Cartoons by Chris Riddell

Scope and Content

Includes both cartoons created for The Observer and individually commissioned for specific events.

Administrative / Biographical History

Educated at Archbishop Tenison's School, London and Epsom School of Art and Design. He studied illustration at Brighton Polytechnic Art School where he graduated with a First Class Honours Degree.

Riddell became editorial cartoonist on the Economist in 1988 and joined the Independent and Independent on Sunday in 1991. He also drew political cartoons for the Sunday Correspondent, 1989-1990. In 1995 he moved to the Observer as its political cartoonist.

Chris Riddell's work in all fields combines outstanding draughtsmanship with bold composition and great imagination. His style was once memorably described as being 'Like Heath Robinson with a few drinks inside him'. In his political cartoons, Riddell works in the great Punch symbolist tradition. Large animals, bloated businessmen, Grim Reapers, and huge bulbous figures that dominate the frame are all Riddell's trademarks.


Divided into the following sections:

  • CRI/1 Cartoons for the main section of the Observer
  • CRI/2 Features cartoons
  • CRI/3 Caricatures
  • CRI/4 Cartoons strips
  • CRI/5 Individually commissioned cartoons

Access Information

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

Acquisition Information

Majority of collection purchased from Chris Riddell in 2008, two further cartoons donated by the artist, six bought from The Cartoon Gallery, London; and one from the Political Cartoon Gallery.

Other Finding Aids

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