The Written Image: The Odyssey

Celebrated illustrator and graphic designer Seymour Chwast, whose previous graphic novels have included adaptations of The Divine Comedy (Bloomsbury, 2010) and The Canterbury Tales (Bloomsbury, 2011), has turned his illustrative attentions toward Homer’s The Odyssey, to be released by Bloomsbury on September 4.

Chwast’s graphic reimagining of the classic Greek epic features simple but expressive two-color line drawings, pared-down but engaging narration, and, perhaps most notably, an Odysseus who travels by spaceship. Chwast, who cofounded the New York City–based design and illustration firm Push Pin Studios, has illustrated over thirty children’s books, and his artwork has appeared in the New Yorker, Time, and a variety of other publications. He also cofounded the Push Pin Graphic, a bimonthly magazine of art and literature, which has been published by Push Pin Studios since 1955. The above image from Chwast’s The Odyssey depicts the ever-vengeful Poseidon crafting his infamous storm at sea, in an attempt to thwart Odysseus’s journey. To see more of Chwast’s work, visit