A brilliant little museum.

I’m not one for going to Museums that much but this one seemed like a good idea. I’ve always liked the work of Charles Dickens and grew up on his storytelling, sometimes for my own pleasure or more often as set text for us to read at school.

I like the sort of places where the star of the show might have just left to get a bottle of milk. Dickens would of course have had servants to do this, but whatever. The Dickens Museum ( Take a look here ) is a house where he lived for only two years or so and when really starting out on his career. Read all about it in the link, but take my word for it it really is worth a visit and if you do, then get the headphones, which guide you through the rooms. Plus they have an extra bit of drama that can be read to you, to put you in the picture of the time, all really well done. What’s more they let you take photos, some of the more stuffy museums won’t let you, but they do here as long as you don’t use flash. As a bonus the staff are friendly and the little coffee shop serves great coffee and snacks. Could not fault it.

Dickens hair

This is a lock of Charles Dicken’s hair, photographed at the Museum by me!
There’s loads more to see like the desk where he wrote David Copperfield.
“More? You want more?

Dickenssig

Here’s a photo I took of his signature, with all that underlining he seems like a positive type of bloke, or is he drawing a whirlwind under his name?


 

I walked back to the East End of London after my trip, where I was staying, so had the bonus of imagining what it all must have been like in those Dickensian days.

 

Pont: Graham Laidler, and the British Character

A quick aside from my musings on Greece and our trip to Spetses.

I’m working towards an Exhibition in August here in Cheltenham of drawings that go under the title of “The British Character”. This project was inspired by the finding of a small book that I found in a charity shop by the same name which had an intro by the late Alan Coren – now there was a funny man.The drawings in this book are by Pont, who’s real name was Graham Laidler. Mr Laidler was one of the country’s leading cartoonists in the late 1930’s and had a perceptive eye for the way of the British, as well as wonderful draughtsmanship skills. I have used his ideas as the basis for my own interpretations and drawings for the exhibition.

I thought it right in the circumstances that I might invite relatives of Pont to the Exhibition to see a modern take on his thoughts, so I embarked on a search to find them. Everyone I asked has been quick to respond but until today I have had little positive feedback. An email to the Cartoon Museum has today resulted in a positive response and someone who knows of living relatives. As I write I am waiting to see if there will be more, and if I am able to invite them down here in August. A big thanks to Anita O’Brien at the Cartoon Museum for her help.

I’ve never been to the Cartoon Museum, perhaps I should!  Cartoon Museum in London

Inventiongreyweb341

The British Character
A capacity for invention linked to great optimism


You can see some of Pont’s fine work here and even buy one of his originals.
Pont at Punch     Chris Beetles Gallery