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Celebrate the iconic illustrated Ladybird Books and the impact they made in teaching children about the natural world.

On loan from Penguin Random House, original artworks will be displayed from beloved titles published between 1940 and 1980, including: the What To Look For series, British Wildflowers, Garden Flowers, British Birds and their Nests, The Life of a Honey Bee, Pets and Trees. From children picking fruit and flowers, to colourful depictions of wildflowers and wildlife, this heart-warming collection of illustrations will take visitors back to the innocence and joy of playing in the garden as a child.

One of Ladybird Book’s key artists featured in this exhibition is Charles Tunnicliffe RA (1901-1979), who specialised in naturalistic paintings of birds and other animals. Tunnicliffe notably illustrated tea cards for the company Brooke Bond, illustrated Henry Williamson’s book Tarka the Otter, and was elected a Royal Academician in 1954. He was commissioned by Ladybird Books to create illustrations for the What to Look For seasonal series. An image from each season is featured in the exhibition. Other key artists include John Leigh-Pemberton, who specialised in illustrations of flowers and wildlife, and Allen Seaby, an ornithological painter.

Accompanying the artworks, the exhibition includes interactive children’s activities such as dressing up, a nature hunt trail, art activities and a Ladybird Books memory board on which to share memories.

Books & manuscriptsPrints & drawingsModern artLondon

Garden Museum

Lambeth Palace Road, Lambeth, London, Greater London, SE1 7LB

020 7401 8865


Opening times

Opening hours: Sunday to Friday: 10.30 – 17.00
Saturday: 10.30 – 16.00
Closed the first Monday of the month

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