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Out of this World: The Art of Josh Kirby


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The first retrospective exhibition of science fiction artist Josh Kirby will take place at the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool from 15th June to 30th September 2007.

Born in Liverpool in 1928 and trained at Liverpool School of Art, Josh began his career producing film posters, moving to book and cover art for magazines. Some of his more famous work includes the first cover of Ian Fleming's Moonraker and the poster for Monty Python's Life of Brian and he is best known for his cover illustrations of Terry Pratchett's Discworld series.

Out of this World: the Art of Josh Kirby spans Kirby's artistic career from his early days as a freelance artist to his famous cover illustrations for Terry Pratchett's Discworld and Eric/Faust fantasy series. Kirby's work has adorned the covers of some of the most iconic science fiction and fantasy novels, as well as famous film posters such as Star Wars: Return of the Jedi and Monty Python's Life of Brian. The exhibition displays his best-known work alongside the less familiar. Not to mention a unique opportunity to view Kirby's often highly complex paintings un-cropped and in their original format.

Unseen University Challenge (1995)

Ann Bukantas, curator of fine art at the Walker Art Gallery says:

"Josh Kirby possessed one of the most creative visual imaginations to come out of Liverpool in the 20th century. People may be familiar with some of his more commercial work, but may not be aware of the incredible talent and the long, wide-ranging career of the artist who created them. Whether making a painting for a book cover, a film poster or even a jigsaw box, Kirby's exceptional skills in figure drawing, perspective, composition and the rich use of colour - and frequently a wicked sense of humour - are always to the fore".

For further details, please see the Walker Art Gallery site or download the exhbition's official press release (980K PDF)

Image copyright of the Trustees of the Josh Kirby Estate and used with permission.


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