Gillray's Ghost

To mark the 200th anniversary of his death, an exhibition of political caricatures by James Gillray and other cartoonists who have been inspired by him.

Known as 'the father of the political cartoon', James Gillray was a brilliant satirist who used his work to call the king, prime ministers and high-ranking generals to account.

Born in Chelsea in west London, Gillray started out as a letter-engraver before being admitted as a student in the Royal Academy. He continued engraving in order to support himself while studying, producing caricatures under fictitious names. These works enjoyed huge success – crowds would gather to examine them from his publisher's shop window – and it is now thought as many as 1700 caricatures can be attributed to him.

Many of his harshest satires are directed against George III, who, after examining some of Gillray's sketches, was reported to have said 'I don't understand these caricatures'. Gillray responded with a new drawing in which he mocked the king's pretensions to be a connoisseur of art.

Don't miss

Also featured are contemporary cartoonists and caricature artists whose work has been inspired by Gillray's in some way, such as Steve Bell, Dave Brown, George Cruikshank and Nicholas Garland.

Venue details

Cartoon Museum 35 Little Russell St London WC1A 2HH 020 7580 8155

Entry details

Free entry with National Art Pass
Free entry to exhibitions with National Art Pass

Mon – Sat (including Bank Holidays), 10.30am – 5.30pm
Sun, 12noon – 5.30pm

Closed 25 – 31 Dec and 1 - 2 Jan

Closed occasional Mondays for rehanging exhibitions. See website for details.