Illustrations by Les Gibbard

Archive Collection

Scope and Content

The majority of the collection is comprised of original political cartoons that were published in the Guardian newspaper between the years 1969 and 1993. The collection contains other original material such as illustrations, caricatures, sketches and ideas' books. The ideas' books show how Gibbard created rough forms of images that would later become published political cartoons. There is also a large number of copies of work contained within this collection. These copies are in a variety of formats including photocopies, bromides, process prints and negatives.

Administrative / Biographical History

Leslie David Gibbard was born on 26 October 1945 in Kaiapoi, New Zealand.

Gibbard started out on his career path in 1962 drawing cartoons, illustrations and caricatures for such newspapers as the Auckland Star, New Zealand Weekly News, Sunday News, Melbourne Herald and New Zealand Herald. It was at the New Zealand Herald that Gibbard was coached and greatly influenced by the political cartoonist Sir Gordon Minhinnick.

Gibbard arrived in London on 1 June 1967 and got his first job as arts caricaturist and pocket cartoonist for the Sunday Telegraph (1967-1970). Soon he became the successor of Bill Papas, the political cartoonist of the Guardian (1969-1994). Gibbard is the Guardian's longest serving political cartoonist and the youngest to have started his career there at the age of 23.

Gibbard contributed to a variety of other newspapers and magazines including the Daily Mirror, Daily Sketch, Daily Telegraph, Sunday Mirror, Evening Standard and Time Out. He also worked as an animator for Richard Williams (1973-1975) and Ken Harris of Warner Brothers. Gibbard was involved in the animation of 'Beatrix Potter', 'Wind in the Willows', 'Famous Fred' and other such series for television. Gibbard produced his own animated political cartoon series for Granada TV's 'Reports Politics' entitled 'Newshound' (1976-1977). He has drawn weekly political cartoons for BBC's 'On The Record' (1988-1995), 'Newsnight' and Channel 4's 'A Week in Politics' (1982-1986).

He was voted the BISFA Slide/Strip Artist of the Year 1980 and National Canine Defence League Dog Cartoonist of the Year in 1989. A collection of Gibbard's best works entitled 'Gibbard's Double Decade Omnibus' was published in 1991 by Bellew Publishing, London.

Arrangement

The collection has been divided into five sections/series with the titles 'Political cartoons', 'Illustrations', 'Caricatures', 'Sketches' and 'Copies'.

The 'Political cartoons' series has been divided down into 30 folders. The 'Illustrations' series has been divided into 3 folders while 'Caricatures' remains at series level. The 'Sketches' section has been divided into one series ('Ideas' books' which has been divided into a further 17 items), one folder and one stand alone item. The final 'Copies' section has been divided into six series. One of these, 'Newspaper cuttings', has been divided into 26 items.

Conditions Governing Access

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

Acquisition Information

The majority of this collection was purchased by the Scott Trust between October 2004 and May 2005. Further accessions were added from the picture libraries.

Other Finding Aids

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