An exhibition of the work of the great Quentin Blake launches at the end of January — and it's free to visit.
Blake — best known for illustrating the books of Roald Dahl — has worked on a staggering 500 books in his auspicious career, aimed at both children and adults. The new exhibition, Quentin Blake: Now, will focus on works the artist has rattled off in the last 12 months, and will mainly appeal to more mature audiences (although that's not to say art-appreciating kids won't enjoy it too).
Among the images — many of which are created with Blake's trademark 'scratchy pen and bottle of ink' — are those featuring figures perched on scaffolding floating in ethereal clouds; bearded men driving wacky-looking contraptions across craggy landscapes below sombre skies; and candid headshot portraits which you might not usually associate with the artist.
As the first commercial exhibition of Blake's work in decades, Quentin Blake: Now will be selling original artworks. Given Blake's unwaning popularity, it's safe to say this might be pricey. It won't, however, cost you a thing to enjoy the exhibition, which takes place at NOW in Cromwell Place from 31 January-18 February 2024. You can book a free slot, although it's not compulsory to do so.
Meanwhile, Blake fans have something even bigger to look forward. The Quentin Blake Centre for Illustration, a new visitor centre to showcase the art of illustration, will open in Clerkenwell in 2025 in old waterworks buildings.
Quentin Blake: Now, Cromwell Place, South Kensington, 31 January-18 February 2024, free
All images © Quentin Blake