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Bawden's Beasts

Bawden’s Beasts

10th February 2018 to 27th January 2019

Edward Bawden Gallery

Free Entry

The Higgins Bedford welcomes a new exhibition with Bawden’s Beasts, which opened earlier this month and runs right through until January 2019.

 

This exhibition features more than 60 works from the renowned Cecil Higgins Gallery Collection, the world’s largest archive of Edward Bawden’s work

 

British artist and designer Edward Bawden’s (1903–1989) lifelong fascination with creatures of all sizes is the focus of this new exhibition at The Higgins Bedford.  Bawden’s Beasts shines a light on the animals – cats, cows and tortoises among them – that inhabit so many of Bawden’s prints and illustrations, and the inventive, often hilarious ways in which he depicts them.

 

Bawden often put animal subjects to work, giving them human roles and expressions. In his imaginative designs for luxury food store Fortnum & Mason wasps play tennis, seahorses serve sardines and cats dance the night away at cocktail parties.

 

Equally popular and successful were Bawden’s quirky illustrations for Shell’s press advertisements, in which bunny rabbits and woodworms play leading parts in helping to sell gallons of petrol to a growing number of new car owners during the 1930s.

 

Also on show are Bawden’s colourful and evocative linocuts of Aesop’s Fables, such as Ant and Grasshopper, and several of his book illustrations including those he created for his children while he was away during the Second World War.

 

Councillor Sarah-Jayne Holland, Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Culture said “Bedford is very fortunate to house this incredible collection of work by such an influential artist. This free exhibition is running for nearly a year at our own local museum and art gallery, right in the town centre.”

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