Quentin Blake: The Life of Birds

The first exhibition uncovering Quentin Blake’s personal drawings of birds.

When, Where

"A rare chance to see a selection of original drawings by Blake and enjoy a tightly-focused exhibition dedicated to one of his most rewarding subjects." Creative Review

"Brilliantly quirky ornithology and a 'kindly but penetrating' commentary on the human condition.” The Telegraph

"An exhibition of pure, quirky joy... Blake is an amused observer who pretends that his art is nothing but nonsense, but whose judgements are both shrewd and tolerant." New York Review of Books

This exhibition is the first ever to examine a theme that has intrigued Quentin Blake throughout his career – birds.

It shows a series of original drawings from his personal archive of birds in everyday situations, revealing a kindly but penetrating commentary on the human condition. The subtleties of the birds’ interactions show Blake’s mastery of conveying emotion through expression and gesture, a hallmark of his illustrations.

I have always liked drawing birds. I can't quite explain why but it may be because like us, they are on two legs and have expressive gestures. It's a way of commenting on the people we see around us without actually drawing individuals.” Quentin Blake

Many of the works on show were published in Blake’s 2005 book The Life of Birds. The exhibition will also show personal drawings created since 2005 alongside illustrations for Figaro Litteraire, the weekly literary supplement to French daily newspaper Le Figaro.