11 February 2013

Quentin Blake: Drawn by Hand (12 Feb - 12 May 2013) looks at individual works Quentin has produced in the past few years: book illustrations, etchings, lithographs, drawings and works done for hospitals in various and contrasting media.

The seventeen works in the exhibition include an original in watercolour pastel from the sequence The Life of Birds,  donated to the Fitzwilliam by Alice Fleet;  as well as originals, drawn in reed-pen and watercolour, from two series of pictures of mothers and their babies swimming underwater which decorate the maternity unit of Angers Hospital and the Rosie Birth Centre at Addenbrooke's Hospital in Cambridge.  They are joined by works from recent books such as 'Candide' for the Folio Society, and 'The Boy in the Dress' by David Walliams.

Artwork is accompanied by a display of pens, brochures, inks, watercolours, etching plates and other materials from the artist’s studio.

Quentin Blake comments: "Over the past few years I have produced, in addition to book illustration, a large number of works to appear in museums, hospitals and other public spaces; a sort of odyssey on the drawing-board which I recount in the book Beyond the Page.  I was delighted to think that an exhibition at the Fitzwilliam gave me the opportunity to allow the spectators to see a diversity of these works and their techniques at close quarters."

You can hear Quentin talking about the exhibition in this podcast by the Fitwilliam Museum.

Exhibition catalogues, giving Quentin Blake's own explanations of the techniques on show, are available from the Museum shop, price £7.99