Jan Kruis

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Johannes Andries “Jan” Kruis
Jan Kruis 1.jpg
Born (1933-06-08)8 June 1933
Rotterdam, Netherlands
Died 19 January 2017(2017-01-19) (aged 83)
Mantinge, Netherlands
Nationality Dutch
Area(s) Cartoonist, Writer, Artist
Notable works
Jack, Jacky and the Juniors
Awards Order of the Netherlands Lion, 1996

Johannes Andries “Jan” Kruis (Dutch pronunciation: [jɑn krœys]; 8 June 1933 – 19 January 2017) was a Dutch comics artist most well known for the family strip Jack, Jacky and the Juniors (Jan, Jans en de Kinderen).[1]


He began creating comics as a child. Later he worked for the Dutch comics pioneer Marten Toonder.

Kruis started his own comics career drawing Prins Freddie for the magazine De Havenloods,[2] but became famous thanks to his series of one-pagers called Jan, Jans en de Kinderen ("Jack, Jacky and the Juniors"). It first appeared in the woman's magazine Libelle on December 12, 1970. In German-speaking Switzerland it appeared in the magazine Spick which targeted children and teenagers; and in Germany Favorit published it for some time under the name "Ulli, Ulla und die Kinder". He also had a gag comic named Gregor running in Tintin, between 1965 and 1966, which was later reprinted in Pep.[3] Kruis took over Sjors en Sjimmie from Frans Piët in 1969 and modernized the characters, including a less stereotypical depiction of Sjimmie's black features. The series was later taken over by Jan Steeman.[4]

He was furthermore active as an illustrator of novels, magazines, advertisements and record covers.[5]

Kruis received the Order of the Netherlands Lion in 1996.[6] Two years later he retired.[7] Daughter Andrea Kruis has followed in her father's footsteps.

In 2013 his career was celebrated in a one-off glossy-zine; this includes previously unpublished gags of a comic about an infant punk raised by a gay couple; hence the nickname "Jan, Jan en de Kinderen" ("Jack, Jack and the Juniors").

At 20 January 2017 a good friend of the family informed the press about his death one day before. Jan Kruis died in his hometown Mantinge (Drenthe) at the age of 83.[8]

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