Satirical London: 300 years of irreverent images
1 April to 3 September 2006
This exhibition is now closed and the information below is for archive purpose only.
“Anything sharp or severe is called a Satyr.” Cocker’s English Dictionary, 1704.
Satirical London is an exhibition of visual satire produced in and about London over three centuries. In this period the form of satire has changed radically, from popular individual engravings to newspaper cartoons and television.
Some images are produced by amateurs, others by leading artists such as Hogarth, Gillray and Rowlandson. Some are mildly humorous, others vitriolic. What links them is their depiction of the comic and their visual commentary on vice and folly, human foibles and unsociable behaviour. They give us a rare perspective on life in London from a street level perspective imbued with popular opinion.
The exhibition is divided into three major subject areas and a children’s activity area. The first area, The Art of Satire, considers the development of satire in London from the late 17th century to the present day. The second area, London, focuses on London itself, and the comic topography that emerged in satire, while the third area, Londoners, will focus upon the people of London.
A final section displays a Punch and Judy area showing puppets from the collection and has new puppets for children to play with, and a fun computer interactive, enables you to create your own caricature!
Go to the Satirical print shop homepage.