Geoff Dunbar’s animation celebrated by Barbican exhibition

The multi-award-winning animation work of Geoff Dunbar, whose films include ‘Rupert Bear and the Frog Song’ for Sir Paul McCartney and the BBC’s ‘The World of Peter Rabbit and Friends’, will be exhibited at Barbican Music Library next month.

Dunbar, who collaborated with Sir Paul on the ‘Frog Chorus’ and ‘Daumier’s Law’, based on the work of the French caricaturist and painter, Honoré Daumier, has won several major awards, including two BAFTAs, a Palme d’Or, and a Golden Bear during a prolific career that spans over four decades.

Geoff Dunbar. Art into Animation opens at the City of London Corporation’s Barbican Music Library on Thursday 11 July and will showcase some of the meticulously hand-crafted drawings created for the films by Geoff and his team of animators.

Dunbar’s interest in animated films began at an early age, stimulated by the art of cinema and the work of early animators, which he studied at Saturday morning cinema clubs in his hometown of Abingdon in Oxfordshire.

Leaving school at the age of 15 to work in a wide range of jobs, he saved enough money to buy an 8mm movie camera and taught himself the rudiments of moving drawings. He then secured a trainee position at the Film Producers Guild in London, where he honed his skills as an animator, designer, and director.

His other work includes adaptations of Alfred Jarry’s ‘Grand Guignol’ UBU ROI and ‘The Cunning Little Vixen’, as well as the BAFTA-nominated ‘Tuesday’. Dunbar continues to work on his writings and drawings at his studio in Abingdon.

Graham Packham, Chairman, City of London Corporation’s Culture, Heritage and Libraries Committee, said:

“This free exhibition will remind us that artists like Geoff Dunbar painstakingly drew and photographed their work - frame by frame, hour after hour - to make these remarkable animated films.

“It took considerable skill, dedication, and talent to bring these animated characters and scenes to life and as well as offering many insights into the art of animation, it will celebrate Geoff Dunbar’s outstanding achievements in the field.”

Geoff Dunbar said:

I am delighted to have been invited to exhibit a selection of artwork from my animated films at Barbican Music Library, and that the opportunity makes it possible for me to put most of it on display for the first time.

“As well as bringing back happy memories of watching the films, I hope that visitors will share my enthusiasm for viewing art from the so-called ‘golden age’ of British animation, before CGI wizardry and digital manipulation were introduced.”

The City of London Corporation, which owns and manages Barbican Music Library and is the founder and principal funder of the Barbican Centre, is the fourth largest funder of heritage and cultural activities in the UK and invests over £100m every year.

The City Corporation is also developing Culture Mile between Farringdon and Moorgate – a multi-million-pound investment which will create a new cultural and creative destination for London.


Notes for Editors:

Geoff Dunbar. Art into Animation is presented at Barbican Music Library from 11 July to 30 September 2019. Admission FREE

Artist and animator Geoff Dunbar and Michael Southwell, Principal Library Assistant – Music, Barbican Music Library, are available for media interview. For further details and hi-res images, please contact:

Andrew Buckingham, Media Officer, City of London Corporation

Tel: 020 7332 1452 / Mobile: 07795 333060 /


About the City of London Corporation:

The City of London Corporation is the governing body of the Square Mile dedicated to a vibrant and thriving City, supporting a diverse and sustainable London within a globally-successful UK. 

About Barbican Music Library:

Barbican Music Library, which is owned and managed by the City of London Corporation, is a vibrant public library in the heart of the Barbican Centre with books, spoken word recordings, DVDs, CDs and scores available for loan to all visitors. The Library has particular strengths in music (including listening facilities and practice pianos), arts, children's and financial sections, as well as Internet access and self-service photocopying. Membership is available to those who live, work or study in the City of London, and regular visitors to the Barbican. Barbican Music Library is on Level 2, Barbican Centre, Silk Street, London EC2Y 8DS. It is within walking distance of a number of London Underground stations, the closest being Barbican, St Paul’s and Moorgate. The nearest train stations are Liverpool Street and Farringdon. Bus route 153 runs directly past the Barbican. Free bicycle spaces and paid car parking spaces are available.

Opening times:

Monday, Wednesday and Friday 9.30am – 5.30pm

Tuesday and Thursday 9.30am – 7.30pm

Saturday 9.30am – 4pm

Closed Sundays and Bank Holidays

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