Leanne Shapton

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Leanne Shapton
Born25 June 1973
Mississauga, Ontario, Canada[1]

Leanne Shapton is a Canadian artist and graphic novelist, now living in New York City. Her second work, Important Artifacts and Personal Property From the Collection of Lenore Doolan and Harold Morris, Including Books, Street Fashion and Jewelry, has been optioned for a film slated to star Brad Pitt and Natalie Portman.[2] The novel, which takes the form of an auction catalog, uses photographs and accompanying captions to chronicle the romance and subsequent breakup of a couple via the relationship's significant possessions or "artifacts".

Shapton's first work, Was She Pretty?, was a nominee for the Doug Wright Award, a Canadian award for comics and graphic novels, in 2007. It explored, via a series of line-drawn illustrations, the issues of relationship jealousy and insecurity as told through the imagined superior traits of the subjects' exes.

Shapton is also an art director for newspapers and magazines.[3] Formerly associated with Saturday Night, Maclean's and the National Post in Canada, she has worked as art director for the op-ed page at The New York Times.[2] She has created hand lettering for a number of book covers, including Chuck Palahniuk's 2003 novel Diary. She is also a partner in J&L Books.[4]

Her autobiographical book Swimming Studies (2012) deals with her youth as a national competitive swimmer, who made it as far as the 1988 and 1992 Canadian Olympic trials. It is a "meditation on the gruelling years of training, the ways swimming is refracted through her memory now".[5] It won the National Book Critics Circle Award (Autobiography).[6][7]

Shapton created the "armpit sex drawing" for Spike Jonze's 2013 film Her.


  1. ^ Houpt, Simon (24 March 2009). "Canadian 'still reeling' about Brad Pitt deal". The Globe and Mail. Toronto ON. p. R1.
  2. ^ a b Houpt, Simon (March 24, 2009). "Canadian 'still reeling' about Brad Pitt deal". The Globe and Mail. Retrieved March 24, 2009.
  3. ^ Akbar, Arifa (22 December 2009). "A first-timer's tale of unheralded literary success". The Independent. Retrieved 22 December 2009.
  4. ^ "Profile Leanne Shapton". Macmillan. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  5. ^ Carolyn Kormann (August 16, 2012). "Notes from Underwater Review of Swimming Studies". The New Yorker. Retrieved November 20, 2012.
  6. ^ John Williams (January 14, 2012). "National Book Critics Circle Names 2012 Award Finalists". New York Times. Retrieved January 15, 2013.
  7. ^ John Williams (March 1, 2013). "Robert A. Caro, Ben Fountain Among National Book Critics Circle Winners". New York Times. Retrieved March 1, 2013.

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