Sur­rey il­lus­tra­tor cel­e­brated in ex­hi­bi­tion about all things Pooh

Surrey Advertiser - - Front Page - Win­nie the Pooh: Ex­plor­ing a Clas­sic, De­cem­ber 9 – April 8. With sup­port from the Un­win Char­i­ta­ble Trust

AS part of the largest ever Win­nie-the-Pooh ex­hi­bi­tion, orig­i­nal draw­ings by Sur­rey artist EH Shep­ard will go on dis­play at the Vic­to­ria and Al­bert Mu­seum (V&A).

The ex­hi­bi­tion, themed around AA Milne’s charis­matic bear, is ti­tled Win­ni­ethe-Pooh: Ex­plor­ing a Clas­sic. It will look at how Shep­ard pro­duced en­dur­ing il­lus­tra­tions, com­bin­ing ex­pres­sive line with white space and an un­der­stated hu­mour match­ing that of the au­thor.

The ex­hi­bi­tion will run from De­cem­ber 9 to April 8 in gallery 38 at the mu­seum.

Shep­ard was born in 1879 and moved to Sham­ley Green shortly af­ter mar­ry­ing, in 1904.

Milne and Shep­ard were in­tro­duced in 1923 and, at first, Milne was un­sure of whether the il­lus­tra­tions were in the style he was look­ing for.

Milne used Shep­ard to il­lus­trate the book of po­ems When We Were Very Young and, happy with the re­sults, in­sisted he il­lus­trate for the first col­lec­tion of Win­nie-thePooh sto­ries in 1926.

It is be­lieved that Shep­ard mod­elled Pooh Bear on a stuffed bear named Growler, which was owned by his own son.

In 1972, four years be­fore his death aged 96, Shep­ard gave his per­sonal col­lec­tion of pa­pers and il­lus­tra­tions to the Uni­ver­sity of Sur­rey.

For­mer Labour MP Tris­tram Hunt, now direc­tor of the V&A, said: “I’m de­lighted Win­nie-the-Pooh is be­ing cel­e­brated at the V&A.

“From the world’s largest col­lec­tion of EH Shep­ard’s Win­nie-the-Pooh pencil draw­ings, to home­made honey from our rooftops in South Kens­ing­ton, the V&A is the per­fect home for Pooh.”

The V&A has col­lected chil­dren’s books since its in­cep­tion in 1852 and has the largest col­lec­tion of EH Shep­ard’s Win­nie-the-Pooh pencil draw­ings in the world.

Span­ning more than 90 years of his­tory of the pop­u­lar Bri­tish bear, the ex­hi­bi­tion delves into the archives of the V&A, The Walt Dis­ney Company, Eg­mont Pub­lish­ing, The Shep­ard Trust and The Uni­ver­sity of Sur­rey, to fea­ture around 230 works from 1920 to the present day.

Items of in­ter­na­tional sig­nif­i­cance will be on show, in­clud­ing orig­i­nal il­lus­tra­tions, manuscripts, proofs and early edi­tions, let­ters, pho­to­graphs, car­toons, ce­ram­ics and fashion, all fea­tur­ing the much-loved char­ac­ter and his friends Christo­pher Robin, Eey­ore, Kanga and Roo, Owl, Piglet, Rab­bit and Tig­ger.

And, for the first time, the pencil sketch and the pen and ink draw­ing of the cel­e­brated ‘Pooh­sticks’ il­lus­tra­tion, fea­tur­ing Win­nie-the-Pooh, Piglet and Christo­pher Robin, will go on dis­play side by side.

There will also be video and au­dio clips, in­clud­ing a 1929 record­ing of Milne read­ing Win­nie-the-Pooh.

‘Bump, bump, bump’, Win­nie-the-Pooh chap­ter 1, pencil draw­ing by EH Shep­ard, 1926. © The Shep­ard Trust, re­pro­duced with per­mis­sion from Cur­tis Brown.

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