Illustration - Autumn 2023 - Issue 77


Illustration Issue 77

Welcome to Illustration 77  - Simon Cooke

News and Reviews
A round-up of interesting new exhibitions, issues and events, with short reviews of some beautiful illustrated books.

Kady MacDonald Denton
More famous on the other side of the pond than in Britain, Denton is an exquisite illustrator for children whose wide-ranging work is lyrical and frequently amusing. Warren Clements provides an insightful and entertaining essay based on a detailed interview with the artist.

The Illustrator’s Interview
Sally Dunne
is an illustrator of literary themes and characters, interpreting writers as diverse as Agatha Christie and Georgette Heyer. Sally reveals her approach to illustration in a stimulating interview.

Carll Cneut 
Wilfried Onzea
introduces the English-speaking audience to the world of this intriguing Belgian artist. Cneut is a master of space, light, colour and humour – and is occasionally menacing. His life and art are considered here.

A Favourite Book
Ruth Prickett
takes us into the imagination of H. J. Ford’s visualization of Andrew Lang’s Green Fairy Book, which is one of her favourites. Ruth also speaks revealingly of her strategies as a collector, describing the bibliophile’s obsession as a “gentle madness.”

First Day Covers
Illustrations belong in books and magazines. Brian McAvera thinks not, basing his claim on the intense designs appearing on F.D.C.s. These unexpected delights are analysed in his telling introduction to the subject.

Alan Sorrell
Images contemplated in childhood often resonate through adult life. is was certainly true of the Editor’s experience of the “reconstruction”  illustrations by Sorrell, whose visions of Welsh castles are poetically evocative of a distant past. 

David Moss
Grappling with the past and the present, tradition and the everyday, David Moss is the author of fascinating prints. Mordechai Beck traces his strategies, themes and techniques, with information based on conversations with the artist.

Bernard Partridge
Famous in his own day, but little remembered in the present, Partridge was a well-known cartoonist and illustrator. Dr Mark Bryant re-introduces this amusing, inventive and insightful designer of literary texts and current events.

Felix Darley
The American Darley is another forgotten illustrator. Professor Philip Allingham focusses on his considerable achievement as an interpreter of Dickens, concentrating on the artist’s provocative pictorial frontispieces for Great Expectations.

Eleanor Birch
An undergraduate at the University of Gloucestershire, Eleanor is an up-and-coming talent. She speaks revealingly of her work.

Look and Learn
The latest exhibitions along with details of important resources. 

Warren Clements
was for many years a writer and editor with The Globe and Mail newspaper in Toronto. He now publishes books through a small Canada-only imprint, Nestlings Press, specializing in humour and illustration. 

Sally Dunne is an M.A. graduate of the Cambridge School of Art at Anglia Ruskin University, and a practising illustrator. She recently illustrated Agatha Christie’s Crooked House and Georgette Heyer’s Arabella, both for the Folio Society. Sally’s work can be seen her website,

Wilfried Onzeais a book collector and former librarian at the Antwerp City Library. He was a founding member of the Flemish bibliophile society, Literarte, and taught the history of the private press movement at the Plantin-Moretus Museum in Antwerp. He is the author of several books and articles on books and bibliography.

Ruth Prickett is the Founding Editor of Illustration, and currently acts as its Consultant Editor. Ruth is an avid collector of illustrated books.

Brian McAvera is a playwright, art critic, curator and, occasionally, an art historian. His best-known plays are the cycle Picasso’s Women, which have been translated for productions into over 20 languages. His most recent book is a critical study of the Irish artist, Graham Gingles (“Graham Gingles Boxed In,” Cyphers, Secrecy And Sensuality, F. E. McWilliam Gallery, 2022). Brian is an avid collector of French nineteenth century illustrated books.

Dr Simon Cooke is a widely-published author of books and essays on illustration. His last book, The Moxon Tennyson,  was published in 2021 and he is currently completing a study of Victorian illustrations of the supernatural. He became the editor of Illustration in 2021.

Mordechai Beck is a printmaker, artist and writer born in the UK, but based in Israel. His prints have been purchased by MOMA, the Library of Congress, the universities of Yale, Berkeley and others. His articles appear regularly in The Jewish Chronicle, and in The Guardian, Print Quarterly and Letter Arts Review. His fiction has been published in the Literary Review, The Jewish Quarterly and elsewhere.

Dr Mark Bryant was an editor in literary and academic book publishing before becoming a writer, journalist, lecturer and exhibition curator. He has written for the Independent, History Today, British Journalism Review, Military History Monthly and other publications. His books include the Dictionary of 20th Century British Cartoonists and Caricaturists, and he has contributed articles to the Oxford Dictionary of National Biography. He is a former trustee of the Cartoon Museum, London.

Professor Philip Allingham has published widely on Dickens and Hardy with a focus on their illustrations, and is the longest-standing contributor to the Victorian Web. Having retired from his post at Lakehead University, he has continued to work on the Victorian and American illustrators of Dickens and Lever while teaching part-time for Vancouver Island University and Thompson Rivers University.