Quentin Blake opens House of Illustration gallery in London

The Roald Dahl illustrator's first exhibition is 'Inside Stories' of his own work

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The Independent Culture

Sir Quentin Blake has opened a special gallery dedicated to illustration after earning acclaim for his iconic drawings in Roald Dahl's books.

Members of the public can visit the House of Illustration near London's King's Cross as of this morning, with fashion designs, political cartoons and advertisements among the artworks exhibited.

"Illustration has been one of the most distinctive strands in the history of British art," Blake said. "It's one of the things that the British are good at – we don’t say that often enough."

The House of Illustration is believed to be the world's first public education space and gallery dedicated to the art form and is celebrating Blake’s impressive career for opening exhibition, Inside Stories.


Illustrations from "contrasting" Dahl books The Twits and Danny, the Champion of the World feature in the inaugural display, alongside work for David Walliams' The Boy in the Dress and Michael Rosen's Sad Book.

 "One of the things that was interesting about working with (Dahl) was you never knew what the next book was going to be," said Blake, who has illustrated 300 books.

Illustrator Quentin Blake photographed at his London home

The House of Illustration was made possible through a series of fundraising efforts, including a 2010 art auction at Sotheby's, but Blake first had the idea a decade ago.

"Illustration is all around us everywhere, but what I hope is that here you will stop and think about it," he said.