Quentin Blake: Illustrating Verse
At: The Dick Institute, Elmbank Avenue, Kilmarnock KA1 3BU
10 September 2022 - 7 January 2023
Quentin Blake has been illustrating poetry throughout the whole of his career, creating illustrations for such varied poets as Roald Dahl and William Shakespeare. The first ever exhibition dedicated to Quentin's illustrations for poetry, Quentin Blake: Illustrating Verse is touring the UK until 2024.
The exhibition brings together a selection of more than 120 of Quentin's illustrations for poetry of all kinds, from comic nonsense to poignant ballads. It celebrates his illustrations for popular nursery rhymes and children's favourites like The Owl and the Pussycat and Jabberwocky. Work for more 'serious' poets such Sylvia Plath, whose poem for children 'The Bed Book' was illustrated by Quentin in 1984, also makes a rare appearance.
Quentin says, “The choice of moments, and a sense of discretion about what to draw and what not to draw, is particularly important in the business of illustrating poetry.”
The show includes roughs and preliminary sketches alongside the finished artworks for both modern and classical writers, from Edward Lear and Lewis Carroll, to Michael Rosen and John Yeoman, as well as illustrations for Quentin's own popular verses Mr Magnolia and All Join In.
East Ayrshire Leisure is celebrating Quentin Blake’s 90th birthday this year with a double venue exhibition programme at both the Dick Institute (showing 'Illustrating Verse') and the Baird Institute ('Book Covers') alongside an extensive primary school creative learning programme of visits and illustration workshops.
Quentin Blake: Illustrating Verse is a a touring exhibition from Quentin Blake Centre for Illustration. For more information about the Quentin Blake Centre, visit https://www.qbcentre.org.uk/