) under the pseudonym Janosch. In 1970 he published his first adult fiction book Cholonek oder Der liebe Gott aus Lehm (Cholonek or the Mud God), which was later followed by a prolific and creative period where he committed to both young and adult audiences.

He currently lives in the island of Tenerife.

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