|Birth name||Gerald Anthony Scarfe|
1 June 1936 |
St John's Wood, London, England
|Works||Pink Floyd—The Wall (1982)|
His other work includes graphics for rock group Pink Floyd, particularly on the The Wall album (1979), film (1982), and tour (1980-81). Scarfe was the production designer on the Disney animated feature, Hercules (1997).
Scarfe was born in St John's Wood, London, and was severely asthmatic as a child. He spent many of his early years bed-ridden, and drawing became a means of entertainment as well as a creative outlet. It has been speculated that the grotesque and diseased images that often characterise his work are a result of these experiences. He has himself stated that the irreverence apparent in much of his work can be traced back to "dodgy treatments" and a reliance on what he feels were incompetent doctors.
He moved to Hampstead at the age of 14, being influenced by the work of Ronald Searle. He went to Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design (now part of the University of the Arts London) in Holborn, London. He also went to the London College of Printing and East Ham Technical College (became Newham College of Further Education).
After briefly working in advertising, a profession he grew to dislike intensely, Scarfe's early caricatures of public figures were published in satirical magazine Private Eye throughout the 1960s and 1970s. Beginning in 1960, he produced illustrations for Punch, The Evening Standard and The Daily Sketch. The Sunday Times magazine assigned Scarfe to cover the 1964 US Presidential election. He continued work for The Sunday Times for two years, also producing several cover illustrations for Time magazine.
In the mid 1960s he took a job at the Daily Mail following a Dutch auction for his services with the Daily Express. His decision to work for the Daily Mail led to his estrangement from fellow cartoonist Ralph Steadman, alongside whom he had studied art at East Ham Technical College. Soon after, Steadman was commissioned to illustrate Scarfe and "produced an image that was half saint and half Superman, but with a disconnected heart". Scarfe spent just a year working for the Daily Mail, during which time he was sent to provide illustrations from the Vietnam War.
Pink Floyd and Roger Waters
Scarfe was approached to work with Pink Floyd after Roger Waters and Nick Mason both saw his animated BBC film A Long Drawn Out Trip. Pink Floyd's 1974 programme for their tour in the UK and US, in the form of a comic, included a centre-spread caricature of the band. Scarfe later produced a set of animated short clips used on the 1977 In The Flesh tour, including a full-length music video for the song Welcome to the Machine. He also drew the cover illustration for their 1979 album The Wall, and in 1982 worked on the film version of The Wall, although he and Waters fell out with director Alan Parker during the latter stages of editing. As well as the artwork, Scarfe contributed 15 minutes worth of elaborate animation to the film, including a sequence depicting the German bombing campaign over England during World War II, set to the song "Goodbye Blue Sky". He was also involved in the theatrical adaptation, including The Wall Concert in Berlin, where his animations were projected on a vast scale.
Scarfe continued to work with Roger Waters when he left Pink Floyd, creating the graphics and animation for Waters' solo album The Pros and Cons of Hitch Hiking (1984) and its supporting tour.
Scarfe's collaboration with Waters was marked in 2008 by the release of a signed limited-edition eight-print series, "Scarfe on the Wall", which contained a monograph book with an extended new interview with Scarfe and was signed by Roger Waters. Early editions of "Scarfe on The Wall" (by date of pre-order, not issue number) came with an additional print giving a total of nine in the set - making these the rarest and most valuable sets.
Scarfe was approached to work on the 1997 Disney film Hercules by Ron Clements and John Musker, longtime fans who had risen to prominence within Disney following the success of The Little Mermaid. Scarfe worked as a conceptual character artist, designing almost all of the characters and then supervising the 900 Disney artists charged with adapting his designs for the film.
His caricatures of Tommy Cooper, Eric Morecambe, Joyce Grenfell, Les Dawson and Peter Cook featured on a set of five British postage stamps commemorating British comedians that were issued on 23 April 1998.
Millennium Dome sculpture
He was invited to create a sculpture for the Millennium Dome, which was entitled "Self Portrait". The Dome's chief executive PY Gerbeau said "it mirrors what we like — and what we don't — about our nation".
Scarfe has designed sets for a number of operatic productions, including an adaptation of Roald Dahl's Fantastic Mr Fox. Following a chance meeting at a BBC prom he worked with Peter Hall on his version of Mozart's The Magic Flute, which drew critical acclaim. He is lined up to provide animation for Jim Steinman's Bat out of Hell, a stage show featuring Steinman's music.
Scarfe also designed the sets and costumes for the English National Opera's 1988 production of Orpheus in the Underworld; among the costumes Scarfe designed were those of the characters Orpheus, Eurydice, and the Gods of Mount Olympus.
Heroes and Villains
In 2003 Scarfe collaborated with the National Portrait Gallery and BBC Four to make caricatures of a number of famous Britons, to depict (along with guest commentary) their heroic and villainous attributes. Amongst the over 30 portraits he depicted included caricatures of Henry VIII, Winston Churchill, Queen Elizabeth I, Pete Best, Richard Branson, Adam Smith, William Blake, The Beatles, Agatha Christie and Diana, Princess of Wales.
In its edition of 27 January 2013 (Britain's Holocaust Memorial Day), London's Sunday Times published a cartoon by Scarfe depicting Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu paving a wall with the blood and bodies of Palestinians, captioned "Israeli elections—will cementing peace continue?" The cartoon's timing and content was criticised by groups including the European Jewish Congress and the Board of Deputies of British Jews, with accusations of antisemitism being levelled against the cartoonist. Unaware the cartoon would appear on Holocaust Memorial Day, Scarfe argued that the cartoon was clearly aimed specifically at Netanyahu and his policies, and were in response to his election win, rather than being related to Holocaust Memorial Day. The newspaper's proprietor, Rupert Murdoch, apologised for the cartoon on Twitter, and acting editor Martin Ivens promised to be more vigilant in future.
The cartoon was also published in the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, where Anshel Pfeffer discusses the cartoon in great detail, giving four reasons why, in his opinion, the cartoon is not antisemitic. The writer Howard Jacobson denied it was anti-semitic. However, British Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks condemned the cartoon.
Awards and accolades
Scarfe was awarded 'Cartoonist of the Year' at the British Press Awards 2006.
- Gerald Scarfe, Gerald Scarfe (1982)
- Gerald Scarfe and Richard West, Sketches from Vietnam (1968)
- Gerald Scarfe, Gerald Scarfe's People (1966)
- John Walker. (1987) "Gerald Scarfe & Pink Floyd". In Cross-Overs: Art into Pop, Pop into Art/artdesigncafe. Retrieved 31 December 2011.
- "Interview with Floydian Slip radio program". Retrieved 8 November 2010.
- GRO Register of Marriages: SEP 1981 13 1708 KEN&CHELSEA - Scarfe = Asher
- GRO Register of Births: SEP 1936 1a 774 HAMPSTEAD, Gerald A. Scarfe, mmn = Gardner
- Perry, Kevin (2007-02-27). "Gerald Scarfe feature interview and profile". London: The Beaver. Retrieved 2010-09-29.
- Souter, Nick; Souter, Tessa (2012). The Illustration Handbook: A guide to the world's greatest illustrators. Oceana. p. 307. ISBN 978‐1‐84573‐473‐2.
- Ralph Steadman (biography), British Cartoon Archive, University of Kent.
- Simone, Michael, "A Long Drawn-Out Trip: An Interview with Gerald Scarfe", REG Magazine (22).
- "Tour the Dome", News (BBC), 2000.
- Steinman, Jim, Entry incorrectly dated 20 July, 06:603PM. It was actually posted 20 Oct 2006.
- The Jerusalem Post http://www.jpost.com/Headlines/Article.aspx?id=301129
|url=missing title (help).
- Offensive anti-Israel cartoon in London’s Sunday Times called blood libel, JTA, 2013-12-07.
- Y net news http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4337679,00.html
|url=missing title (help).
- Jennifer Lipman "Scarfe "regrets timing" of Sunday Times Netanyahu cartoon", The Jewish Chronicle, 28 January 2013
- Pfeffer, Anshel, "Four reasons why UK cartoon of Netanyahu isn’t anti-semitic in any way", Ha’aretz.
- "Outcry over UK paper's cartoon showing bloody Israeli oppression", The Times of Israel.
- "Rupert Murdoch apologises over Gerald Scarfe cartoon", BBC News, 29 January 2013
- Mark Gardner and Anshel Pfeffer "Is the Sunday Times cartoon antisemitic?", The Guardian, 29 January 2013. The citation features a reprint of the Haaretz article by Pfeffer, which is only available via subscription on the original site.
- The Independent, 1 February 2013
- http://www.chiefrabbi.org/2013/01/29/statement-on-the-gerald-scarfe-cartoon-in-the-sunday-times/ Missing or empty
- Media Bulletin
- The London Gazette: . 14 June 2008.
- "Thatcher cartoonist Gerald Scarfe is Dorset fossil namesake". BBC Online. 21 November 2011. Retrieved 22 November 2011.
- Official website
- British Cartoon Archive, University of Kent
- Gerald Scarfe at the Internet Movie Database
- Interview with Scarfe, picture of Scarfe and examples of his work
- Radio interview with Scarfe, streaming audio and transcript
- Scarfe discusses his collected works, Scarfe by Scarfe, with George Melly and Michael Kustov - a British Library sound recording