Original artwork of David Austin

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

Mainly contains sketchbooks and pocket cartoons which appeared in the Guardian between 1996 and 2005. Also includes artwork for other publications including the Spectator, Private Eye, Broadcast Magazine and Computer Weekly and drawings relating to Austin's creative projects such as 'Merrie England' and a Y2K book.

Administrative / Biographical History

David Austin was born in in Lavendon, Buckinghamshire in 1935, the elder of two children of Jack and Toni Austin. The family moved near to Southend-on-Sea soon after his birth and David attended Southend High School for Boys. He went on to study Chemistry at Leicester University and spent his National Service in the RAF. His first job was as an industrial chemist but he resigned in 1966 to re-train as a teacher and went on to work in two primary schools in London. In 1970 he began to draw the 'Hom Sap' cartoon strip for Private Eye which ran for 35 years and he became a full-time cartoonist in 1976, having resigned as a teacher in 1974. He founded a comic magazine called 'Duck Soup' with cartoonists Kipper Williams and Tom Johnston in 1978 and later worked for Today, Mail on Sunday, The Spectator and Daily Telegraph before moving to the Guardian in 1990. At the Guardian he produced a daily front-page pocket cartoon and later an additional drawing for the letters page. His last cartoon for the Guardian was published on 28 October 2005.

Conditions Governing Access

Open. Records may be viewed in our reading room by appointment only, see our website for more information.

Acquisition Information

Donated to the GNM Archive by Janet Slee, 2007

Other Finding Aids

A full catalogue description for this collection can be found on the GNM Archive catalogue.