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Rowland Emett – eccentrically whimsical inventor

September 17, 2009 in General

PCOer The Surreal McCoy reports on John Jensen’s illustrated talk on the workings of cartoonist Rowland Emett‘s imagination at the Cartoon Museum in London last night.

Admitting he was ‘genetically propelled to enjoy Emett’s work’ John showed what an accomplished technician Emett had been with drawings of trains and planes (he had worked as a draughtsman for the Air Ministry) as well as his elaborate filigree work for bizarre and outlandish machines which are also on show at the museum until November 1st.

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A suitably surreal slideshow traced Emett’s career, including artists such as Saul Steinberg and Hokusai who influenced him. It also highlighted the many different mediums in which he drew, which ran from scraperboard to watercolour. During the Second World War Emett had provided cartoons for propaganda purposes including an acidly-drawn caricature of Hitler in uncharacteristically lurid colours and with a French tagline.

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There will be another talk at the museum on Wednesday 23rd September when Emett’s daughter Claire will share anecdotes and memories of her father’s life. The talk is from 6.30pm – 7.30pm. Entrance is £5, Concessions £4 and Friends of the Museum £3.

The Cartoon Museum, at 35 Little Russell Street, Bloomsbury, is open Tuesday-Saturday 10.30am to 5.30pm and Sundays 12pm to 5.30pm.