The Null Device

RIP Ronald Searle

Legendary British cartoonist Ronald Searle has passed away, aged 91. Searle had survived imprisonment in horrific conditions by the Japanese army on the Burma Railway (a fellow prisoner remarked that one would only know that he was dead if he stopped drawing) and went on to an illustrious career, creating the St. Trinian's books and the tales of the grotesque, recalcitrant schoolboy Molesworth, and also drawing for publications including Punch, Le Monde and Le Figaro. Searle apparently kept drawing right up to the end. His friend, the cartoonist Gerald Scarfe (whom you may know from his work on Pink Floyd's The Wall) has a eulogy:
Ronald had a wonderfully dry sense of humour. Once a year, he would pay the restaurant with a picture: pigs going into the kitchen looking doubtful, or snails crawling on to people's plates. We would always find pictures waiting for us at the table: Jane would have a drawing of a cat wearing a ballerina's outfit or putting lipstick on in front of a mirror; and I would have a bearded, scruffy cat, scratching his head, pens and paper laid out, waiting for his cartoon to come.
There's a gallery of images here and another, of drawings he made for his wife during her illness, here.

There are 1 comments on "RIP Ronald Searle":

Posted by: naptastic Thu Jan 5 15:24:40 2012

There's a book you *MUST* look at if you enjoy Ronald Searle's drawings, called "Too Many Songs by Tom Lehrer with Not Enough Illustrations by Ronald Searle." If you're not already familiar with Tom Lehrer's work, you should take some time to acquaint yourself with all of it. The lesser-known stuff is the most disgusting and the funniest. ("My Home Town" is a personal favorite.)

The book contains, if I remember correctly, only 2 sketches by Searle, but they are really something special.