The Great British Graphic Novel
20 April – 24 July 2016
Charting the rise of the British graphic novel through the work of William Hogarth, Kate Charlesworth, Martin Rowson, Bryan and Mary Talbot and more.
Posy Simmonds has worked as a professional comic artist for almost 50 years and is one of the stalwarts of the genre. Her Guardian comic strip, Tamara Drewe, was published as a single volume in 2008 and is a modern reworking of Thomas Hardy's Far from the Madding Crowd. She is one of the many pioneering artists whose work is featured here.
At the heart of the show is a page of original artwork from the genre-defining graphic novel Watchmen, which was drawn by the UK’s comics laureate, Dave Gibbons. Watchmen broke new ground in comic-strip storytelling when it was released in 1986 and is regarded as one of the greatest graphic novels ever produced.
After Watchmen's publication the illustrations were sold off and disappeared into private collections. In 2015 the Cartoon Museum was able to acquire a black and white page of sketches from the USA – this is the only page of original Watchmen artwork to be held in a public collection anywhere in the world.