Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants - a display of work by children’s author

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An exciting new national exhibition will make its debut appearance at 20-21 Visual Arts Centre in Scunthorpe on Saturday October 25.

Visitors are in for real treat with the venue’s first Nick Sharratt exhibition ‘Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants’ – about to hit the country by storm.

Nick Sharratt, renowned children’s book writer and illustrator, is the subject of a new colourful, humorous and hands-on exhibition touring to at least six museums and galleries around the country – the first being 20-21 Visual Arts Centre.

Nick’s distinctive illustrations have captured the imagination of children across the globe. He has illustrated the work of many well-known authors including Jaqeuline Wilson’s Tracy Beaker series of books, Jeremy Strong’s ‘The Hundred-Mile-An-Hour Dog’ stories and Kes Gray’s ‘Daisy’ books. He has also written and illustrated more than 40 of his own books, including the hilarious ‘Ketchup on your Cornflakes’ and ‘Elephant Wellypant’.

The exhibition is for people of all ages and tells the story of how he became an illustrator, what inspires his work, and brings to life his characters through fun, ‘hands-on’ displays.

One not to miss, it features many well-known characters that Nick has illustrated over the years, including Tracy Beaker, Mrs Pirate and Hetty Feather.

The launch on Saturday will also feature street theatre from The Surreal McCoy, with giant seagulls leaving a trail of messages leading visitors to the exhibition!

There’s lots in store for the opening weekend:

Saturday 25 October, 10am to 4pm, suitable for all ages

Join us to celebrate the opening of the exhibition. Meet Nick Sharratt and help him to draw a giant picture in the gallery. Work with artist Peter Baldry to decorate a giant cardboard pirate ship, complete with pirates and a treasure chest. There will also be a host of arty activities and competitions, with the chance to win a selection of Nick Sharratt goodies.

Sunday 26 October, 10am to 4pm, suitable for all ages

Yes, it’s time for 20-21’s ever-popular Pumpkin Day again. Have a go at carving your own pumpkin and come and see some that have already been caved. Join Nick and help create a giant ‘Pumpkin Pandemonium’ picture in the gallery and take part in a variety of pumpkin related activities.

Monday 27 October, 10.30am to 4pm, suitable for those aged seven to 12 years old. Free, but please book

So you want to be an animator? This hands-on masterclass is just the ticket. Join artist Helen Piercy, for an insight into the wonderful world of animation and illustration. Inspired by Nick Sharratt’s ‘Pirates, Pants and Wellyphants’ exhibition, create your own characters and bring them to life with stop motion animation.

Every Saturday during the exhibition, which runs until Saturday 21 February, there will be a Nick Sharratt activity for visitors to have a go at (10am to 4pm).

Most supermarkets and book shops stock Nick’s books.

For more information about the exhibition, or to book, please contact 20-21 Visual Arts Centre on 01724 297070 or visit www.northlincs.gov.uk/20-21.

Nick Sharratt, said: “I’m thrilled about this exhibition. There is so much to look at and do and it’s a terrific mix of information and entertainment. I think visitors will really enjoy it. They will definitely come away with a greater insight into the world of illustrated books and my hope is that it might in turn inspire lots more reading...writing...drawing: creativity in all its forms!”

Jannine Parrish, Touring Exhibitions Officer at 20-21 Visual Arts Centre, said: “It is a real coup to work with Nick to develop this new exciting touring exhibition here at 20-21 Visual Arts Centre in Scunthorpe. Many people will remember Jacqueline Wilson’s Tracy Beaker books and other much-loved characters from the hundreds of books he has written and illustrated. We have lots of exciting things in store and free give-aways for the opening weekend, including a selection of Nick’s well-known books, and on Saturday and Sunday you can meet the man himself, so make sure you don’t miss out.”