Nature in Art

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Wallsworth Hall
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‘Wrestling with a Pencil’: Norman Thelwell Exhibition


When: 6th June – 16th July

Admission: Included within admission price to museum. More details on our website.

nature in art

Info about exhibition: A new exhibition of the work of popular cartoonist, Norman Thelwell is opening at Nature in Art on 6th June 2023.

To mark the 100th anniversary of his birth, this exhibition will include a broad selection from a remarkable body of work produced over a lifetime.

Norman Thelwell (1923 -2004) was one of Britain’s most popular cartoonists to have worked in Britain since the Second World War. Although best known for his images of little girls and their ponies, his work is far more wide ranging than many realise. The countryside and environment were particular passions that informed his work and his cartoons were a powerful way for him to comment on issues of the day.

‘Wrestling with a Pencil’ was the title of Thelwell’s autobiography (1984), and in it he says, ‘My interest lies in the human dilemma, the day to day problems of life and the way we are all swept along by events or developments which we feel helpless to influence. I seem to have touched at one time or another on almost every subject under the sun, from combine harvesters to computers, rockets to ramblers, paraffin to pigs. But the predominant thread which has always run through my work is my love of and fascination with the countryside: the flesh and bones of these islands’. Thelwell’s book, ‘The Effluent Society’, which commented on environmental issues, was republished this March. (This and some other merchandise will be available in the shop.)

This exhibition will include a broad selection from a remarkable body of work produced over a lifetime. The selection was made with the assistance of Thelwell’s artist son, David, who will be artist in residence at Nature in Art in June, and Thelwell’s daughter, Penny. This selection of work reveals not just Thelwell’s skill as an artist, but also his mastery of sharp social comment and his awareness of then current and future threats. He used satire to convey serious messages about the need to preserve the natural world; many of which still have poignancy today.

Please see the Nature in Art website for more details.


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Nature in Art

Nature in Art, the world’s first museum and art gallery dedicated to fine, decorative and applied art inspired by nature.

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