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Larry (Terence Parkes) (1927-2003)


Terry Parkes (1927-2003), known as 'Larry'

Larry was the cartoonist’s cartoonist, highly respected by his peers for his consistently funny work, and cherished by them for his affability. In the autobiographical
Larry on Larry (1994), he wrote, ‘I seem to have the reputation for a being a beer-swigging Brummie cartoonist’, and while each particular of that statement may have been true to the letter, its overall spirit suggests an essential modesty. He even expressed some reservations about the increasing seriousness with which cartooning was being taken, and yet was steeped in the history of his profession and, more widely, in the history of art. This combination of the easygoing and the erudite informed much of his work, in content and draughtsmanship, and he will long be remembered for both his frequent depiction of an Everyman figure, ‘Larry’s man’, and his parodies of famous works of art.

Larry was born Terence Parkes on 19 November 1927 in Handsworth, Birmingham, the only child of Walter Thomas Parkes, a car-factory welder, and his wife Alice. Educated at his local school, Handsworth Grammar, he was evacuated along with his classmates to Stroud, Gloucestershire at the outbreak of the Second World War, but returned to Birmingham shortly after the fall of France.

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