THE ILLUSTRATORS 2010

The British Art of Illustration 1870-2010

Chris Beetles has championed the innovative world of illustration for the last thirty-five years, producing outstanding annual exhibitions and museum quality catalogues which have stimulated this formerly overlooked area of collectable art.

This extraordinary exhibition covers the remarkable history of British illustration, from the witty sketchbook observations of Charles Doyle, through centuries of commissions for Punch magazine to Quentin Blake's distinctive illustrations for Roald Dahl's The BFG.

Many of the artists included in this show are household names, and a particular highlight are two delightful Beatrix Potter sketches of Jeremy Fisher and Tom Kitten, characters from the tales which defined Potter's career as an illustrator.
E H Shepard's Winnie the Pooh makes a star appearance in a sketch entitled Pooh and Piglet meet Mr Punch'. Another key feature of the show is Shepard's pen and ink drawing depicting the moment when Ratty and Mole call on Badger' in Kenneth Grahame's delightful The Wind in the Willows (1931).

Works from the innovative 1890s illustrator Aubrey Beardsley constitute an exciting addition. They illustrate the 1893-94 edition of Thomas Malory's Le Morte Darthur and demonstrate Beardsley's liberation from his Victorian artistic peers.

We celebrate the most popular living cartoonist Ronald Searle with a range of artistic genius from his formidable career. Over forty of Searle's works will be on display in the gallery, including his delightful contributions to the advertisements for Lemon Hart Rum, work for Punch and The New Yorker magazines, as well as his more recent humorous studies of cats.

This unique exhibition has the best of contemporary artists such as Quentin Blake, Paul Cox, Emma Chichester Clark, Oliver Jeffers and Nick Butterworth, creator of Percy the Park-keeper'. Also featured in the exhibition are the lively watercolours of Michael Foreman, including illustrations for Michael Morpurgo's Not Bad for a Bad Lad (2010) and Robert Louis Stevenson's Treasure Island (2009).

To satisfy more humorous tastes, there is The Times's renowned political cartoonist Peter Brookes and pocket cartoonist Matt, whose drawings have enriched the pages of the Daily Telegraph since 1988.

Accompanying the exhibition is a detailed 288 page catalogue with over 500 full colour images and accompanying essays, giving you a true flavour of the show and the artists featured. This beautiful catalogue is available from the gallery at just £20 + p&p (£4 UK, £7 Europe, £14 World).