'Scarfe and Music'

Gerald Scarfe on Rock, Pop and Opera at Barbican Music Library

Drawings and designs for Pink Floyd’s iconic album, ‘The Wall’, many of which have not been previously exhibited, are among the highlights of Scarfe and Music at the City of London Corporation’s Barbican Music Library.

The free exhibition (5 Sept - 31 Oct) will feature posters, models, prints and memorabilia from Gerald Scarfe’s extensive work within the world of music. The show will include his critically acclaimed costume and set designs for the L.A. Opera production of Sir Peter Hall’s The Magic Flute, as well as English National Opera’s Orpheus in the Underworld and designs for English National Ballet’s The Nutcracker.

Scarfe and Music will also feature a wide range of memorabilia from past productions and shows, as well as portraits of artists from the musical world and other previously unseen items. Models on display include Teacher, Mother, and The Wife from ‘The Wall’ and a full-size rhinoceros costume, which has been used by ‘Save the Rhino’ fundraisers in marathons.

Speaking before the opening of Scarfe and Music, Gerald Scarfe said:

I’m mainly known for my political cartoons, so I welcome this opportunity to show some of the many other things I do – ballet, opera, West End theatre, rock & roll, animation, etc – all of which include some element of music. I hope that visitors to Barbican Music Library will enjoy the show.”

Michael Southwell, Principal Library Assistant at Barbican Music Library, said:

My colleagues and I are thrilled and privileged to be able to display some of Gerald’s outstanding work from the world of music. Gerald is one of the country’s most well-known and prolific artists and illustrators, and having been an admirer of his work for as long as I can remember, it has been an honour to curate this exhibition. We are sure that ‘Scarfe and Music’ will prove to be one of the most popular shows of recent years.”

A collaboration between Gerald Scarfe, Barbican Music Library and Barbican Art Gallery, the exhibition will run from 5 September to 31 October. The City of London Corporation, which owns and manages Barbican Music Library, invests £80m every year in heritage and cultural activities of all kinds. It is the UK’s largest funder of culture after the government, the BBC, and the Heritage Lottery Fund.


Notes for Editors:

Gerald Scarfe will be available for meet-and-greet opportunities and book signings on selected days during the exhibition - dates will be confirmed. The free exhibition runs from 5 September to 31 October. Images are available on request. Please contact Michael Southwell (see below) for further details about images and interviews.

For more information, please contact:

Michael Southwell, Principal Library Assistant, Barbican Music Library

Tel: 020 7638 0672 / Email

Andrew Buckingham, Media Officer, City of London Corporation

Tel: 020 7332 1452 / Mobile: 07795 333060 / Email

About Barbican Music Library:

Barbican Music Library, which is free to join, is one of the most significant public music col­lections in the country, with over 15,000 CDs and DVDs covering a range of different musi­cal styles. It also boasts a stock of nearly 16,000 music scores and an extensive collection of books about music and musicians; and over 70 periodicals covering different aspects of music and recording, with selected back issues available for reference. Eight listening booths are provided, in which recordings from the lending collection can be listened to free of charge. Two digital pianos are available free of charge for practice purposes.

About the City of London Corporation:

The City of London Corporation is a uniquely diverse organisation. It supports and promotes the City as a world leader in international finance and business services and provides local services and policing for those working in, living in and visiting the Square Mile. It also provides valued services to London and the nation. These include the Barbican Centre, Barbican Music Library, Guildhall School of Music & Drama, Guildhall Library, Guildhall Art Gallery and Roman Amphitheatre, London Metropolitan Archives, a range of education provision (including three City Academies); five Thames bridges (including Tower Bridge and Millennium Bridge), Central Criminal Court at Old Bailey, over 10,000 acres of open spaces (including Hampstead Heath and Epping Forest), and three wholesale food markets. The City of London Corporation is London’s Port Health Authority and also runs the Animal Reception Centre at Heathrow. For more details, visit