This piece is from British illustrator, Ralph Steadman’s Extinct Boids series. A wonderful collection of drawings of birds that once lived on earth, alongside some that only ever existed in Steadman’s incredible imagination.
Captured in a riot of expression and colour, the collection is a perfect showcase of Steadman’s style, and with invented species including the ‘Needless Smut’, the ‘Nasty Tern’ and the ‘Gob Swallow’, quite the reflection of the artist’s sense of humour too.
Each artwork in the series began life with the artist flicking wet ink onto the canvas. Those splashes were then used to inspire the background, shape and feathers of the star of the piece – in this instance, a jolly owl.
The Laughing Owl comes from a limited edition of 36. It has deckled edges and is signed by the artist.
Medium: Giclee, Print
Edition Type: Limited Edition
Edition Size: 36
Size (cm): 75 x 57
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About the artist
Ralph Steadman is a British illustrator who resides in Kent. He is a social and political caricaturist, whose work dominated the pages of Punch and Private Eye in the 1960s and 70s. Nowadays, you’ll regularly find his work in The New Statesman and The Independent.
Steadman is best-known for providing ‘chaotic texture to the chaotic text’ produced by gonzo journalist, Hunter S. Thompson. The artist provided sketches for Thompson’s ground-breaking 1970 magazine article, The Kentucky Derby Is Decadent and Depraved, which launched Thompson’s career. Later, the pair collaborated on Thompson’s seminal novel, Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas – making Steadman’s splattered style instantly-recognisable the world over.
In between collaborations with Thompson, Steadman has written and illustrated more than 20 adult and children’s books, illustrated the DVD boxset for Breaking Bad, and travelled the world’s vineyards producing hundreds of artworks for Oddbins catalogues.
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